< Evade the Hero and Flee! 211 #24. Why Does it Have To Be Me? (8) >

 

I started off as a substitute to fill the void left by an instructor who had passed away. After discovering how much of a dream job it was, though, I freaked out like a moron and put in extra hard work to eventually make the position mine.
However, there was a ‘first time’ for everyone.
“Now, look closely.”
I was a newbie instructor and still not very adept at teaching others.
“See? Look! Look!”
My sword drew flashy arcs in the air. The training scarecrow was cleanly sliced apart. Feeling satisfied by the result, I loudly declared to the spectating trainees. “This is swordsmanship!”
“Whoa~…”
“Wow…”
Clap, clap, clap!
The number of trainees applauding and cheering on was… only two. I thought weaklings were unnecessary, so I went a bit overboard with kicking them out. But when I regained my wits, only two trainees were left. Even worse…
“Wow. So. Freaking. Brilliant. Instructor.”
“Yes, sir.”
One of the two had such a poor attitude that he deliberately accentuated every word he spoke. However, his skills were pretty good, so I hadn’t punished him for his conduct yet.
“Now, it’s your turn,” said I.
“Sorry?”
“What the hell…?”
“Why did you two become my disciples? Wasn’t it to become exemplary members of our organisation? Learning swordsmanship is a given if you wish to work for this organisation.”
The two trainees clamped their mouths shut and glanced at each other.
“And how do we learn that?”
The one who said that was the trainee with a poor attitude. He raised the white flag first during their fierce staring contest.
“Mm… That’s obviously…” I used the sword in my hand to draw a straight line in the air. My master, often referred to as the world’s greatest swordsman, had complimented my swordsmanship as at least perfect in terms of framework. And now, it was about to be unleashed once more. “Watch and learn.”
“Watch you and learn? That?”
“Sounds impossible to me, though…?”
The two trainees frowned and stared at my demonstration.
Huh? These are just some basic moves, you know…? It’s not that difficult to pull off… Wait, could it be…
“…Are you two morons?”
“Wow, how did you arrive at that conclusion, instructor?”
“No, sir. I’m not a moron.”
Mm… These two had polar-opposite personalities, yet they were largely of the same opinion when dealing with me. How bizarre. Could this be the oft-talked-about power of comradeship or something? I mean, even if you disliked your comrade, they would eventually become your supporting pillar sooner or later, right?
“So, what you’re saying is, you can’t follow this?”
Well, comrades relying on each other for support is a good thing. The thing was, though…! Not only my performance-related bonus pay but even my career was also hanging in the balance here! As such, I cannot afford to go easy on these two trainees, even if they unite to fight together!
“Sir, it’s too complicated.”
“Yes, sir. He’s right.”
“This is complicated to you?”
Whoosh, whoosh…
I was simply slashing down and sideways with my sword. Sometimes I’d combine that and cut diagonally or draw a smooth circle. Basically, it was like drawing with a pen, except I was using a sword instead.
“Maybe you two are morons, after all?”
To think that they couldn’t even do something this simple… I thought only the useful trainees were left behind, but even these two turned out to be failures! Unfortunately, the ship had sailed already.
If I chase away these two because they were not up to my standards, I’d end up as a useless instructor that couldn’t even raise a single disciple. Ah, ah… Was there really no easy job in this world? To think that I have to raise such morons to get my bonus pay from the organisation!
“There’s no choice, then.” I groaned deeply, then immediately resorted to a special measure my master from my previous life had devised.
According to my master, you’d find far too many morons among the naturally-gifted ones that couldn’t even understand the simplest of instructions. He said that all those morons could have exceeded him in terms of physique and every other conceivable category, but their dim wits let them down, and they couldn’t even understand half of his swordsmanship.
I glared sharply at the two trainees. “Raise your swords.”
To train those morons, my master came up with this method.
“If you can’t understand it… Then, I shall make your bodies understand it first.”
And that was the ‘repetitive learning’… that included muscle memory training with a dash of pain on the side!
“Uh?! H-hold on…?!”
The trainee who figured out my intention first stumbled back as his complexion went deathly pale. Unfortunately, it was too late by then.
