Author’s Note: And we’re finally at the 15th chapter of Let’s Go Devil King, peeps. Not to mention, the third of of this arc. You will find out why I gave the arc it’s name when you read this chapter. I actually had this one started when I finished 13 and 14 early, but didn’t get around to finishing it until recently. Anywho, please enjoy?
Chapter 15 – Far Away?
Well… it took us two days by car to get to Olko. I never want to try camping in the desert ever again, it’s more brutal than camping in the woods. Luckily for us that Coy had firewood in his inventory. Not to mention that Kimiko knew how to cook on a campfire. And last but not least, that Cecil also had tents. I shared with Kimiko while Nyra and Wells shared another. Coy and Cecil themselves would take turns on watch, as you never know what dangers await in the badlands. The most that happened was a sandstorm, which happened in the day. Coy stopped the car and we had to wait for it to pass.
Before getting into Olko, Kimiko and Nyra had to do something about their appearance. Apparently Kimiko had rings that specialized in changing appearance. She gave one to Nyra and they both looked like forest elves. Kimiko’s appearance looked just like she did back in my world, that bottle-blond hair and fair skin. The only difference were the elven ears, the glasses, and the fact she was a few inches shorter. Nyra was also blond with the same skin tone. They both went under the guise of sisters when we got inspected at the border, which surprisingly worked.
We went through two towns before we finally got to the gates of Ritme’s southern border. Coy was right, it was walled off. The walls had to at least be twenty feet tall? As for the men guarding it, they were humans and elves. But they were dressed like Templars, wearing chain-mail, nasal helmets, and white tunics over the chain-mail. The main exception was the cross being more of a gold color and the intersection of the lines being about where the heart would be. It made me wonder if they were trying to give their enemies a target?
Anyway, Coy was in the middle of talking to one of the guards at the gate. Sadly this guy also seemed too much like a background character, so I really couldn’t get a handle on his appearance other than uniform and the fact he was a human.
“So you’re the Hero?” (Guard)
“Not buying it.” (Guard)
“And why not?” (Coy)
“Because we had some people come through a few days ago claiming to be in the Hero’s party. They also claimed that they were stopping by to heal their wounds before returning to Tholman because the Hero died.” (Guard)
That explains a lot. Coy… please don’t do anything rash?
“Look pal, you saw my Adventurers’ Guild card. I am Coy. What do I have to do to prove who I am?” (Coy)
At least he isn’t going crazy and shooting up the joint?
“They say that the Hero is super strong, right? You see that tree stump over there, that really big one? If you can pull it out, then I have no choice but to belief that a scrawny half-man such as yourself is really the Hero.” (Guard)
I took at look at the stump, and I couldn’t believe it. That thing was big enough for me to lay on without any part of my body hanging off of it. Coy on the other hand, just sighed before walking to it. I saw him carefully analyze it before grabbing one of the roots. As I know that Coy’s blessing is the strength he needs, I knew he could do it. But even knowing didn’t stop my shock and awe of him pulling the whole thing out by that one root. Everyone was in shock, including the guards who were laughing at him for even thinking about it.
“What do ya want me to do with it?” (Coy)
“Just… set it back down. It appears that we’ve been had.” (Guard)
“They weren’t lying about being my party though.” (Coy)
“You mean to tell me that that part was true?” (Guard)
“It was.” (Coy)
“Well, your card checks out and you have proven your strength. So what do you want done about your former party?” (Guard)
“Nothing yet, I need to confirm something first.” (Coy)
What’s there to confirm? I mean, he’s been betrayed.
“Do you at least want us to make sure they cannot leave?” (Guard)
“If you wanna stop them at the gate, it’s your call.” (Coy)
“In that case, the guards at the other two entrances will be informed not to let them pass until everything gets cleared.” (Guard)
“Sure. Anyway… any happenings going on?” (Coy)
Please don’t make small talk?
“The pope will be coming around in a few months for a meeting with the emperor.” (Guard)
Wait… this place has an emperor?
