Everyone was shocked speechless, but they couldn’t be blamed for that.
This boy had gone out of his way to use the saint as bait, used a spell so grand it altered the terrain, and he even went as far as to use a forbidden spell, yet it turns out that he did all that just so that he could let out some stress.
No wonder everyone was looking blankly at him in doubt, but the boy didn’t seem to notice that and just cheerfully continued.
“My frustrations have been piling up because I have to pay attention to so many things. I’m always worrying about public attention, yet I have to be meticulous, and I also haven’t had time to rest. Thanks to that, I’m sleep deprived and haven’t even been able to eat properly.”
He sounded just like one of those men that would grumble at the tavern about work.
He even made that thousand-mile look while sighing and looked like he would die from overwork.
“So I was really in a bad mood until just awhile ago and was hoping for someone to beat up to clear my mood,” the boy laughed.
Not a hint of guilt could be seen on him. If anything, he at most he looked like a child being scolded after pulling a prank, and that made Gulde tremble.
To this boy, what he’d done until now was just on ‘that’ level.
“…W-Wait a moment!”
“You were feeling bad until just awhile ago?”
“Anyone was fine, you just wanted to beat someone up?”
“Don’t tell me…”
But the people most affected by his confession were in fact the maids and the otherworlder behind, and their faces all simultaneously twitched.
It was at this point that Gulde finally understood why they were all beaten.
But it was too late for that, and the boy’s expression changed again, so Gulde chose to just keep listening to the boy.
“But you know, it was really hard to find a suitable target. There are a lot of bad people in the world that ought to be eliminated, but the cleanup afterwards would be a mess, so they didn’t make for good stress relief. A monster outbreak wouldn’t so conveniently happen either, and even if one did occur, depending on the place, you’d have to watch your back, and that’s plenty exhausting in its own way. There are people who make a living from hunting too, so I’d feel bad taking away their prey for such a reason. Monster Beasts were out of the question too since over-hunting could cause the ecosystem to collapse and that would cause more work for me. It turns out the world is surprisingly connected in many ways, and it’s actually hard to find someone that you can kill without consequence.”
That’s why his frustrations piled up, but that brought them back to the initial question.
“O, ogugu… I-If so, then why… Why did you pick me!?”
Regardless of the reasons the boy gave, Gulde had still been chosen.
In a sense, the boy was basically saying that he was less than monsters, and that caused dark emotions to swirl within him.
Oddly enough, that actually bought him more time before his soul blew up.
“Why? Because you have no influence whatsoever. No one will be inconvenienced even if you die, so there’s no cleanup afterwards.”
But the boy readily answered his question as though nothing could be more obvious.
He even sounded as though he were mocking him for not having common sense.
And just like that, his death sentence was casually announced. None of that crescent moon smile from earlier could even be seen.
Gulde was horrified. In the boy’s childlike innocence, he was basically sa*istically telling him that… He had no value whatsoever.
An emotion overwhelmed Gulde, but he could not tell what it was.
Scoundrels who have broken the law, monsters whose very existence was harmful, and monster beasts that existed as a part of the ecosystem.
Gulde was the third son to a noble family and someone who has lived for 300 years, so Gulde understood what the boy was getting at.
The loss of such people and creatures would indeed have an effect on the world.
The official judgment of the wicked in public would show that the law was being enforced, contributing to the maintenance of the public order.
The monster beasts had a strong influence on the land and on other species of their own kind.
And there were people that made a living by hunting or studying the monsters.
Had the boy thoughtlessly destroyed any one of those instead, the world would have surely been greatly affected.
But what about Gulde?
It has been three hundred years since he burned down his own country.
He might have made some big moves since then, but he has always made sure to keep a low-profile since the church would surely try to purify him if he caught their attention.
That’s why all of his massacres were carried out in a way that no one would suspect an undead was behind them.
Which meant to say that no one was paying any attention to him, and no one even knew that he existed.
Since then, he has always been alone, peering into the depths of the forbidden and researching as he pleased.
He has used people on occasion, but he never had someone he could call a partner or a peer.
Gulde didn’t need others; therefore, Gulde wasn’t needed by others.
He was neither alive nor dead, so the ecosystem didn’t need him either.
The forbidden arts were sustained by the blood and flesh of people, while he was only sustained by their resentment, so he wasn’t a part of the circle of life.
Whether he kept living or died, he wouldn’t become someone else’s sustenance; hence, his existence was not relevant to others.
This should’ve been the immortality he longed for.
No one to bother him, no one to judge him, no one to connect with him.
A being that was complete on its own; an existence that has transcended life.
But when the boy judged him as such, he suddenly found himself trembling at how insecure and worthless he felt.
Because he had isolated himself, there was no one who would think of him or remember him after he died.
Now that it was certain that he would disappear, the only connection he had would also disappear, and the tragedy of that froze his soul that was about to burst.
“I had an errand at Kulash and happened to see you early on. As soon as I saw you, I knew you were the one, so I leaked some intel and led the saint on to bring you to the forest where the Tenkorius lived. I figured that if it’s there, people would just blame it on the Tenkorius even if I destroyed the forest. It was a great plan, right?” The boy said proudly.
Yet he didn’t care one bit about the fact that Gulde would disappear.
He just naturally ignored that as though it was something that had already been decided.
Because no problems would arise even if he disappeared, because he had no influence, because he was perfect for his stress relief…
It was almost as if…
“That’s why Gulde-kun, you’re really convenient for me. Thank you for spending your three hundreds years in vain. Thanks to you, I feel so much better.”
…He was telling him that he was the most worthless being in this whole world.