“As a special consideration, I shall use an edgeless sword.”
Sheath…
I sheathed my sword and took out a new one. It was made out of steel, but its blade was blunt. A certain triple-katana wielder’s master said that a swordsman that doesn’t cut could cut down anything in their path, but I hadn’t reached such a realm. If I showed off with a real sword, I might end up decreasing the number of my already-running-short disciples. So, I chose to deal with these two with a blunt weapon.
“Now, come!”
When I pulled out the blunt sword and assumed the stance, the two disciples stared at me in silence before glancing at each other. Were they thinking of attacking me together?
Well, I guess that’s obvious since our skill levels weren’t the same. In that case, how much ‘easier’ should I go on them? I better control my strength properly, or else these two frail disciples might die. After all, my master nearly sent me to heaven with Hiten Mixxxrugi-ryu’s Ryuxxxsen back then, didn’t he! Even though he was using the back of the sword! [1]
“I’ll go right.”
“Then, I’m left.”
The two exchanged meaningful glances, then declared the directions they’d take and nodded in agreement.
Still noobs, I guess. Since they said their plans out loud, now I knew how to respond. I knew it, a combined attack should only be performed after the trainees had received sufficient training first.
Just brief exchanges of glances and slight movements of muscles should be enough to figure out where your comrade was targeting and where they were thinking of moving. You also needed to know about your comrade’s techniques and habits to pull off a successful combined attack!
“I shall teach you a proper way to attack together later, so for now, you… Eh?”
However, it seemed that these trainees were one step ahead of me.
“Run!”
“Run, now!”
“Huh?!”
The two trainees cried out at the same time and started running, but they… Just as they had advertised, one began running to his right while the other ran to his left. That’s right, these two abandoned me and began running away! Even though I was in position waiting for them to come at me!
“Escaping first as the operatives of the evil organisation…?”
Of course, knowing how to escape was a good thing. Obstinately refusing to run away even though the situation was clearly going down the drain was akin to committing suicide. Since ancient times, wasn’t using your hidden sure-kill attack immediately when you can (and running away immediately when things don’t look good) one of the important truths in life?
However, there were some problems with this right now.
“You stinking bastards…”
First of all, this was the evil organisation we’re talking about. And those two were trainees of this organisation. The evil organisation desired operatives that stayed loyal no matter what. Operatives who would unhesitantly kill themselves when ordered! That’s what the organisation wanted, not those idiots that ran away at the first sign of trouble!
“When I catch you, I’ll thoroughly wreck you.” I gritted my teeth and decided to chase after the disciple with a poor attitude first. It didn’t matter how far they ran, they’d still be stuck inside the organisation’s borders. As for the other trainee, I should take my time beating his ass up while making sure to unleash all my pent-up resentment.
The next day…
The two idiots, now resembling half-dead sacks of meat, were revived with expensive healing potions. While doing so, I came to realise something important.
Most instructors trained, on average, one hundred trainees. But I only had two! What could this even mean? Of course, it meant the budget for training a hundred trainees could now be dumped on two!
And so, despite being a novice instructor, I managed to exploit the power of P2W that didn’t involve my own money and raised these disciples as two of the finest operatives.
Although they were a little on the older side, they still graduated from being trainees in only one year. Which meant I had created two excellent operatives of the evil organisation!
As a result, I was left with too much time to kill and got assigned to the worst-possible job posting called the imperial court. I encountered so many close brushes with death in that place! Meanwhile, my two idiotic disciples got fooled by something or someone somehow and left the organisation to become heroes instead.
The disciple with a poor attitude went missing, and I hadn’t heard a single peep about him since then. As for the other one… The last I heard about him was that he had become the greatest hero in the world and the worst enemy of all the evil organisations out there. So…
“…Why are you here?”
Seriously now, why are you here?!

