The Lazy King

Volume 2, Chapter 2: Gula’s Starvation, Part 2: Maybe if my Appetite Returns
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Volume 2, Chapter 2: Gula’s Starvation, Part 2: Maybe if my Appetite Returns

A change in the situation always comes abruptly.

Even for a Demon Lord with absurdly wide perception, we cannot see the future.

Last year’s me never even imagined that I would ever lose my hunger, and I never thought it would become this hard to move either.

To demons embracing their longings, those longings were their will to live. Perhaps I never truly understood what that meant until after I revived.

A world without hunger, as if I was seeing a dream, lacked a sense of reality.

While I had found myself in a new world, to me, it didn’t fall short of the depths of hell.

I was in a small town of the Crimson Prison I had reached by chance. And there, I ran out of power. I lost my will to do anything, and spent who knows how long collapsed at some café or another, forgetting an innumerable amount of things.

I’m sure I had a plan. But the black hole drilled into the center of my heart wouldn’t allow it.

Any and everything is but a trifle. To me, my appetite was a desire I could barely stand, but also the highest form of pleasure.

On the table of a dirty casual café, I fell flat. It was an action so pointless in nature I couldn’t even laugh at the Lord of Sloth anymore.

At the start, someone or another tried to talk to me, but perhaps getting tired of me not offering a single action in return, that came to an end all too soon. I also get the feeling I took a few Skills directed at my body as well, but contrary to my state, the Gluttony Skills I had honed over my life nullified all of them.

I’m not hungry at all. Yet still, my power shows no signs of dying out. It won’t decrease. No, more so, even when I’m not eating anything at all, I get the feeling it’s on the rise.

That was one of the few truths I came to learn upon returning from the abyss of death, and it was also something I should have been shocked at.

It’s not like I was simply eating in order to gain power, but when I’m growing stronger without doing anything at all, I somehow feel that all I’ve done up to now has been pointless.

I simply sat, and within the quiet darkness, I thought about its meaning. Without the desire that had always shaken up my existence, I had enough thinking time for my brain to rot.

I even get the feeling that I’ll be able to grasp something given just a little bit more.

But for some reason, today’s been quite noisy.

The sounds. The lights. A somewhat nostalgic wave of magic was coloring my world. Whether I liked it or not, I perceived it all around me.

I wonder if some sort of accident’s transpired. Even for Demons, in times of peace, the towns should have some peace and quiet. Especially with the place I was at not being any sort of major city. It was simply a remote settlement. If I was in the land of a hostile Demon Lord, that would be one thing, but this isn’t the front lines of anything. I can’t imagine who’d attack who here.

But if you turn that around, if it’s a rare occurrence, that means it can happen now and again. Those reckless enough to attack the cities of the Demon Lords allied to the Great Demon King come out regularly.

The information coming through my five senses told me that the town had been dragged into some form of war.

But the power ringing out around me, the forms, and the sounds, with the burden I felt on my body, they were fruitless stimulus.

They’re not at a level where they’ll harm a Demon Lord like me, and it’s not like…

… It’s not like I’ll be able to eat them anyways.

Perhaps someone died. Several sources of power went out, and several of them swelled up.

It was probably the after effect of the blasts. The table supporting my body was blown away, and my body was thrown onto the ground. Again, I’m uninterested.

Having been tossed onto the earth, I stretched out my flawless tongue, and took a taste of the ground.

… It’s not half bad. It’s definitely not bad, but my appetite isn’t whetted at all.

Since my revival, I’ve tried putting various sorts of food before myself. But still, there’s no signs of anything coming back.

It’s not like it’s inedible, but I don’t want to eat it. That feeling was one of a variety that, since my birth, I’d rarely ever tasted.

It’s also not something I felt when I confronted the Lord of Sloth. Those back there were negative feelings, but what I’m feeling right now is surely zero.

Apparently, even non-Gluttony Demons will feel hunger with the passage of time. That information did give me some optimism about my present condition, but I can now say that my current state is of a problem beyond that level.

