The Novel's Villain - Chapter 84
22. What Is an Emperor? (3)
The General Manager, Yoo-na, Heo-young, Ella, Gallock, and Arina. Everyone looked at Jin-woo. Choi Hee-yeon was the only one who tried to figure out the situation with shaking eyes. She looked as if asking for an explanation, but unfortunately, there was no time for that.
The sand soldiers were about to be upon them.
‘I didn’t know I’d use something like this…’
The explanation would wait until later; they had to be stopped first. When Jin-woo reached out his hand, the Black Flame Dragon soared into the sky. The sun’s light was obscured by the two wings spread wide.
Jin-woo released control of the Black Flame Dragon, letting them go wild. The Black Flame Dragon began to devour Jin-woo’s dark mana. Numerous techniques were engraved on the huge wings spread out.
The demon soldiers lowered their weapons and looked up blankly.
Spears made of dark mana spewed out and struck the ground like rain. The spear of darkness burst the incoming sand soldiers and churned the ground upside down. Then, as the Black Flame Dragon’s jaw hung agape, a wave of burning breath came out. It swept through the sand soldiers and scorched the ground, then it reached the desert, where it exploded splendidly.
The Emperor was on a different scale! It was an overwhelming sight that turned those watching speechless. Jin-woo’s mana had run out. Much of it was used for show effects, but it was still very powerful. As expected, the problem was that there was a lot of attention. Since many people watched Jin-woo, the Emperor of Gold and the Incarnation of Evil wanted to show their majesty.
Wouldn’t they be satisfied with this? The number of sand soldiers decreased a lot, but there were still many left. The sand soldiers continued to advance over the ground, which was boiling with black flame.
“Since Master has shown us an example, we should move too.”
The General Manager rolled up his sleeves; his eyes gleamed with murderous spirit. The high-ranking judges and maids then took out the masks of swirling gold and black that were attached to their waists. When the high-ranking judges and maids wore their masks, their personalities changed completely. Moreover, the seal was completely lifted by the Summoning Order, and they were under the protection of the Emperor.
As the General Manager swung his fist, his mana exploded, and the sand soldiers have swept away. It was a monstrous power created by his extreme physical exercise. The high-ranking judges and maids tore the sand soldiers apart, golden cutleries flashing.
The sand soldiers belonged to the monster category, but in the eyes of the demon soldiers, the general manager’s party looked more like monsters. Ella and the orcs also greeted the sand soldiers with weapons in hand. The elves weren’t the weak combatants they used to be. They summoned great spirits and advanced on chickens while holding their spears alongside the orcs.
The battle-hungry chickens pecked at the sand violently, the soldiers collapsing as they chewed on the cores they plucked free. Ella, who was riding Red Crest and wading through the battlefield, reached out her hand, and a huge palm appeared from the earth. The hand relentlessly crushed the sand soldiers.
Gallock, who was wielding his ax, turned his head to Ella. To be precise, he was looking at Red Crest.
As Gallock grinned, Red Crest looked at him with deep eyes and spat out the reed it was biting on. Then it smashed the sand soldier’s head with its sharp claws.
An army of elves, orcs, and chickens swooped through the sand soldiers. Heo-young and Arina also joined in quickly. When Heo-young unleashed her dark mana, the Death Knights let out grotesque screams and sent out their demon energy alongside the Black Skeletons.
[Director Kim, you son of a bitch…!]
Heo-young, engulfed in dark mana, shouted so and swept away the sand soldiers. The Death Knights and Black Skeletons, drunk with Heo-young’s wrath and madness, swept away the sand soldiers with their terrifying red eyes. When Arina flicked her finger, an arrow made of demon energy erupted, smashing them. Artifacts functioning as cameras were floating around her.
Sarah Vriac and the demon soldiers noticed that the Knight of Darkness, running wildly, was the Emperor of Vanity. Sarah Vriac and Gallord vowed never to rebel against the Emperor.