“Yeah, there’s a big debate going on between him and the territorial lords about fully ending the isolation that’s been going on for the last millennium.” (Guard)
“Oh really?” (Coy)
“Yes. They are trying to decide by the time between the annual meeting between the pope and the emperor. This should be big as it will be her holiness Francesca III’s first time in Ritme.” (Guard)
“Makes sense as she had only just became pope a few months before I got chosen to be the Hero.” (Coy)
“I know. I was wondering if you were going to be involved, as you are… you know.” (Guard)
“I’m fully aware that I’m a half-man. However, this is also my first time in Ritme as well. But personally… I’d rather not be used for anything political.” (Coy)
“I do not blame you there. Anyway, enjoy your stay… wait! I just remembered. I will return in a moment.” (Guard)
The guard then rushed back to his station before coming back with some papers. Just what is going on here?
“The lord of Yottsu had informed us of your upcoming visit. He requests your presence. As your former party claimed your death, I thought it was some prank from his vassal. It really did slip my mind until now.” (Guard)
The guard then handed Coy the papers. Coy looked shocked when he read them. He then put them in his inventory before continuing.
“I think I shall see what he wants first.” (Coy)
“In that case, please have your current party vacate the vehicle? Apparently the locals do not like them on the roads, I honestly do not know. We can have a horse-drawn cart available within the hour to take you directly to the lord’s manor.” (Guard)
We all then got out of the car before Coy put it back into his inventory. He was a little mad because he had less room with all our stuff packed inside of it.
“It’s alright, Yuki. I can live without using my car, I actually spent most of my journey to the Demon Realm on foot.” (Coy)
As much as he loves that car, it was surprising.
“Yeah. However… I need a favor from you.” (Coy)
“Wait… a favor?”
“Yeah. Apparently… I can’t read these. Mind doing it for me?” (Coy)
He then handed me the papers from his inventory. I was confused at first on why, but I understood and was even more confused when he handed them to me. The writing… was in Japanese!? Just… hold the phone. I cannot even believe this.
“It’s an invitation to meet with the lord of Yottsu.”
“I know that. But… why is it in the chicken scratch runes that you know?” (Coy)
Everyone then looked at the papers. Cecil, Nyra, and Wells couldn’t make anything out of it while Kimiko was able to confirm what I told Coy.
“I will admit… even I didn’t know.” (Kimiko)
“But… remember what you told me before about the Demon Realm spies?”
“I did, but they were never able to infiltrate Ritme.” (Kimiko)
“It’s true. Any one of them that even managed to get behind the walls were never heard from ever again.” (Kimiko)
“I may never have been there… but I’m sure that I have a clue.” (Coy)
“Don’t forget, the half-man race has the best sense of smell of any of the races. Those rings that Nyra and the shrine maid are using, they may do a good job at changing appearance. However, there are two things that you cannot change.” (Coy)
“And those are?”
“First is scent. The demon-folk have their own special scent, so no way could they fool a half-man with one of those rings.” (Coy)
“And what about night elves?”
“They smell of the desert.” (Coy)
Right then, both Nyra and Kimiko smelled themselves.
“Don’t bother trying, it’s something that you cannot tell because your senses of smell are inferior to mine. It’s like forest elves smell of flora. And dwarfs smell of earth.” (Coy)
“What about humans?”
“They have all kinds of smells. Like Cecil here, he smells of the sea from his days as a sailor for Stinwin’s navy. Not to mention a little bit like the desert from staying on the other side of the badlands.” (Coy)
“Oi there.” (Cecil)
“It’s true.” (Coy)
“And me?” (Wells)
This also had my curiosity.
“You smell of machinery.” (Coy)
Wait… does machinery even have a smell?
“As I spent so much time in the bunker and wearing Mech Armor when outside of it, it makes sense.” (Wells)
Don’t go along with it!
“You Yuki… smell of many things that I am not accustomed to. So I can’t really pinpoint it.” (Coy)
I actually felt like smacking him. I mean… I felt a little insulted by that comment. Then again, I had to remember that he’s an animal person as well. But then I remembered…
“What’s the second thing that cannot be changed?”