“… Hah, I wonder what happened… for me to not feel anything to this extent…”

At this point, the hunch that I might not be a Demon anymore started turning into my certainty.

Is this that sort of, ‘truth from a lie’ sort of thing…

But still, what’s with this…

While I was thinking something like that, I was grabbed by the scruff of the neck, and hoisted up. My build isn’t too tall, so I don’t think any large Demon would have too much of a problem doing that, but it’s quite amazing that they were able to do that without saying a single word to me.

The hood that was intercepting the sunlight flew off, and I saw the face of the one who lifted me.

Curling horns that grew at the top of his head, and six eyes were the Demon’s characteristics. And to me, who lost all of my comrades, it was the first familiar face I’d seen in a long time.

Leigie’s subordinate Greed-kun. One of the few existences in this world that I tried, and failed to eat.

But even with one I thought of as tasty before my eyes, I don’t really feel anything.

Greed-kun’s eyes went over my face expressionlessly for a moment. The stare from his six pupils met with mine.

And in the next instant, without saying anything, still without an emotion on his face, Greed-kun chucked me with all of his might.

I was thrown. As if throwing a ball, easily, without hesitation.

How cruel… to throw me away after going through all the trouble of picking me up…

Perhaps he added some spin onto the toss, as my field of vision spun all over the place. On an incredible wind, and an impact great enough to rock my semicircular canals, without any real feelings, I put power into my body for once in a while, waited for the right timing, and made a landing on the ground.

Even if I’ve lost my desire, that’s something irrelevant to Greed-kun.

Hey, at least let my keep my pride. I try not to show my unsightly face, and try to strain my voice, but when it came out, I couldn’t help but think it was tinted with a tired tone.

“… Well, well, well, you sure do some cruel things there… to acquaintances no less…”

“W-w-why the hell are you at a place like this!!?”

“Fufu… I wonder.”

His confusion was enough to make me crack a smile.

Nice reaction. That’s a nice face you’re making there. As always, his appearance is fitting for one called a Demon. Greed-kun’s figure, of course, but also his gestures haven’t changed in the slightest from when I saw him last.

It would be nice if Leigie would give a reaction like that too, but…

“Of all else, I’m the one who’s wondering why you’re at a place like this, Greed-kun… what a coincidence.”

“This sort of coincidence… I don’t need it. Boss, please give me a break already…”

Looks like I’m quite hated. Fufu, even when I just went and devoured his collection a little… What a narrow-minded child.

Well, I doubt I’d even be able to do something like that at this point.

Saved by his reaction, my tension that had been brought down to the lowest possible level rose ever-so-slightly.

I could finally confirm the situation.

I smelled a scent that made my nose twitch.

Greed-kun, and the lone young boy Demon he was shouldering… that’s also a Greed-kun. Fufu, he smells like the type that steals emotions. There aren’t any other Demons around. Like a bubble of air, this entire area’s become completely empty.

But more than that, the problem’s likely the enemy.

Enemy… prey. Nice ring to that.

I turned my eyes to the side.

Two sculpture-like males. Wearing pure white vestments, their large builds boasted a pair of white wings of light on their backs. Heavenly messengers. Showing off their dark intent to kill us all in their silver eyes, these natural enemies of Demon-kind were lined up right in the middle of the Demon World without a moment’s hesitation.

As if one of the two had been replicated, they looked like two peas in a pod. The large presences they wore around themselves were a single widely pronounced symbol of fear to our race.

If you do something bad, the Angels will come for you, the parents say… Fufu.

“Two Angels… Fufu, it sure has been a while since I’ve seen the form of an Angel… it sure is regrettable that I can’t eat them.”

Their light presences, that had so little impurity in them they began to feel unnatural.

Even for someone with a perpetual existence like me, a force I rarely had a chance to meet: high ranking Angels. What’s more, the higher rank of those high ranks.

『Saint Lord』 Class.

