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<“You … you’re not like any other human in this world, are you?”> the tanto girl asks between breaths.

“I don’t know what makes one ‘like any other human,’ I just know that I’m a Brawler just trying to get by,” I answer low enough that no others would hear me. From an outsider’s perspective, I may look like I’m talking to myself like a crazy loner … though that sadly describes a little of who I am anyway, so what difference would this make?

<“Ha ha … I know you’re serious, but I can’t help but laugh at that.”>

“Have you finally calmed down?”

<“Better than that, for a moment, I thought I had a body again with how much you turned me on back there. I feel like I finally woke up from this madness from Immortals know how long—”>

“You … you bastard!”

I jolt my head to the only group standing out here other than me. There I see Ren being held captive with a knife to her throat by the pathetic so-called leader that led everyone to this mess in the first place, Rasholl.

“Ren!”

“Mr. Jinma!”

“You … you’re just a shirtless punk! How could a shithead like you be able to wield the cursed tanto?! How do you even have those eyes?! Why aren’t you even on our side?!”

“Let her go—!”

“One step and the bitch gets it!”

“Glk!” Rasholl pokes his knife into Ren’s neck a little, drawing blood.

“You mongrel …” Ms. Gallofree growls.

“Now, here’s what’s going to happen …”

<“Psst, hey, Jinma, right? Can you try speaking to me with your mind?”> the tanto girl asks me.

Keeping my eyes on the man but zoning out on his bargain, I set my mind to the girl. What’s up?

<“You can use Curse Magic, right? And going by your most recent memories, it looks like you watched that Monk use Darkness Manipulation in your fight with him earlier. In fact, you even used it just moments ago when you made that long as shit blade.”>

I did? I don’t even know how I did it, it just happened. You got an idea that involves using it?

<“Dude, if you’re able to do that much on your first try by whatever that was, you should be able to do this. Listen closely on what you should do here and I’ll help you how to hone that skill in a moment …”>

I carefully listen in on the tanto girl’s plan while pretending to pay attention to Rasholl.

“Hey! I’m speaking to you, punk! So, what’s it gonna be?!” Rasholl exclaims. I honestly had no idea what he just said, but it’s not like he’s gonna be true to holding this bargain if he’s from someone like White Rapture, right?

Instead, I concentrate on a certain point behind him like Nyra instructed. “Can I uh … just ask one little thing?”

“What.”

“Which would you rather pick? Right, or left?”

My question sounded so out of place and vague that along with Rasholl, the others, even Ren, give me a look like I’ve gone insane. Well, with how my eyes are right now, I don’t blame them.

“Uh … right?” Despite it coming from nowhere, Rasholl still answered.

My ‘Sadistic Smile’ grows. “Okay~, right side it is, then~.”

Coming suddenly from behind, a purplish-black tendril wraps itself around Rasholl’s right arm that’s holding the knife to Ren’s throat.

“What the—?!”

KOKI KOKI!

“Gaaaauuugh!”

In two quick movements, the tendril straightens and pulls Rasholl’s arm away from Ren, dislocating it from its socket, followed by bending it back unnaturally enough to break it entirely. With the knife dropped and grip loosened, Ren takes the chance to get away from him, as do the others.

Three more tendrils appear from behind him to grab each of his remaining limbs, stretch them out, and hold him aloft.

“What’s … what’s going on?! Is this—”

“Darkness Manipulation? Why yes, it is,” I answer him while taking a piece of a corpse’s clothes and use it to wipe the blood off of the tanto. “Picked it up from your second-in-command earlier and got some help from my new friend I’m cleaning here to make it possible. Did you know you could control the darkness from other people’s shadows when its skill is at a high enough level? That’s how you’re in that situation. Now, where was I? Oh, yes, I think there’s still your right leg I need to break next.”

Koki!

“Gaaaaahahaaaaugh!” he screams in agonizing pain; the others flinch from seeing the sight.

“Jinma! What the hell is going on?! What happened to you?!”

“Ah! Lili! Glad you could join us! You’re just in time for me to finish him off.”

“Please! Please don’t kill me! I swear I’ll leave the White Rapture and never step foot in the Demon-Kin’s Territory again! Just please, spare me!” Rasholl begs.

“Oh, I’m not going to kill you. I’m just going to crush your ego and body enough to twist you into a pretzel before the proper authorities take care of you and whoever’s still alive in your group for questioning. Okay, left limbs next!”

Koki koki koki!