 

#7 Their circumstance: Mirua’s circumstance

 

“Why are you here?”
A man appeared before us without any of us noticing his presence. Weirdly, though, my instructor seemed to know who this man was. Of course, even I knew who he was. He was the demon king.
Sure, the instructor is a demon king, and I was also called that for a brief moment or two, but this man before my eyes was a totally different demon king than us. Why? He’s the Evil God’s apostle meant to destroy this world, that’s why!
“Allow me to repeat myself. I was also rather surprised, instructor.”
The demon king, he… No, hang on. Since almost everyone here has the title of the demon king, I guess calling the intruder the Evil God’s apostle will be easier to differentiate us from him.
In any case! The Evil God’s apostle stared at the instructor and shook his head while making a stiff face. “Whedon and I often joked about how you are a devil, but… I never imagined that you’d actually become a demon king in the demon continent, instructor.”
Right, right! Me too! When I first heard that the instructor had crossed over to the demon continent, I thought that move was just like him. But, even I never imagined that he’d become a demon king.
“And on top of that… Who would’ve imagined that you possessed a fragment of Evil on you?”
“Say what?” The instructor made a flabbergasted expression. “What is that?”
The Evil God’s apostle cocked his eyebrow in suspicion. “Don’t you know already?”
“No, I do not.”
The instructor and the apostle stared into each other’s eyes.
“…I see. You are not lying, then.” The apostle was the first to break off the staring contest.
As expected of my instructor! He didn’t cower despite his opponent being the Evil God’s apostle!
The instructor asked another question. “Just what is this fragment thing that the Evil God’s apostle deigned to seek me out?”
“The Evil was sealed away by the gods once. However, the Goddess of Greed and Lust tried to release the seal, only for the Goddess of Benevolence and Devotion to sacrifice everything of hers to stop it. She wasn’t completely successful, however.”
I got the feeling that a very important backstory was about to be explained to us. Backstories were important. My instructor used to warn us that those with too many things to say usually don’t live long, you see!
Our opponent was the Evil God’s apostle, a dangerous existence threatening the world’s survival. Such a being was yapping away all by itself? There could not be a better chance than this to prepare for our attack. Even the instructor was silently signalling with his eyes, telling us to quickly prepare for a sneak attack on the back of this intruder’s head!
“The Goddess of Benevolence and Devotion even had to give up on her divinity to seal the power of Evil, but her sacrifice wasn’t enough. As such, the remaining gods used their divine powers to separate the much-weakened power of Evil into seven pieces.”
“This ain’t even Draxxn Ball, so what the…” The instructor grumbled loudly. His acting was so natural that even I was almost fooled. However, I still noticed it – the sneaky movements of the metal bat, obviously! [2]
“Those seven pieces, the fragments, were scattered all over the world. And I came to possess the Evil of Men, the strongest of the crystallised fragments, to become the Evil God’s apostle, the one you talked about previously.”
This man kindly explaining everything must have been my instructor’s first disciple. I mean, my instructor’s disciple was explaining things this nicely for everyone’s benefit?
Usually, disciples trained by our instructor would yap on nonstop like that if they find themselves in a disadvantageous position and want to buy some time. Or, to scam people! However, they would be spewing rubbish about how their actions were meant to save the world and stuff like that instead of droning on about the plot.
“What’s that got to do with me?” The instructor asked suspiciously.
“I’ve managed to gather all the fragments bar one. And instructor, you’re the possessor of that last fragment.”
“How come?”
“I also do not know that.”
I sneakily pulled out my hidden dagger and chanted a magic spell in my head. Even though I was busy preparing, I could understand the flow of the conversation somewhat. The fragment of Evil was… with my instructor?
I guess the instructor still hasn’t figured it out yet, but I knew what it was. It was none other than that metal bat! If it’s that demonic weapon, then I can wholeheartedly agree that the fragment of Evil definitely resided in that thing!
