“A Berith raiding strategy exists.”
The place where Berith was summoned was too far from the empire. The empire had little room to intervene, and the military power of ordinary kingdoms couldn’t bear Berith’s power. In order to minimize the damage, players had to move and raid Berith.
However, it was impossible. In this case, half the continent would really be destroyed. Hundreds of billions of quests would be permanently destroyed, and hundreds of millions of players would lose what they had built up. Was this really what the S.A Group wanted?
Some intellectuals weren’t convinced. The S.A Group also hoped for Berith to be raided and analyzed that they should’ve arranged a strategy.
“The 33 great demons are based on Solomon’s 72 demons.”
The fact that the 1st great demon was Baal and the existence of Belial and Berith were obvious proofs of this. Not all 33 great demons might have the same settings as the 72 demons of Solomon, but many of the great demons were created the same or had slightly modified configurations as Solomon’s 72 demons. The Berith depicted in Solomon’s 72 demons was a target that could be controlled by the ‘Magic Ring.’
“We will be able to drive Berith out with the Magic Ring. The balance makes it impossible for a player to control a great demon, so we can’t completely control Berith. Still, we should be able to command him to return to hell.”
“How can we get that Magic Ring?”
“We should make it.”
“How can one player make an item that drives away a great demon?”
“It will be easy to make if we cooperate.”
At the boundaries between the ruined Rotemon Kingdom and the Haken Kingdom, the 1st ranked alchemist Zelgah had gathered the players of the Haken Kingdom to defend their country. People were angry.
“Alchemy and lies. We know that Berith’s power is consistent with the depiction of Solomon’s 72 demons, but the ranks are different. Berith is 28th in the 72 demons of the Lesser Key of Solomon while he is 22nd in Satisfy. It means there is some variation in the setting.”
They couldn’t be sure if Berith still had the same weakness.
“What if the Magic Ring doesn’t work? What do you intend to do then?”
The 5,000 players gathered here hadn’t come to play around. They were here so that they would not lose their home kingdom where they had been active for a long time. The players were determined to sacrifice their lives in order not to lose their precious relationships and assets.
From their position, Zelgah was seen as a scammer. He was trying to take advantage of the desperate people who were on the edge of a cliff.
“Moreover, you need our cooperation to make the ring? What? Should we give you money?”
The players showed obvious hostility, but Zelgah wasn’t shaken. Their suspicions were natural and their reactions were within the range of his expectations. Zelgah said calmly, “No, I don’t want your money. The material needed to make the Magic Ring is the Stone of Life. It is the ultimate alchemy stone that can’t be valued.”
The Stone of Life—there were many people who had heard of it, even if they weren’t alchemists.
The stunned people soon regained their senses. Then they sent even more explicit hostility toward Zelgah.
“You aren’t a scammer trying to fool us but a madman playing with us. The 1st ranked alchemist? You can only use low-grade alchemy. It’s that why you don’t have any pride as a ranker?”
They didn’t know what the Stone of Life was exactly. According to what they had heard, it was a universal alchemy stone that was almost a fantasy. Yet the material of the Magic Ring was the Stone of Life...? It was like saying they couldn’t make the Magic Ring. This meant Zelgah didn’t know how to raid Berith to begin with. He was just making fun of them.
Some of the players started to grab their weapons. It was to condemn Zelgah. Still, Zelgah remained calm. “Did you know that a few months ago, Mad Dog Agnus was going around murdering accessory makers in each country? The Overgeared Guild revealed that he was framed, but it was obvious that Agnus was looking for them.”
“What the hell are you talking about?”
How did the story that began with Berith lead to Agnus? It was a stupid way of talking. Zelgah threw decisive words at the frowning players, “It was to make the Stone of Life.”
“Agnus has the Stone of Life. According to the information I’ve obtained, Agnus is currently in the Haken Kingdom.”
“Of course, it would be impossible to take the Stone of Life from Agnus. However, there is a way to get him to do it himself.” Zelgah looked around at the 5,000 players. “We can use the justification that the world needs the Stone of Life. Berith is threatening 2 billion players. All the players in the world will start crying out to Agnus for the Stone of Life, and it won’t be possible for him to endure the pressure.”
Moving public opinion was simple. Zelgah’s argument was reasonable. Agnus just had to give up one thing and they could raid Berith. The moment this news was announced, people would start pressuring Agnus. None of the 5,000 players gathered here had to take any risks.
It was a great way to do it. However, this was on the premise that the Magic Ring would really work.
“Let’s say Agnus yields the Stone of Life. Then what if the Magic Ring doesn’t work?”
“In that case, I will bear all the blame and violence. You don’t have to worry.”