Coy looked away.
“I… feel uncomfortable saying it in front of women.” (Coy)
Why do I feel like that I should smack him?
“Oi, you’re a man. There should be nothing to be ashamed of.” (Cecil)
Well… Cecil was a sailor. So I doubt that there’s much he’s ashamed of.
“Cecil… gimme your ear.” (Coy)
Cecil did as he was asked and Coy whispered something into it. Cecil himself was blushing before he finally spoke.
“Apparently it’s better just to drop it.” (Cecil)
All right, now I know it’s perverted!!!
“Oh… we heard.” (Kimiko)
What? Why is she cracking her knuckles?
“That’s right. Now Mr. Coy… how should we punish you?” (Nyra)
“Wait… how did you…”
“Are you forgetting Yuki-chan, the elven races have excellent hearing.” (Kimiko)
I almost forgot about that. But…
“Doesn’t that also mean anyone could had heard?”
“If anyone heard or conversation, wouldn’t we already have been arrested?” (Kimiko)
She had a point. We did talk about the Demon Realm and spies and stuff. Yet no one even went up to us.
“Wait… wouldn’t beating the snot out of me and Cecil be a bad move?” (Coy)
“Oi, don’t ya be involving me into this.” (Cecil)
“As you’re both the men here, don’t you think we should do a group punishment to make sure it doesn’t happen again?” (Kimiko)
I could see them both gulp.
“Just what did they mean? What is the second method?”
“Yuki-chan, it’s better that you of all people don’t know.” (Kimiko)
I then noticed her stare somewhere that gave me a hint. Out of instinct, I covered myself.
“Wait, I’m sorry!” (Coy)
He then got on his knees to beg for forgiveness. He just has no pride.
“Fine, but never mention it again.”
Nyra and Kimiko even agreed. When Wells asked me what they meant, she too blushed and covered her chest. Men, it doesn’t matter where you are. They will still be perverts.
Not too long after, the guard told us that the cart was ready. I could see that it was horse-drawn, but the driver had my attention. He was a beaver half-man, which I could tell by his buck teeth and his tail. But it was his attire that had me. It was a lighter gray than Wells’ jumpsuit, but he was dressed similar to a rice farmer. Loosely worn robe, short pants, geta sandals, and a straw kasa.
“Hello, my name is Ichiro. I will be your driver today.” (Ichiro)
I for one was surprised by how clearly he could speak with those teeth. Coy on the other hand… was just dumbfounded altogether.
“Just… what heck?” (Coy)
“Oh, you must be Coy-dono? Daisuke-sama is expecting you.” (Ichiro)
“What the hell?” (Coy)
“Coy-kun… that’s not the way a Hero should be talking.”
“Are those more suffixes from your world, Yuki?” (Coy)
“Only used in my homeland. I will explain them on the way.”
I could instantly tell that Coy was not liking this. We all sat in the back of the cart as Ichiro handled the reigns. As I was teaching everyone what the suffixes meant, I was more surprised on the scenery. Fields of rice, houses that looked pre-Meiji, a lot of things that made me feel like I went back in time. The difference, that everyone had animal ears and tails. My otaku self was really enjoying this. Actually, we were all taken aback. When I heard of the half-man race originally were tribes, I expected something similar to the Native Americans or possibly the Highlander clans of Scotland.
To be honest, I felt like we were all out of place here. Coy is still dressed like a hero from the 16-bit video game era, I’m in my school’s summer uniform, Kimiko is dressed in her maid uniform, Nyra’s wearing her usual robes, Cecil is still dressed in the way he was when we met, and Wells is still in her jumpsuit wearing a cloak over it. We really didn’t have too many options on attire change as most of Coy’s clothes are too big, I only had my school uniform, most of what Kimiko had was too big for me and Nyra while being too small for Wells, and all Cecil had for women were belly dancer outfits. I wonder even why he was selling them?