Choi Hee-yeon was looking at Yoo-na with her eager eyes. It was hard to see such a sight even in her dreams. A Black Flame Dragon? Elves riding chickens? The Demon King, monsters, and bizarre skeletons from the China Gate? Heo-young, Ella, Arina, and the celebrities active on Earth were aliens? What were those sand soldiers?
And what about that crazy pyramid out there?
Even Lee Jin-woo was engulfed in darkness and exuding a tremendous presence. Choi Hee-yeon’s mind was half gone, but she barely held it together. Yoo-na glanced at her.
“We’ll talk about it once we deal with those things.”
“I-I get it.”
Yoo-na drew her sword and faced the sand soldiers. Her swordsmanship was very similar to Jin-woo’s, the perfection so high that Choi Hee-yeon admired it. Something fell when Yoo-na knocked down one of the slightly larger, darker-colored sand soldiers. It was a golden ring. It turned out that sand soldiers strangely dropped an item every time they died.
Yoo-na picked up the ring. It seemed worth a lot at first sight. Choi Hee-yeon was startled when Yoo-na nodded and put it on.
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“It seems like a reward.”
Choi Hee-yeon looked at the ring and turned her gaze away. Then, she started searching and slashing things similar to the sand soldiers that Yoo-na had caught. It was the moment when the swordsmanship containing the essence of the Choi Family’s Sword School was demonstrated with all her might. The army of sand soldiers who seemed poised to sweep away the Demon Realm looked rather miserable now.
Gallord nodded. There seemed to be no need to maintain a defensive line.
“Let us join as well.”
Sarah Vriac hesitated for a moment at Gallord’s words before advancing with her demon soldiers. Everyone didn’t forget to take the sign of the cross position before advancing. Jin-woo blanked out for a moment when he saw it. Where the hell did they learn that posture? It seemed to fit the demons, odd as it was.
‘Anyway, I think it’s gonna work out…’
It wasn’t in the form that Jin-woo thought of. Jin-woo remained alone as everyone was fighting fiercely with the sand soldiers. The Black Flame Dragon melted the sand soldiers, creating a cool and dignified figure as it rampaged.
How should he put it?
It was a mess.
‘After all, it’s another mess.’
Tang Xiao Zhen also played a big role for the main character, but it was an operation that succeeded as planned anyway. With a sigh, Jin-woo joined the battlefield. He had the Storm Sword in hand.
Looking at the reduced number of sand soldiers, he thought he could stop them easily. So far, there had been little damage. Although it was a chaotic mess, it was fortunate that the innocent demons didn’t die. Jin-woo cut down the sand soldier who rushed in from behind Yoo-na.
“Young Master, I didn’t expect to see you in a place like this.”
“Neither did I.”
“You are always doing something big. That gigantic structure…is it an enemy?”
“There are complicated circumstances…”
Now wasn’t the time to explain it.
‘For now, let’s just lightly….’
It was the moment when Jin-woo breathed mana into the Storm Sword. The Black Flame Dragon, which was circling the sky, looked at Jin-woo. Everyone raised their heads and looked up at the Black Flame Dragon when it roared. Even the sand soldiers stiffened and were left unable to move for a while.
Dark mana dwelled in the Storm Sword Jin-woo held.
Jin-woo was well aware of the power of the Storm Sword. It was also expected that the dark mana would increase its power. But there was something unexpected there. It was the Black Flame Dragon, which was running wild.
The Black Flame Dragon folded its wings as if it had become a hawk. It fell vertically toward Jin-woo, its eyes locked onto its sword.
The Black Flame Dragon collided with Jin-woo. A storm of black flame erupted along with a shock wave, burning the sand soldiers nearby. Jin-woo looked at the Storm Sword, which now held the dragon. It trembled and seemed likely to melt away at any moment. Some of it had already melted.
Jin-woo quickly shook off the Black Flame Dragon before the sword completely melted away. Yet, as a result of the movement, the mana of the Black Flame Dragon and the Storm Sword erupted together. At first, there was no sound; it just seemed like a dark shadow had passed by.