It was a chance to blow their nose without touching it. Even if nothing was blown out, there wouldn’t be a problem.
“...Hrmm.” After thinking about it, they made a decision. “Okay. We will tell the world about how to raid Berith and make the demand that Agnus yield the Stone of Life. On the other hand, you will bear all responsibility for subsequent problems.”
“Of course. You can rest assured about that part. I don’t have the power to go against you anyway.”
(Haken Kingdom players in crisis, find out how to get rid of Great Demon Berith!)
(The strategy of the Great Demon Berith raid is the ‘Magic Ring’.)
(The material needed to make the Magic Ring is the Stone of Life.)
(The Stone of Life turns out to be possessed by Agnus.)
(The campaign of thousands of players have started... They are demanding for Agnus to yield the Stone of Life.)
(Agnus hasn’t expressed any stance.)
(The accusations toward Agnus are becoming fiercer every day.)
A huge 5,000 people contacted the media and used all means and methods to move public opinion. The media from countries all over the world started to mention the Berith strategy, the Stone of Life, and Agnus. It didn’t matter if the Berith strategy was real.
The players were just looking forward to the possibility, and the media was happy to report it. The high-quality topic boosted the enthusiasm of the media. If the attack strategy turned out to be wrong, it wasn’t the public or the media who would suffer. They cornered Agnus without hesitation. It would be natural for him to give up the Stone of Life.
On the outskirts of Innsbruck, Austria...
“Uhhhh...” Agnus sat alone in a lonely ancient castle, with his trembling body wrapped in a blanket. He was a sinner without knowing why. In the past and even now, he had to endure the contempt and reproach that people sent toward him.
Everyone hated him. There was no one he could rely on. He was alone. Reminded of this reality, Agnus trembled with fear and horror. He didn’t understand why he had to go through this again and was terrified by the emptiness of his heart. Then suddenly...
“Why...” He questioned it. Why should he be a target? He wasn’t going to be weak anymore. There was no reason for him to succumb to violence without reason.
Agnus raised his body and approached the capsule that he had been away from for a few days. His body was now trembling with rage, not terror. It was anger toward the entire world for persecuting him and trying to take away what was his.
“Wow, really... I sat down with a bunch of creeps.”
Those who would sacrifice a minority under the name of the majority... He witnessed a herd that hid behind the name of the ‘masses’ and forced sacrifices on others. In this case, the theory that ‘human nature is fundamentally evil’ came to mind. It was disgusting to see the players chanting Agnus’ name due to the uncertain solution of the Stone of Life. The discomfort simmering inside him made him feel disgusted.
Zibal—who deserted his unit on the magic machine, Raiders—arrived at his home, the Haken Kingdom, after a few days but lost his burning sense of duty. Tens of thousands of players were gathered under the kingdom’s walls. What right did they have to call for Agnus to sacrifice the Stone of Life for the sake of humanity? Why couldn’t they think of raiding Berith directly with such enthusiasm?
Zibal shook his head.
“Zibal! You really came!” An old friend came up and hugged him. It was Earl Flenitium—a person who had fought together with Zibal when he was a noble of the Haken Kingdom, even though he was a NPC. At first, Earl Flenitium was just a target Zibal recognized as part of the quest, but he later became a valuable friend. The fact that the earl’s life was finite caused Zibal to feel anxiety and sorrow.
“It is because of this great demon that my home is in crisis. Of course, I should come. Is everybody gathered?"
“Everyone is here apart from Marquis Yulan, who is protecting the king. This place is so raucous. We should head to my mansion.”
“Um...” Zibal walked with Earl Flenitium and felt the chaos of the kingdom. The people showed a variety of reactions to the fact that the fearsome great demon was approaching. Young parents learned to use spears to protect their children while young children dressed in military uniforms to protect their old parents. Then there were others who just sat down and sobbed. Could he really protect them?
Frankly, Zibal had no confidence of that. The end of the already ruined Rotemon Kingdom was terrible. The great demon Berith was a formidable opponent. However, Zibal wanted to fight. If even he turned away from them, the people of the Haken Kingdom would die without a single bit of hope.
Was it due to the desperate situation...? Zibal kept wanting to rely on someone. He wanted a person stronger than him to fight with him. The one who came to mind was Grid—a person who had frustrated him many times. Why did the person Zibal usually hated come to mind now? It was because he acknowledged Grid’s skills.
“I’m past my prime now.”
Zibal made a bittersweet smile. He was never weak. In fact, he was much stronger than when he was the leader of the Seven Guilds and had shouted that he would be the best. Nevertheless, Grid was a special existence.