This white light eating away at all the surroundings was the polar opposite of the 『Abyss Zone』of Demon Lords.

It must be none other than the 『Paradise Field』 Skill that only Angel Lords possess.

Their Divinity had a nasty nature of wiping away the Mana held by Demons.

In territories under the reign of Angels, we’re unable to wield our powers to our satisfaction.

Both of the Angel’ eyes were directed at me, the unexpected trespasser.

Even if you look at me like that… this isn’t my will, you know. Fufu, I was just kinda thrown, you know.

Yeah, I’ve just been thrown around. If you want someone here to resent, then go after that Greed-kun, okay?

The Angels’ Killing intent, enough to shake one’s soul, gave a jolt to my instincts. It’s not appetite. This must be those battle instincts that other Demons speak about.

Greed-kun called out.

“Zebul, I’ll give you a warning for old time’s sake. It’d be best if you ran! Ki ki ki, taking on two would be tough, even for you.”

Even when you just used me as a projectile, that’s quite mean.

But that may just be my misguided resentment there.

“Fu fu… who do you think you’re speaking to here?”

I’m an undefeated Lord. No, wait, I lost to Leigie, so I’m a once defeated Lord.

In a hundred thousand years of life, one loss. I can’t even remember the amount of things I’ve eaten. Never fleeing, never facing loss.

If you want to call that good luck, then go ahead, but more than that, my Gula disposition let me specialize in offense.

The use of my Skills were accompanied by a sort of uplifting feeling. Without saying anything, I started using them for once in quite a while.

… Fufufu, my bad, Vanity. I’ll be taking these ones.

The black aura of darkness that gathered with me at the center tainted that divinity.

A bottomless black that seemed to devour every color around it, that dark power that seemed to represent hunger itself was, even when its user had lost her desire, in good health.

I washed away that annoying holy air those Angels were spewing all at once, and dyed their white with my black.

The force that wouldn’t permit any resistance was, while I had lost my starvation, the proof I was still a Lord.

To eat up and defile all creation, a Gula Demon’s right.

“I can’t believe it… you ate their Paradise Field!?”

“Fu… I haven’t eaten anything. It’s just that my power was the stronger of the two. That’s all.”

Having their Field destroyed, the Angels’ silver eyes let off a dangerous light.

It wasn’t fear. Simply, their newfound will to fight me let out a slimy light. It wasn’t anything different than what Angel usually embraced whenever they were slaying Demon.

Strong light gathered in the palms of their hands. Unlike that let off by the Demon World’s crimson sun, it was a white light. Without even an incantation, their speed was like lightning, and their flowing movements gave off the impression they were accustom to firing off such bolts.

But I saw through it in an instant. The memories of the war of White and Black still lingered in my mind. Even if they haven’t appeared as of late, the nature of these things wasn’t something I could forget so easily.

Ah, that’s…

I licked my lips. Even when I didn’t have an appetite, I was drooling.

… It sure was fun back then.

A quivering excitement ran from the base of my feet up my spine. All of my memories could be summed up with the word, ‘Tasty.’

That was a wonderful time. It was even regretful that it had to come to an end.

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“Fufu… so you guys are 『Iustitia』 Angels?”

“……!?”

The time from collecting to shooting off their energy was a matter of seconds. Theirs was an attribute designed for rapid fire, and it boasted a high offensive power in order to bring ruin to Demons.

they shot off a light so dense, I couldn’t even keep my eyes open.

And without a chance to dodge, a large impact raced through my body.

An Angel’s power was much different from a Demons. Anyways, it was fast.

Their speed truly rivalled light. No matter how much speed you had, you would be unable to outrun it; it was worthy of the name Heavenly Retribution.

Yep, it was probably worthy of that.

Definitely.

“Fufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufu

fufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufu

fufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufu

fufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufu

fufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufu

fufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufu

fufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufu

fufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufufu”

“…!?”