The sand soldiers staggered from the vibration that shook the ground.
The ground cracked, and a black airstream spewed out. It became a huge wave that shook the world.
The huge canyons on both sides crumbled horribly. Jin-woo stared blankly at sight before him. Parts of the canyon have disappeared completely, leaving the road to the desert wide open. The demon soldiers lost their minds and looked at Jin-woo. The same was true of Choi Hee-yeon, who was diligently eliminating sand soldiers.
Jin-woo coughed in vain and looked at his right hand. Thanks to the Dark Ego recharging his mana, the Black Flame Dragon tried to rise again. Jin-woo quickly wrapped the white bandage around his hand. The black air current trembled as if the Black Flame Dragon rebelled, and anyone could tell that he was trying hard to seal it. Jin-woo’s serious look also played a big role in projecting that image.
Choi Hee-yeon and Yoo-na looked at Jin-woo with worry plain in their expressions.
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“That raging Black Flame Dragon…”
“…So, you sealed it with your right hand.”
Jin-woo, who sighed after wrapping the bandage on, flinched at the words. It was an incredibly cheesy expression. Sarah Vriac, who was standing back and secretly joined them, nodded.
“You sealed that great being with your right hand…how noble you are! You’re true…!”
Everyone except Jin-woo nodded seriously.
Jin-woo wanted to scream at the skies. When Jin-woo looked at Sarah Vriac, she flinched and avoided his gaze. There were still plenty of sand soldiers left. With his glance around, everyone went back to work, finishing them off.
It was an overwhelming victory. Unlike the original story, the Demon Realm was unharmed. Yet, even after defeating the sand soldiers, no one was happy. It was because they still could see the pyramid rising in the distance with an overwhelming presence. Thanks to Jin-woo destroying a part of the canyon, it was even more visible.
The demon soldiers were about to advance at any moment. Jin-woo had no choice but to stop them. The Emperor of Maze would be frightened if such a large army gathered, and a much more difficult situation would occur if it ran away. Everyone, including the General Manager, approached Jin-woo. The General Manager was in tears.
“Master, you have always been fighting like this. Sobs, please never forgive me for not being able to help you!”
“It’s not like that….”
Jin-woo was at a loss for words when he tried to explain it.
‘How am I supposed to explain it?’
To be honest, Jin-woo didn’t know why this happened. Yoo-na nodded with a serious expression, and Choi Hee-yeon looked at Jin-woo with watery eyes. Ella, who was watching the gigantic structure, opened her mouth. Her expression was stained with fear.
“That being is…the Emperor of Maze. The Devil’s foot, the Revered Fear…a predator that wandered all over the dimensions and claimed the lives of many heroes…”
Ella knew about the Emperor of Maze. Numerous legends created by the Emperor of Maze had already spread throughout the dimensions. Everyone who heard her held a serious look. It was no ordinary enemy.
As they fell into a serious mood, Jin-woo decided to solve the situation quickly.
“I’ll be back, so wait here.”
When Jin-woo said so, everyone turned their heads. Yoo-na cocked an eyebrow at him.
“Are you saying you’re going alone?”
“It’s not that dangerous….”
“You can’t! If you do that…”
Ella took Yoo-na’s hand, then shook her head. The only one who could deal with an Emperor was an Emperor.
The Emperor was an independent being; dimensional rules and flow didn’t affect it. A being belonging to a dimension like themselves, far from opposing the Emperor, could go crazy just looking at it.
Ella calmly explained the situation. She was right; the original setting was like that. The main character also dealt with the Emperors using the power left by the Emperor of Greed. The atmosphere grew more serious. The General Manager wiped his tears with a handkerchief while the high-ranking judges and maids wept. Some were even wailing.
“Master, we will see you off.”
“No…it’s not necessary….”
“Please be safe!”
