When faced with situations that are too unconventional, people usually tend to panic.
That was exactly the situation with Gis now.
He voice felt struck as he looked at Cloud stupidly.
After some time, as he regained consciousness, he realized that he had been teased.
Cloud, who was punched straight on his face by Gis, was thrown 5 meters back in the air.
Cloud fell on the floor and rolled over.
Gis hared right away and squarely kicked on Cloud’s stomach.
Cloud’s waist arched like a stretched bow.
“You bastard who do you think you are! Ya know who you talking sh!t with?!”
Every time he kicked and stepped on him, he heard a crunching, crackling sound.
Even though Cloud’s body was being broken in real time, Gis’s mind just refused to cool down.
It was strange.
Usually hitting like this will relieve his mind, but no matter how much he hit this guy, that fucking annoying feeling didn’t go away.
Gis soon realized.
Usually, they cry and beg for their pitiful lives even if he only delivers a light beating.
Humans are creatures that are vulnerable to pain.
And Gis is the type of person who can feels appeased whenever he sees such an unsightly appearance.
However, Cloud who was being thrashed right now was different from those ordinary bastards.
No matter how hard he punched or kicked him, even if his bones were broken and his internal organs left ruptured, he didn’t leak even a single moan.
Why is that?
Cloud did neither avoid nor tried to block his kicks.
It was like, as if, as if some mature adults comforting their children.
And Gis definitely didn’t like that previous pitying look on his face.
‘Should I just kill him?’
It was the moment when Gis, who had been caught up in a murderous impulse, was about to kick Cloud’s neck.
Neria intervened in between them.
Thanks to that, the kick that tried to break Cloud’s neck had to be stopped.
Gis glared at Neria in vehemence.
“What are you—fucking trying to do?”
“What are you doing!? Isn’t this different from what you promised?”
Neria faced Gis, covering Cloud behind her back.
Seemingly trying to be protect Cloud.
Gis stifled a smirk.
“Fuhuhu, you’ve already betrayed that bastard as much as you could, and now you’re pretending to have care for him?”
“If you don’t have anything to say, piss off.
For I’m going to end it off with that bastard.”
“That’s not going to happen.”
It was the moment when Gis was about to push Neria away.
Lorian grabbed Gis by his shoulder and pulled him back—to make Gis’ brow furrowed with hostility.
“You wanna pick a fight?”
“Why don’t you just look around for once before you try to even get mad?”
Lorian pointed to the left with a chin gesture.
There, the circles of nobles were gathered, murmuring amongst themselves, although he couldn’t hear what they were talking about, the atmosphere did not look quite right.
No matter how strong he is now, even if others respects the strong Gis more than the weak Cloud, the fact that he comes from a humble background that is no different from Cloud, doesn’t change.
No, in fact, he was from slums, so one can say that was even dirtier in a way.
And such a guy assaults a fellow Hero at the continent’s most reputed social banquet?
Meanwhile, Cloud who doesn’t even resist while the aggressor continues, from a viewer’s point of view anyone would be disgusted.
It was natural for these nobles to be offended by his barbaric behavior and to babble amongst themselves.
“Others are uncomfortable with your brutal violence.”
“Brutal violence? Don’t be ridiculous! That motherfucker just insulted me by bringing in my mother.”
The murmurs of nobles grew louder.
However, the negative public opinion toward Gis did not change in slightest.
“Insult? And Cloud? You sure sound funny.”
Cloud is of low origin and a figure of incompetence.
However, he is a good-natured and caring human being.
Although the nobles ignored him, they were well aware of his personality.
That’s why they took Gis’ words for an aggressor’s pitiful lies.
‘This bastard… he definitely heard it.’
No matter how low was the whisper, Lorian would have heard it.
But he shamelessly pretended as if he didn’t, labelling him in bad light.
“Haven’t you already achieved your purpose? I hope you don’t make any more of this situation.”
“Yeah, my purpose has been achieved.”
Gis threw away Lorian’s hand with a displeased expression.
If Gis stole Cloud’s party members because of his own twisted desires, Lorian’s was in order to keep Cloud in check.
At first, he was just going to shake up the things a little bit, but somehow, things worked out too well.
So Lorian didn’t want his hardwork to be ruined by escalating this matter any further.
“Shouldn’t you be content by now, with all that beating?”
What if I say no?”
“Then I will deal with you on his behalf.
In the form of a duel.”
When Lorian drew his ceremonial sword, cheers erupted from among the nobles.