Coy had just finished a cigarette when we reached Inu Village. According to Ichiro, it’s the main village in Yottsu and where the Inuharu manor was located. To my suprise, it was like a classical Japanese villa. When I asked about the name Inuharu, that’s when I learned something. The Inuharu clan are a clan of canine half-men and the family head Daisuke is the lord of Yottsu. All the territories have different half-men who live in them. Yottsu is the home of the canine half-men. Meaning that anything related to Coy’s heritage could possibly be found here.
“Wait… if half-man politics work the way you say, then why is a rodent half-man working in canine half-man territory?” (Coy)
“Oh, it’s simple. The rodent and canine half-men have been friends for centuries. Our ancestors were the first two tribes to join under the Ox King’s banner.” (Ichiro)
“That… makes sense.” (Coy)
“Yes, it does. Even after the Ox King left and became the Hero, both the rodent and canine tribes still banded together. To be honest, I even have canine cousins due to the half-man race’s unique trait.” (Ichiro)
“Yeah, that the offspring are either one or the other.” (Coy)
“Anyway, I will tell the guards that you’re here. It’s been an honor to serve the second half-man hero.” (Ichiro)
And with that, Ichiro left. But Coy on the other hand… still seemed dumbfounded about all of this.
“Coy-kun, are you all right?”
“Yuki… it’s finally hit me.” (Coy)
“What’s hit you?”
“The true significance of being a hero.” (Coy)
“I… haven’t really met too many other half-men on my journey. And all the ones I did meet weren’t even born here. This country, it’s surrounded be a wall on all it’s borders. To the ones I met outside of these walls, they were happy that a half-man became the Hero. However… none of them ever really showed sincerity in their thanks. But that guy, Ichiro… he claimed it was an honor to give us a lift and there was true sincerity in his words.” (Coy)
“I… just don’t get it.”
“No need to. Just wait and understand it with time.” (Coy)
Ugh… he’s just confusing sometimes. It was a good thing that I took his advice, because then a few guards came by. But what they were wearing… surprised me because they were samurai style armor. But instead of a Kabuto helmet, they all wore headbands with the kanji for “four” on them. As there were no Kabuto helmets, these were not samurai. Just… guards with dog ears and tails.
The one that looked to be the commander was female. She looked as young as about me or Coy, but her hair was gray and in a ponytail. With her golden eyes, I could only assume that she was a wolf. And like the guards, she carried a Naginata. She immediately came up to Coy and sized him up. She looked to only be an inch taller than the current Kimiko. But when she came up, I saw that she was quite beautiful.
“Hello, my name is Nakano. I take it that you are Coy-dono?” (Nakano)
Wait… like Nakano Takeko? The legendary Naginata wielder who was leader of the Women’s Army and died in the Boshin war?
“It’s just Coy.” (Coy)
“Daisuke-sama is expecting you. Please, follow me.” (Nakano)
“… Yes.” (Coy)
I could tell that he was nervous, which was a side that I haven’t seen of him before. He wasn’t nervous when we first fought the Old Worlders or even when we walked into their bunker. I didn’t even think he was nervous when we first had tea in the Devil King’s Castle, but I did learn a little later that he is a good actor. But for him to show it? That is new.
“Please remove your footwear before stepping on the floor.” (Nakano)
“Wait… what?” (Coy)
“It’s a custom not to wear shoes indoors… if I’m correct?”
I almost forgot for a second that I am not in Japan anymore. According to Coy and Kimiko who have both traveled in this world before, neither one of them had been here before. As Coy’s people are the natives in this land, I had to add that last bit to avoid suspicion.
“You are correct. What is your name, girl?” (Nakano)
Does she have to refer to me as “girl”?
“My name is Yuki.”
“Snow, eh? Are one of your parents a half-man?” (Nakano)
“Let’s just say that I have roots similar to Ritme?”