It was a very sorrowful atmosphere as Ella comforted Choi Hee-yeon and Yoo-na. It seemed that only more misunderstandings would occur if he explained any further. The Emperor of Maze was a loner who secluded itself from people. Honestly, it didn’t make sense even when Jin-woo thought about it. It just sounded like an excuse.
‘At least I can take a breather.’
Jin-woo thought so and headed into the desert. It was quite a distance to the Emperor of Maze, so he used the portal stone to teleport near the Hall of Glory.
He approached the Emperor of Maze. It was still arguing with the Dark Ego. Mana exploded out, and black tentacles from the Emperor of Maze went wild in the sky. From a distance, it looked like a great disaster had occurred.
“It’s all settled.”
[The Emperor of Maze says that it is sorry for causing trouble.]
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“That’s the same for me….”
Jin-woo also had nothing to say because he caused just as much.
“There is a large underground space, where the Emperor of Greed was sealed. I think it would be fine there.”
The Emperor of Maze trembled.
[It says that is very satisfying! It seems good because it feels like revenge on Greed.]
Things went smoothly, but there was a problem. There was a limit to increasing the size of the portal with the key Jin-woo had. He could make it very large, but the Emperor of Maze was even bigger. If the Emperor of Maze broke through the dimension, there was a risk that the JW Gate would be destroyed. The Emperor of Maze was lost in thought for a moment.
[It says that we could separate the core part and move it first.]
If they moved the core part first, the rest could be summoned slowly later. Jin-woo nodded. The core was also very large but only constituted about 20% of the overall size. That was enough for him to move it.
“Then separate it.”
It tried to separate the core, but there was only a huge earthquake nearby.
[The switch is old and not working. It asks for help.]
There were a lot of issues. Eventually, Jin-woo summoned the Black Flame Dragon again. He rode the Black Flame Dragon to reach the top floor where the core was located.
Looking down from on high, he could even see Sarah Vriac’s estate far off in the distance. Then, looking down, he saw the huge brick holding the part with the core in place. It seemed hard to remove it because it was stuck tightly together.
In this case, you usually had to hit it hard. Jin-woo gathered his dark mana and smacked it.
When Jin-woo hit it hard a few times, the huge stones started to slide apart. A wave of energy erupted, and the core soared into the sky. It was like watching a rocket take off, but that energy quickly ran out.
It soared into the sky then crashed into the desert.
[It says that it hurt.]
[It says that it hurt so much.]
It did look very painful. Jin-woo immediately opened the portal and moved the Emperor of Maze to the largest space in the Sanctuary.
* * *
Yoo-na and Choi Hee-yeon looked at the desert with worried eyes. She now understood the situation to some extent because Yoo-na had explained it to her briefly.
“Can’t I be of any help?”
Choi Hee-yeon’s question made Yoo-na’s expression turn bitter. Ella looked at them as if she understood. Arina also thought this fight would be difficult as she gazed at Heo-young. Since Heo-young was a monarch, she seemed to know the fear of the Emperor of Maze.
“Heo-yeong, what do you think?”
Heo-young pondered for a moment.
“The Emperor of Maze is the oldest and most mysterious Emperor. Even the Emperor of Greed chased it around. But if it is the Master who had brought me to my knees, I’m sure he can fight it!”
The General Manager nodded at Heo-young’s words. Sarah Vriac, Gallord, and the countless demons were watching the desert. The Emperor of Maze was exuding a terrifying aura as if to destroy the heavens and the earth.
It was then a black airstream erupted near the top of the gigantic structure. The structure that seemed unbreakable was bursting. The top part, which shone with blue light, soared into the sky and was stuck in the desert, kicking up a cloud of dust.
Everyone looked at the scene with their eyes wide open. Sarah Vriac barely lifted her trembling lips.
“T-the Emperor has cut off the head of the Maze!”
There was a shudder.
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The Maze’s head fell! The Emperor blew the head of the Maze off!
The demon soldiers cheered.