At this moment, the good and the bad were clearly divided.
Gis, the villain, had created a situation where it was his loss regardless of either he won or lost.
“….you fucking dirty bastard.”
Gis clicked his tongue and hurtled out of the venue with a displeased expression.
As soon as he left, Ophelia hurriedly ran towards Cloud.
“Hero! Are you okay?”
That’s what she asked, but in no way he looked in a good condition to her.
Neria, who looked with sad eyes, urged urgently.
“Ophelia, do the treatment, quick!”
Cloud raised his upper body languidly.
Neria and Ophelia’s eyes widened, but he didn’t care and looked at his own body.
It was a total mess.
The shoulder was hanging limpidly and his knee was bent in a inhuman direction, and there seemed to be quite a bit of internal bleeding too.
Cloud pulled his dislocated right shoulder first.
He placed his left hand on his shoulder and wrested with a strong force—his shoulder blades aligned with a staunch crackling sound.
The broken leg was grabbed and gyrated to the original direction.
He moved around until the broken bones were positioned in right places, and then released his hand snugly.
Now heal me.”
“…Y, Yes? A-Ah, yes…”
Ophelia felt a little creepy for some reason and quickly used a heal on Cloud.
* * *
Our team was disbanded, and so I thought it was over.
Atleast such was the case in my original world until I was dragged here.
But it didn’t seem to be the case here.
“Then I’ll break the party connection.
It may hurt a little.”
An old man with gray hair walked up to me and stood behind me.
In this world, there was a pretty tricky procedure to form and disband a party.
When you form a party, you have to register that person’s blood on the status engraved on your back, and when you break up, you cover it with your own blood and wipe it off.
The reason for doing this procedure is to share experience points that come from killing monsters.
But, of course, there was no way I could reach out correctly to my back with my own hand.
So I had to get help from others.
The person who is rubbing off the party connection on my back is one of the butlers of the Imperial Palace.
The three heroines will be assisted by maids in another room.
I could feel a cold liquid on my back.
Instead of a tingling sensation, there was a stinging and throbbing pain.
It was not painful enough to make me grunt though.
I just sat there spacing out, and it was over.
“Can I go now?”
“Yes, the party breakup is complete.”
“Well, see you later then.”
I quickly left the room.
It is said that Emperor always appear in the social banquet a little later than others.
If you try to leave the banquet while the Emperor was there, you would be stopped by the guard, so I thought I’d better get outta here before he showed up.
Fortunately, the room I was in was on the first floor, close to the exit of the Imperial Palace, so it didn’t take long to find my way out.
As I came out of the palace, going down the stairs, another new figure was coming from the other side.
But the face was not unfamiliar.
There was no chance I wouldn’t know.
The woman who is climbing up the stairs right now is the only female Hero among the four Heroes in ‘The Hero’s Party’.
The eldest daughter of an Imperial Duke and also the strongest of the four Heroes.
“Cloud? The banquet isn’t over yet, where are you going?”
As she climbed up the stairs, she looked at me with a puzzled expression on her face.
I want to go back a little earlier today.”
If the food wasn’t even good, what reason was even there for me to be present there?
I passed her and went down the stairs.
Her gaze was fixed on me until I made my way down the stairs.
* * *
Surprisingly, there were bars in this world.
In the dark and cryptic atmosphere, the bartender at the center bar table was wiping the glasses.
The only downside is that there are no cocktails, only wine.
‘Why do you even need a bartender when you only have wine?’
I had a question like that, but I decided to let it slide.
Because the wine tasted excellent.
Compared to the tasteless ale I drank at the inn, this one was damn good!
‘But that beer without carbonation.
What kind of devil made such a thing..?’
After all, something like carbonated drinks don’t exist in this world, sigh.
As soon as I’ll ever returned to Earth, I will drink bottles of coke.
Haa, I still can’t forget that refreshing feeling from back then.
I really wanted a coke.
I drank the rest of the wine at once.
The glass, which had been grayish-white before, reflected a transparent light.
It’s strange that glasses are so developed in comparison.
“If you continue to drink like that, you will wake up sick tomorrow.”
The woman who came to sit down next to me commented.
When I turned my head, I saw a gorgeous woman with flaming red hair tied in a ponytail.
The dark atmosphere of the bar did not detract her beautiful appearance in the least, though she was dressed in men’s clothing, with a reddish golden tailcoat on her, it couldn’t hide her womanly sensual body in the slightest.
“Red? Or white?”
“That’s quite unexpected.
I thought you would choose red.”