“I have no idea on what you are saying, but it is not my place to ask. After all, most of the people on the outside would treat you like dirt if you’re related to the half-man race regardless of being human or not.” (Nakano)
I dodged a bullet on that one. Anyways, Coy and the others reluctantly removed their shoes and boots while Kimiko and I were the only ones to do it naturally. After we did that, we were lead into a room by Nakano that was quite enormous. Even though it was rectangular, it was more than ten tatami long. We were then asked to sit, which was confusing to those of us were weren’t accustomed to Japanese culture. But they followed my positioning when I sat down in a seiza.
“I will now tell Daisuke-dono that his guests are here.” (Nakano)
And with that she left. Not too long later, she came back.
“Now presenting–” (Nakano)
“Oh will you stop being so formal?” (new voice)
I couldn’t believe that she was cut off.
“But Daisuke-dono, it’s tradition to announce the entrance of the lord of the land?” (Nakano)
“It gets annoying after a while.” (Daisuke)
And with that, the man himself fully opened the sliding door and entered. His golden eyes and gray hair, he was definitely a wolf like Nakano. However, he was older in appearance. And on his left eye, a Japanese-style eye patch with a scar under it, this man has seen battle. His attire was definitely more that of a feudal lord. He was wearing a dark grey robe, a black hakama and matching sleeveless Haori, black sash and tabi socks. On in his obi, he had both a Katana and a Wakasashi. He then went and sat in a seiza on a zabuton.
“Hello, I am lord Dasuke Inuharu of Yottsu. You there, fellow half-man. You’re name is Coy, yes?” (Daisuke)
“Yes, sir.” (Coy)
“Mind standing up so I can get a better look at you?” (Daisuke)
“Yes, sir.” (Coy)
After Coy stood up, the lord of Yottsu himself got up and walked over to Coy. Daisuke was slightly taller, which was a surprise for what I could only assume was his age. As he sized up Coy, something seemed off. I just couldn’t put my finger on it, but my otaku senses were detecting another cliché coming up soon.
“You’re seventeen and a coyote, yes?” (Daisuki)
“Yes… sir.” (Coy)
Oh he was getting nervous.
“Then I have one more request. Mind meeting with my daughter?” (Daisuke)
“Wait… what, sir?” (Coy)
Wow… he can even say his catchphrase in a respectable manner? But why meet with the daughter? And why am I not getting a harem route flag?
“Just one thing that only she can confirm. Nakano, summon Nagisa for me.” (Daisuke)
“As you wish, Daisuke-sama.” (Nakono)
After doing a quick bow, she left and came back with another woman. However… this woman was older than I expected. She wasn’t too old like Daisuke, but she was definitely older than everyone else in the room. She was about my height, and wore her dark ginger hair down. She also had on a beautiful navy blue kimono with an ocean wave-like design. But… she also looked familiar. Like I had seen her face somewhere before, just a younger version. She then walked up to Coy and looked like she could have a heart attack.
“Father… is this really him?” (Nagisa)
“Wait.. what?” (Coy)
“Yeah… that bastard was telling the truth.” (Daisuke)
“Wait… what’s going on?” (Coy)
“Oh… how I missed you.” (Nagisa)
She then hugged him tightly. Everyone including myself were in confusion on what was going on. Coy being the most confused.
“Wait… who are you?” (Coy)
“I am your mother, Hayate.” (Nagisa)
After Note: And that was chapter 15, folks. Yeah, Ritme believe it or not is based on pre-Meiji era Japan. To be honest, I didn’t have that idea in the beginning. I didn’t have too much outlined when I started writing this novel. When I started the personal glossary that was lost the first time I had issues with my PC, it just popped into my head that I needed a country that’s kinda Japanese. And what better twist than it being the one that Coy’s people are from? The reason why the Japanese written language is used in Ritme will be explained soon though.
As for the song this chapter is named after, it’s from Red Dead Redemption’s soundtrack. I fell in love with this and the other songs with lyrics when I first heard them. Heck, I bought the vinyl record from Rockstar Games.
As for other reading, Reigo-senpai dished out the translation of Tsuki ga Michibiku Isekai Douchuu chapter 114 last night.