Yup, it had to be. The metal bat was the fragment of Evil, for sure!
“Hmm. I don’t need something like that…” The instructor rubbed his chin.
“In that case, can you hand it over to me?”
“As I’m a peace lover, I certainly can. As long as you swear to leave peacefully, that is.”
“You’ll have to die to hand over the fragment, however.”
The Evil God’s apostle replied calmly, prompting the instructor to groan loudly. “That’s unacceptable.”
“In that case, it can’t be helped, then.”
The two men glared at each other before muttering simultaneously.
“My apologies, instructor.”
“Get lost.”
At the instructor’s signal, I threw my dagger. Of course, the throw was done with magical power, while the weapon itself was imbued with a special magic spell. This dagger was a special magic tool designed for the sole purpose of throwing at a target. It absorbed magic power quite well, and thanks to the spell, it would explode as soon touching the target, too.
“How amateurish.”
However, the apostle oh-so easily flicked the dagger away with a simple wave of his hand. And the report about magical powers not working on him seemed to be true as the dagger didn’t explode, either.
“Be gone, you seed of abominable Evil God!”
The thing was, though, I wasn’t the only one in this chamber. Several demon kings, including Belegrea, were also present. The deflection of the dagger bought enough time for them to charge in at the apostle with their weapons drawn.
“You’re all too weak.”
Unfortunately, the Evil God’s apostle was strong. He pulled out a greatsword and swung it at a blindingly-fast speed to fling away five demon kings. Some of them seemed to be gravely injured, too.
“An opening!”
However, that was a large, flashy attack. And the apostle was minding the other demon kings on top of that. Which meant… I spotted a small opening! Although it wasn’t enough to inflict a fatal wound, our enemy was a human, so making him bleed should help us in the long run.
While thinking that, I cut open a small wound in the enemy’s waist. But then…!
Shudder.
“Huh?”
I instinctively used all my strength to back away from there in a hurry. Even though I’ve definitely cut his flesh, something jet-black oozed out of the wound instead of blood. The quantity of the black ooze wasn’t a lot, but even I could tell I shouldn’t go anywhere near that unknown thing.
“Not bad,” said the apostle as our eyes met.
Our opponent was the instructor’s disciple. That look on his face probably indicated that he’d not forget this and let me taste the full punishment later.
That sure sounded like an attitude befitting the instructor’s disciple, but…!
“Didn’t our instructor teach you this?”
“Our instructor? I see, you are my junior, then.” The Evil God’s apostle looked at me as if I amused him.
To think that he’d not understand me, though! It seemed that this senior disciple hadn’t learned properly from our instructor.
“He must’ve told you to focus during battles, though!”
Our instructor was already standing right before the Evil God’s apostle. He powerfully struck down with his metal bat. And so, the apostle should be falling down while screaming his head off… Huh?
“Instructor, that hurts a lot, but for you to use a stick rather than a sword… That reminds me of some unpleasant memories.”
W-what?
“How?!” The clearly-stunned instructor struck down with the metal bat once more.
The Evil God’s apostle tried to dodge but couldn’t escape from the instructor’s stunning display of swordsmanship using the metal bat.
The apostle frowned deeply after getting hit several times with the metal bat. “Is this because you can’t bring yourself to kill me, your former disciple? Or do you still see me as one of your trainees?”
Huh? Huuuuh? Why isn’t he in pain at all?!
“Doesn’t it hurt?” The instructor must be flustered as well judging from his question.
Was this the true power of my senior? For some reason, he kinda looked amazing for a second, but…
“Let’s stop messing around now, shall we?”
The senior began unleashing that black something in full to remind me that he was the Evil God’s apostle, a being that should not be allowed to exist in this world.

[1]: “Hiten Mixxxrugi-ryu” and “Ryuxxxsen” refer to the sword technique of Himura Kenshin, the protagonist of the Rurouni Kenshin series. The uncensored versions are “Hiten Mitsurugi-ryu” and “Ryushosen.”
[2]: Yes, that’s a reference to Dragon Ball.

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