“Why did you think so?”
“Because you are red, aren’t you?”
I said, pointing at her red hair.
To which she had an absurd look on her face.
“Aren’t you also drinking white wine with the same red hair?”
“This and that are different.”
I didn’t originally had red hair.
Not knowing that, she smiled.
“I’m glad that you still have the energy to joke around.”
The bartender placed a glass of white wine in front of Frillite.
“I wasn’t joking, it’s the truth.
More than that, what are you doing here, Frillite? I don’t think it’s time for the social banquet to end yet.”
Frillite de Perdiac.
As a Hero and the successor of the most powerful family located near the borders of the Empire, she should have been shining in the banquet this time.
Not like drinking some cheap wine in an underground bar like me.
Frillite picked the glass and twirled it, the grayish-white wine rippled like waves.
Even so, not a single drop of wine spilled out of the glass.
“I heard what happened today.”
She stopped twirling the glass and brought it to her lips.
The wine flowed down endlessly in one gulp.
Even though it was nothing more than simply drinking wine, there was dignity in that simple action as well.
“Didn’t you just say earlier that I will get sick drinking like that?”
“Sometimes one has to drink like this to feel better.”
Then soon put on a serious expression.
“I never thought those idiots would do something like that.
It was my negligence.”
Now, why is this your negligence?”
“I should have been a little more careful.
I couldn’t do that because I was busy subjugating monsters but I cannot just side myself using this as an excuse.
So it’s my fault.”
Frillite drank the wine the bartender had poured again.
Those who didn’t know will find it strange, but I knew why she was here.
It’s not because of personal friendship.
There’s almost no contact between Cloud and her.
So, there is only one reason why she cares so much about Cloud.
He is a Hero.
Frillite is worried that Cloud might lose his inner self because of this incident.
The four Heroes must work together to seal the enemy of mankind, the Demon King.
—A legend that circulates on this continent.
She didn’t want anything to break it this time around.
You might think why is some random legend so important, is it necessary that only the Heroes should defeat the Demon King, anybody else can do it too.
Then, that’s a wrong idea.
A Hero can grow endlessly without being impeded by the growth limit.
It means that you can break through your limits as a human being.
In other words, a Hero is like a humanoid nuclear weapon.
Such Heros are supported one each by each of the four human countries except the Principality.
But what if for some reasons the Hero of a particular country disappears?
As it is, the balance between the countries collapses.
The gap will be irreversibly widened with time, and the country that has lost its Hero may eventually go into ruin.
Frillite is worried about that happening.
Seriously, I’m telling you—she is a daughter who had been raised under the tutelage of a strict but upright father.
“I don’t know how it feels to be separated from colleagues you were with all this time.
I honestly can’t even fathom.”
“Nevertheless, I hope you don’t break.”
“Nay, I don’t break.”
“I am glad, you are a stronger man than I thought.
Anyway, it’s going to take quite some time to find some new colleagues for you.
I will help you with that, there are many people with outstanding talent in our Empire—”
“No need for that.”
Frillite, who had easily moved on despite my short answers, stopped.
Then she looked at me with seriously encouraging eyes.
“I know it’s hard mentally.
But courage and stubbornness are different things.”
“I already know that..?”
“Then take my favor.
Even if it’s burdensome, it’s for your own good.”
Oh man, this persistent chic.
Why are pushing me some unknown team mates when yourself travel alone?”
“Yeah, maybe it’s because you have that skill.
But I tell you, I’m pretty good too.
I also like going alone, so don’t mind me.”
Frillite was unable to speak for a while, then she sighed deeply.
She snatched the bottle of wine from the bartender’s hands and drank it in gulps.
Cool, that’s a one-shot.
I smiled and suddenly remembered something I had forgotten.
‘Come to think of it, she had no CG in the game.’
She was a very significant character in her own rights, but there was only some vague news that she had went missing after going in the underworld, there were no separate event scenes on her.
She emptied an entire bottle and placed it down on the table.
I gave her a fitting round of applause.
“That was a cool move, haha.”
“…it must have been because I got a little tipsy, ugh.
I will talk to you again another time, after I’m sober.”
She reached out in between her arms and pulled out a heavy purse and threw it at the bartender.
“With this, deduct the cost of my drink, what this man drank, and what he will further drink.
I don’t think there will be any shortage.”
The bartender opened the purse slightly and nodded eagerly with wide-open eyes.
“Then next time.”
She glanced at me once, then turned her back and left the bar.
My, that was really cool.
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