“Gaaaaugh! You bastard! Do you realize you’re betraying your own kin helping these demons?!”

“Yeah, you know, I’ve made a lot of enemies of my own kin back home anyway, so making new ones here, whether they be human, demi, or demon, won’t make much of a difference to me. Even if more of you White Rupture fucks come after me, I’ll take you all out until the entire cult is taken down. Now, if we bend this back here, and that over there, oh, this would be a nice touch …”

More noises of popping and breaking bones as well as Rasholl’s screams fill the air of this now barren city. The girl in the tanto, while moaning from our magic intermingling again, she also laughs hysterically in my head as she takes part and watches him suffer. Finally, the twisted White Rupture leader pretzel is finished, with his briefs pulled over his head in an extreme wedgie for good measure. His face is gross with tears and snot at the end of it all.

“Who … or what are you?” he cries.

“Just know that I’m a guy who doesn’t shit around when it comes to doing business and taking names. Mess with me or the weak, and you’ll be the one crying by the end of it all. I am Jinma Kotori, but the guys back home call me … the Merciless Demon,” I finish while getting in his face with my ‘Sadistic Smile.’ “You have a nice nap now.”

Don!

I finish him off with a hard kick to his face, knocking many teeth out of his skull before he lies there out cold.

Don Don Din Don!

Do-ro-ro Don Din Don!

“… We did it, we won!” Ms. Gallofree exclaims. “The White Rapture has been vanquished!”

From her proclamation, many of the citizens suddenly come out of hiding and cheer as they gather around us.

Am I the only one slightly concerned about the change of tone from the tracks I heard? Wait, no, Ren said that’s supposed to be expected after killing someone, right? I really did take someone’s life today, did I?

<“Yep! And you’re sure as hell that you’ll be taking plenty more in the future! I think we can make a great team, Jinma Kotori!”>

“A … team?” I mutter when I suddenly feel really light-headed.

“Hey, Jinma, your eyes are back to normal. Are you all right?” Lili asks while I have a hand up to my head.

“Never mind me. Ren, how’s your throat? Are you hurt badly?”

“Eh? I-I’m fine, I just need a bandage to stop the bleeding is all.”

“Good, I’m glad. Now I just need to … lie down and …”

<“H-Hey! Don’t get dizzy on me now! Get it together, Jinma! Jin—”>

Ringing fills my ears and my body gets weak as I couldn’t stand any longer. I black out before I could even hit the ground.

~~

““[Mr.] Jinma/Kotori!”” the girls exclaim as Jinma collapses to the ground. Erizora manages to catch him, but he drops the tanto in the process. The crowd of civilians surrounding them went quiet and made space.

“What is wrong with him?! Is he all right?!” Kalline exclaims.

“Give me space,” the blue lizard girl, Umeiyon, demands as she approaches Jinma’s unconscious body and presses two claw-like fingers on his throat. “… He’s still alive, I think he just fainted from exhaustion.” She then checks other places on his body to ascertain something before turning to the lone Werewolf. “Ren, was it? Come here and show me the knife wound, would you?”

Despite the uncertainty, Ren follows her instruction anyways. Umeiyon then peers into the cut before putting one hand over it, and her other on Jinma’s head.

“Heal,” she chants before light emanates from her palms. Ren’s wound quickly closes while no distinguishable changes are found on Jinma’s body. She does this for a couple seconds before the lights fade. “I healed most of your HP, closed any visible wounds, and recovered the muscles from fatigue. It seems I cannot erase any scars that were made from the cursed tanto, but he should be fine by the time he wakes up.”

“That is some Holy Magic,” Lili says with widened eyes.

“Um … thank you very much for helping me and Master, Ms. Lizardman,” Ren thanks before bowing to her.

““Master?!”” Erizora, Lili, and Kalline exclaim.

“Think nothing of it.” Umeiyon glances over to the unconscious Jinma before giving a smirk. “Jinma Kotori, was it? He has shown me many interesting things tonight. When he wakes up, give him a message that Umeiyon wishes to speak with him in private. I’ll be around the city in daylight waiting for him. Until then, I wish you luck in your city’s reparations.”

Byo!

At everyone’s shock, Umeiyon leaps high in the air and makes a break for it by jumping from rooftop to rooftop.

“… What a peculiar demon we have here,” Kalline says.

“Hey, that guy was in control of himself while using the cursed weapon, right? Is this safe to—”

“Do not touch that dagger!”