The light went out.

I can’t stop my laughter.

Along with that killing intent, the angels’ faces had surprise mixed in for a moment. For some reason, without running away, Greed-kun was making himself scarce at the end of the alley, staring at me with his eyes wide open.

There wasn’t a single wound on my body.

“You guys… could it be that you’re idiots? Releasing out an energy attack at a Gula… fufu, there’s something here we like to call sheer stupidity.”

I cast aside the overcoat, which now had a large hold burned into it.

The pitch-black clothing I wore underneath were『Gobbling Garments』 produced through a Gluttony Skill.

Everything’s got to do with affinity. Gluttony was relatively weak against physical attacks, but against magic attacks, it was extremely strong. Even against something made of our natural killer, 『Light』, that fact held true.

The black clothing absorbed all light, as if it were a black hole. Even under the light of the sun, it was nothing but uniform black.

Still… it wasn’t tasty at all. I’m sure it tasted quite fine when I last partook ten thousand years ago, but…

How unfortunate, but there’s nothing to be done.

Even if I’m not to eat, Angels and Demons are opposing forces.

Fufu, how about I hitch a ride on that theory for a while?

I turned the palm of my own hand to the two Angels.

“I’ll show you a darkness that devours all light.”

As if taking those words as a trigger, the Angels’ wings began emitting light once more.

But at that point, I had already fired off my Wave of Starvation. The wave that gradually encroached on them was the hunger my soul thrived of in itself. For the longest time, it was the curse that obeyed my will.

As the light passed through the depths of the darkness, it was eaten up, and faded away.

The bland turned to pure energy, and filled my body. I’m not soft enough to be done in by elementary Skills.

I birthed countless 『Tentacles』 from my body. Because my own two arms had proven insufficient, I became able to create them. They were my hands.

They numbered a hundred. Of course, that number vastly exceeded the Angels’ limbs, and also Greed-kun’s hands.

The Angels’ expressions warped in disgust. Nice expression. That’s a nice face you’re making there.

“Then, I’ll start.”

Ten for movement. The other ninety for attack.

I manipulate my tentacles like whips to swipe at the angels from the side.

Perhaps not in the mood to be touched by them, the two Angels acted in unison. Their wings let off light, and they flew up vertically to avoid.

It was one of their selling points. Something that even lower class Angels possessed without exception- their heavenly wings… their mobility.

And as a Gula Demon with numerous means of attack, regardless of distance, I had a good affinity here.

As I swung one tentacle horizontally, I extended another up high, and brought it down at them.

And I extend another. Once you get to my level, the tentacles’ numbers and lengths can be freely manipulated and changed.

For the one coming at them from above, the Angels barely dodged to the said.

As they dodged, from the palms of their hands, they shot of large Novas, several times the power of their previous attack.

The balls of light numbered in the dozens. Masses of destructive energy cause the townscape to change. They shot them off without properly deciding a target, so they hit building after building, causing their collapse.

The ground shook greatly. Power great enough to alter the terrain. But with an increase in destructive power, the speed dropped off. As the came at me with speeds much lower than their light, there wasn’t the space for me to dodge.

I packed power into the tentacles at my feet, and had them bore into the ground.

And I avoided them all. Within my Zone, I could perceive everything. I understood the area, and for the balls of light without that great a speed to begin with, I could dodge them even with my eyes closed.

And like that, receiving power from the masses of muscle that were my tentacles, In just a step, I had reached the space right below the two Angels floating in the sky. Of course, in that space of time, I didn’t stop the tentacles coming at them up there either.

The skies don’t belong to you guys alone. If I felt like it, then like a spider’s web, I could string up my hands.

Nothing can escape from my dinner plate.

“Uge… you sure do some reckless things…”

I barely heard Greed-kun whisper to himself with a stiff expression.

Reckless?

Fufufu… that’s just how a Lord’s battles go.

I think your Lord’s the one who’s all over the place! Even if I try forgetting, I’ll never be able to get that taste out of my mind!

