A Demon Lord’s Tale: Dungeons, Monster Girls, and Heartwarming Bliss
Let’s Use Magic!
“Hmmm…” I propped my face up with one of the arms I had resting on my knees as I frowned . I was seated upon the throne, which I’d slowly become accustomed to .
“What is the matter?” Lefi asked . “You appear awfully focused for a man staring off into the void . ”The dragon girl stopped poking Shii to give me a dubious stare . She’d been complimenting the slime just a minute prior; she mentioned that she found it surprisingly adorable . Despite living for over a thousand years, today was the first she’d ever interacted with a slime .
“It’s nothing spe—Wait, did you just say the void?”
Can she not see the menu?
“Indeed . It appears as if you are flying off into the distance in a manner akin to that of a fool . The only conclusion I can possibly draw is that you are gazing upon your status, as I do recall you mentioning that you had the analyze skill,” said Lefi . She nodded as she spoke, as if coming to some sort of understanding .
“You make it sound like you have it too . ”
“I do . It is quite the convenient skill . Leveling it has allowed me to fully comprehend everything I had ever needed regardless of the circumstance . I’m sure it would serve you the same . It is unfortunate that there have only ever been a mere handful of individuals that have come to understand its value . Very few have ever fully leveled the skill . ”
“Wait, did you not know I was a demon lord until after you entered the dungeon? Wouldn’t analyze have let you figure that out earlier?”
“You are correct,” said Lefi with a nod . “But that is only because I chose not to activate the skill . I assumed you to be just another weak and worthless demon that thoughtlessly invaded my territory . I would have realized that you were more than that when you offered to strike a deal, but I was unable . My thoughts had all been swept away by the sweet scent and flavour of the chocolate you presented me . I’d not the chance to give a second thought to your identity . ”
“I see . ”
“Speaking of chocolate, I would like some . ”
“You’re going to get cavities if you eat that much chocolate . ”
“What are you saying? I am an ancient dragon . Abnormal status conditions do not affect me,” said Lefi, as if she were stating the most obvious thing in the world .
Wait, so cavities are treated like status effects?
I opened the catalogue, purchased a bag of sweets, and chucked in Lefi’s general direction .
“Hmmm? What are these?” Lefi raised one of her brows in confusion .
“Cookies . ”
“How interesting . ” The Supreme Dragon opened the bag and popped one of the sweet treats into her mouth . “Mmmrrpphh! How delectable!”
That “Mmmrrphh” though .
“Relocating was a splendid choice . The food here is delicious and the bedding is comfortable . I knew not that living in a human form was this convenient and comfortable . ”
Seeing the childish, happy expression that appeared on Lefi’s face as she munched through the cookies I presented her caused a wry smile to show on my own .
Whew . I’m glad she likes the cookies . A full bag of cookies is cheaper than a bar of chocolate and contains a whole bunch more stuff . It’s much more cost efficient .
“So I take it you are contemplating your stats?”
“Yeah . I was just thinking that I kinda want to learn how to use magic . Magic’s my highest stat, so I’d imagine I’d probably be able to cast stuff if I figured out how . ”One of the biggest factors that contributed to my desire to cast magic was the gruesome scene that followed the Cerberus’ death . Though my physical stats seemed somewhat decent, I couldn’t see myself making use of them . I had spent my past life living in peace; I wasn’t exactly all that keen on blood or gore . More importantly, though I had somehow managed to defeat the three headed wolf, I highly doubted that I would continue to succeed . Monsters far more powerful than the Cerberus were bound to exist, and I highly doubted I would be able to win against them with my physical prowess alone . Likewise, I was fairly certain I would find myself defeated if I attempted to engage a member of the races in physical combat—there was no way a random civilian would find themselves in the midst of a dungeon . The only ones that would challenge me were experienced warriors with much greater mastery over the martial arts than I .
I had to get stronger . Some claimed that there was no need for a demon lord, or any other sort of ruler, to train and become more powerful . They vouched that training was akin to throwing away one’s pride . But as far as I was concerned, every member of the aforementioned group was an idiot that had sealed his downfall in stone . And it was for that reason that I intentionally chose not to rely on the Supreme Dragon . I understood that growing dependent on her would one day come back to bite me in the ass .
Given this world’s harsh nature, there was no reason not to grow more powerful . My magic stat was my highest, and the world I’d been reincarnated in was one filled with magical energy, so I saw no reason not to learn the art of magecraft .
That was, of course, but one school of thought . It was equally valid for me to focus my energies on summoning powerful monsters capable of crushing my foes with ease . But I didn’t . To be honest, there wasn’t any real logic governing my choice . The only reason I’d chosen magic over the monster-based route was because I wanted to use it . That was all .
The only problem was that I lacked the technical know-how . I had absolutely no idea how I was supposed to even begin to cast a spell . I tried firing off a kameham*ha and even tried to stop time by screaming “the w*rld,” but neither approach yielded any results—not that I was expecting them to . Both attempts had just been for kicks . But all jokes aside, the kick I performed netted me the martial arts skill, so I figured that doing something along the lines of casting a spell would net me a skill centered around magic .
The problem is that I don’t even know what magical energy really is .
At first, I thought that I would be able to just feel the mana inside of me in the same manner that I’d somehow managed to feel the dungeon’s mana, but I couldn’t quite get it to work . I tried concentrating and even meditating, but all my attempts had ended in failure . A part of me suspected that I’d only proven unsuccessful because Lefi’s joyful, entertained cries had distracted me and prevented me from truly focusing, but that didn’t quite seem to be it . I believed that it was more likely that I just didn’t have the right kind of approach .
“That is true . Your magic stat does appear to be above average,” said Lefi . “Oh? Your level increased? I assume you defeated a monster or two while I was asleep?”
“Yeah . Oh right, that reminds me . I’ve been meaning to ask you for future reference, but how are my stats?”
“Of course, monsters have different specializations, so it is difficult to provide you a meaningful comparison . I can, however, affirm that all of your individual stats are at least average when compared to the monsters that have made the surrounding area into their territory . Naturally, there are still many far more powerful than you . For example, your stats fail to reach even a single percent of my own . ”Less than 1%!? Holy shit, dude, that’s insane!
Lefi tossed the last cookie into her mouth as I contemplated the sheer extent of her strength . Her expression made it clear that her thoughts failed to align with my own . All she cared about was that there were no longer any cookies for her to snack on; she was wearing a clear expression of disappointment .
“Of course, I mind not teaching you the magical arts . ” She shot a few glances at me as her face lit up with expectation . “But only if you are willing to pay the pri—”
I cut her off by chucking a second bag of cookies straight at her . I didn’t bother saying a word . I could tell from the look in her eyes alone that the bag of sweets I offered her was more than enough to cover my tuition .
“I see that you understand my terms . Very well, I shall make you this century’s most powerful mage!”
Times like this, I really have to appreciate just how easily she’s swayed by her stomach .
 The Kamehameha from Dragon Ball Z . If you don’t know this, I would be surprised . (Joker)
 The World Stand from Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure . Might not know this one . Very weird anime . (Joker)
[2 . 5] How can you not know Jojo!? (ST)