A mature woman’s voice interrupts a male passerby before a purple snake circles around the tanto on the ground. It hisses and bares its fangs, scaring him away.

“Th-That snake!”

“Lady Tephalia! Thou hast returned!” Kalline exclaims as she quickly kneels down the best a Centaur could do.

The other civilians follow her lead and clear a path for a violet-headed woman with the body of a snake from the hips down and like-colored scales slithering to the center of the crowd. Though the clothing is a simple dress that drapes past her hips, its gold trimmings and stitching give it a regal air that dignifies the Lamia’s current position as the lord in the city of Dondegarm.

“Please pardon my rudeness, but I thought thou would not come back until midday tomorrow, Lady Tephalia,” Kalline says.

“The moment my familiars spotted the suspicious group that was the White Rapture approaching my city, I cut my meeting short to get back here as soon as possible. You have done well to observe these events, Damian.”

“My pleasure, Missstressss,” the snake responds while bowing his head.

Tephalia then pulls out a unique glove made of wrappings that are riddled with charm scriptures and slips it on before picking up the cursed tanto with caution. “The cursed weapon of misfortune will be under my custody until further notice! In the meantime, this is no time to dawdle! Put out any remaining fires in the city, gather the corpses and the wounded that require medical treatment, make sure every resident is accounted for, and for the Immortals’ sake, bring this human a shirt before he gets any colder!” she orders while pointing to Jinma still in Erizora’s arms.

““Yes, ma’am!”” the majority of the crowd exclaims before they went about their tasks.

“Uh, I can quickly make some clothes, but what will you do with Jinma?” Lili asks.

“Do not worry, he is not in trouble, but I must have him on watch in my residence until he wakes up. I must question and judge his motives for myself.”

“U-Um! Please let me be by Master’s side, Lady Tephalia!” Ren exclaims while prostrating to the Lamia lord. “I do not mean to doubt your words, but Master saved my life! I would feel much better if I protect him at his side until he wakes up!”

“Same goes for me!” Erizora exclaims while bowing her head and keeping Jinma’s unconscious body steady. “I know my body can take many more hits and labor than Ren would while he’s under my watch! Please, let us both give him our best protection!”

“… Are you both under this man’s ownership? Let me see the certifications.”

““…”” The two of them couldn’t do what she requested, but they don’t know how else to respond.

“A moment of your time, Milady!”

““Mistress Carmen!”” Ren and Erizora exclaim as they watch their slave merchant approach Tephalia.

Carmen removes her hat and bows to the lord. “These girls are under my ownership as their slave merchant. Mr. Kotori helped break me and my slaves out of the cult’s captivity before we could join in the resistance. If these girls are willing, I believe we can have something arranged to have my debt to him be paid …”

Unknown to the entirety of the group as they talk amongst themselves, including the unconscious Jinma, many notices only he could see appear in front of him.

[You have now reached ‘Slugger Style’ LV 6!

[You have now reached ‘Sadistic Smile’ LV 4!

[You have now reached ‘Slash LV 4—

[You have now reached ‘Wave Slash LV 4—

[Override adjustment required; ‘Slash LV 4’ and ‘Wave Slash LV 4’ have conjoined and now become ‘Demon’s Slash LV 4.’

[You have now learned ‘Demon’s Slash’ LV 4!

[You have now reached ‘Curse Magic’ LV 4!

[You have now learned ‘Darkness Manipulation LV 4’!

[Conditions met. The skill, ‘Devil Eyes*’ is now visible.

[You have now reached ‘Focus’ LV 10!

[The skill, ‘Focus,’ has reached maximum level of mastery and will now evolve to ‘Hyper Perception.’

[You have now reached ‘Hyper Perception’ LV 4!

[You have now learned ‘Magic Sense*’!

[You have achieved the ‘Torture Expert’ title!

[You have now learned ‘Mutilation*’!

[You have achieved the ‘Monster Genocider’ title!

[You have now learned ‘Monster Bonus*!’

[You have achieved the ‘Merciless Demon’ title!]

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About the author

Orange_Rain

  • United States

Bio: Hello and welcome. You may call me Orange Rain, and I looooove orange soda.

I not only like to read novels of many kinds, but I also like to write them. The stories published here will be in webnovel.com as well, so if you can, I'd appreciate it if you could support me on both platforms. I also like to read any professional critiques people may have on my works in order for me to become a better writer.

Thank you for your time, and I hope you'll enjoy what I have in store.

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