When the light fades I find myself in a dark room. It’s almost completely featureless. There isn’t a single door leading into or out of the room either. The only thing in the room worth noting is a single chair and a table.
sigh “I knew you were going to be trouble as soon as you entered” A calm sullen voice explains
The voice is familiar… is this that odd voice that showed up after the trial?
I remain vigilant as I wait for the voice to continue. There is a high likelihood that I’m going to have to fight my way out of here. From just about anybody’s perspective, I’m totally kidnapping a child right now and an extremely important one at that. I just really wish that my opponent this time isn’t a guardian of an ancient dungeon.
“Just to confirm, you are the Maou correct?” The voice asks
“What?! How do you know about that?!” I ask as my hands reach for my blade
My blade is no longer at my side however. Was it removed when I was teleported?
“I’ve been around for quite some time… You are not the first that I have seen. I’m honestly surprised that humans have not learned a method to identify your kind yet.” The voice continues in an exasperated tone
“Let me ask you then. For what purpose do you intend to use Mana? To control the world? To destroy the humans?” It asks, sounding completely uninterested in the answer
“Hm? I don’t plan on using Mana for anything. In fact I’m still on the fence about whether I should let her come with us.” I answer almost insulted by the question
Even he thinks that I’m trying for world domination! Seriously what did the Maou before me have to do to convince everybody that we are so evil? I’m sure the history books will have pretty skewed info on the subject… I wonder if Gero knows more about it?
“There is no point in lying to me. I have no power to stop you. Mana has complete authority over me. Since you have befriended her, I’m afraid I can no longer stop you.” The voice continues
The general apathy coming from it is beginning to resemble one that has simply given up. It has a slight feel of “Why should I even care? It’s already over right?”.
“Listen, let me make one thing clear: I currently have no qualms with the humans. I also have no desire whatsoever of having to deal with all the world’s problems, so conquering it is out of the picture as well. I understand that the knowledge that Mana has can be pretty dangerous if it gets out… but if she wants to see the outside world then I’m going to let her! I’ve decided that I will protect her! I will fight you too if you’re lying and you intend to keep her locked up here as well!” I proclaim loudly
I’m saying this to myself as well. I’ve been too indecisive as of late! If I don’t make a choice on what path I’m going to take then I’m simply going to run around in circles pointlessly.
“Her knowledge? What possible threat could come from letting what she knows get out?” The voice asks me with confused interest
“What? Isn’t that the reason why she is being protected? If she were to help me find magical items I could easily seek to rule the world with them you know?” I answer confused in turn
What did he think I meant? Is there even more to Mana?
“Pff… pffa, PWAHAHAHAHA! WHAHAHAHAHA! Has this world already become so weak? Time has been so cruel to me! Pfft, but I suppose that’s only fair! Hahahaha!” Suddenly he burst into laughter
His voice has life in it again, it would almost be a heartwarming difference… but there is just a hint of madness in it as well. My head is fighting over whether to be confused, happy, or disturbed by this.
“Then Mana is yours to take! If it is to end, let it end with a bang!” He cheers out happily
“What are you talking about? What’s going to end?” I ask
“I will not accept it!” An all too familiar voice interrupts
“Good to see you too loli-clown.” I say sarcastically in response
“A child as bad as this one could not possibly treat Mana right! She wouldn’t even follow the basic rules! She cheated for Pete’s sake!” He begins to rant frantically completely ignoring my insult
“Simply ask Mana when you wish to leave.” The sullen voice says over him as lights once more begin to form around me
“Wait!” I yell throwing my hand out
I still have so many questions. Who is this voice? What exactly is Mana? What is the purpose of the dungeons?
None of my questions are answered however as the scenery around me becomes a bedroom once more.
I let out a disappointed sigh as I realize that my questions were intentionally dodged. I walk over to the bed to make another attempt at sleep. I pay close attention to Mana as I attempt to slip back in under the covers, but something seems a bit off?
As my eyes finish adjusting to the room I realize what’s wrong. She is crying in her sleep.
“Daddy…” I can hear her softly say
She has been through a lot hasn’t she? She’s going to go through a lot more in the future too.
I put my arms around her and drift off to sleep quickly.
When I wake up, the lights have already illuminated the room.
I suppose this means that it’s morning? A simple clock would work wonders.
On that train of thought I decide to check the clock in my menu. Sure enough it is 7am on the dot. I sit up and lean against the headboard of the bed.
I don’t think I will ever get used to waking up without being tired. Mana is still sleeping so I guess I’ll browse my menu while I wait. Maybe some new skills have popped up.
After a while I looking through my menu I noticed only a few relevant changes. In my skills menu, four new entries popped up.
What is with the question marks? How can I learn a skill that I can’t even apparently understand yet?
The timer I noticed before has also continued to count down. It is now at 216h:58m:26s.