The moment the Angels had their full attention focused on the hands coming at them from up high, I gave the ground a nice kick.

I put the tentacles I used for movement to offensive use. As a large number of Tentacles came at them from below, one of them tried diverting them, the other directed the palm of his hand at me.

Fufu, for them to still be relying on magic Skills at this point…

Of course, this isn’t my place to complain. The ones who hold responsibility for this one are you guys alone

As if to match him, I also held out both my hands.

“Judgement Rain.”

“The Skyeater’s Darkness.”

And light and dark were to clash once more.

The light tried to pierce through the darkness, and the dark to suck up the light. In a sense, it was a mini representation of our eternal struggle.

The energy I felt from that light was, without a doubt, Lord Class.

Therefore, the power I got from dissolving it was also large.

By drinking down the light, the darkness only gained in strength.

While Avaritia may be the best under the heavens at stealing, there’s no one out there to contest a Gula’s skill at eating.

Even so, I doubt I’ll be able to stomach all this energy. No matter what, the power of darkness was always a step behind that of light.

When Lords of the same level were to duke it out, it was inevitable that the Demons would be the ones torn apart. I knew that all too well.

That’s why I tempted them. With tentacles.

“Fufu… it’s not good to look away like that.”

I pierced the Angel’s hand with a tentacle I circled around from the side. At the same time the light emitted at me changed course, and flew into the distance.

For a moment, I could see surprise on the Angel’s face, and before that faded, the Angel was swallowed into my darkness.

An indescribable scream escaped his lips.

An exclamation enough to make me shiver. The power of the Angel passing through the darkness flowed into me. It’s likely that at the moment, he’s going through the pain of having his entire body dissolved.

The Angel passed through, and gripped my face with the palm of his hand.

I couldn’t see his expression. But it was easy to imagine. It must be the expression I’ve always found directed at me.

And that’s why, as always, I offered some words of gratitude.

“Thank you for the meal.”

In a short moment, the Angel’s body fully settled into my stomach. Only the remnants of his magic overflowed onto my lips.

As I thought, it’s quite tasteless. It seems that he did properly raise his power level, but this is way too bland, you know…

Following the law of gravity, I landed on the ground. As long as I have these Gobbling Garments on, I don’t even raise a cloud of dust, but out of habit, I patted down my trousers.

The other Angel wasn’t there anymore. I knew.

The moment the first one tried to shoot of that ‘Judgement Rain’ attack, the second took flight. Perhaps, if the other one had stayed behind, I wouldn’t have been able to pierce that Angel’s hand. And even after having his comrade desert him, the emotions of the Angel firing down his judgement at me didn’t shift in the slightest.

That goes to say that was their plan from the start.

“Fu… they’re way too understanding. How boring…”

If they were floating around, that’d be one thing, but I’ve no means to catch up to an Angel flying a straight line path away

In the first place, that lack of taste doesn’t let me work up a desire to give chase. The instincts for battle, the instincts for strife burned into my body were restrained upon eating that first one.

In the past, it was unthinkable for me to let an ingredient flee from before my eyes, but… well, I wonder if this isn’t too bad either.

I looked around the town that had become a mountain of rubble, and found Greed-kun looking at me from a corner.

As always, that’s quite some courage there. With a former enemy, a former Demon Lord before his eyes, for him not to be harboring any fear, even for a General Class Demon, that isn’t an easy thing to pull off.

Well, even so, in the end, that’s all he is to me…

“Ki ki ki, as always, that’s some absurd power you’ve got…”

“Fufu… even if you call them Lords, they weren’t anything to speak of.”

Just as Demon Lords differed from start to finish, Saint Lords had a wide gap between the top and the bottom.

Even among them, the Lords I just met were… small fries.

Well, even then, there’s no doubt they’re a rare food stock to find in this vast Demon World.

I let out a large sigh, and patted my stomach.

Ah… maybe if my appetite returns…

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