The forgotten fifth
Everyone, at least once, dreamed of becoming the hero who would defeat the Demon Lord.
But, in reality, it’s as hard as winning the lottery.
I wanted to face them before anyone else and come back safe and sound. They were in a dangerous place, but even dying on the way back could make me a hero.
When a hero returns from a similar feat, it goes without saying that he’s stronger than what was defeated. Hence, it’s normal that monsters are too scared to attack.
But even being acknowledged as someone of that caliber is frustrating.
Despite all the glory and fame, you end up losing your freedom.
What to do, then? Before the end, I kept worrying about it.
I might be a coward, but I joined the campaign to eliminate the Demon Lord and decided to make a great comeback.
I didn’t need glory. I didn’t care about being the center of attention. I just wanted to get my hands on what I desired.
I also didn’t want to get hurt.
That’s the reason I chose to support from the rear. I mean, I’d have preferred working as a tutor.
I wanted to avoid being one of the heroes at all costs. Supporting and watching them from afar was enough. I kept believing that until we succeeded in our feat.
Long story short, in order to defeat the Demon Lord, SSS-ranked adventurers were needed.
In the world of Grangalm, where the Kingdom of Albein prospers, the guild measures precisely the strength of its members. Physical strength, magic power, known techniques and personal connections: if the “strength of the adventurer” goes above 100.000 points, they’re considered SSS rank.
From the foundation of the reign, only a few managed to obtain this rank.
But our generation was an exception. A request titled “Please! Stop the Demon Lord!” was sent to kids of about ten years old. They were called “Miracle children.”
God granted them tremendous abilities that, after being honed, brought their score above 100.000 points.
Two names were granted for those five:
“Cody – Holy sword of light”
“Mylarka – Sweet disaster”
“Yuma – Voiceless requiem”
“Aileen – Charming goddess of wrath”
And finally, me… Although my score too exceeded 100.000 points, I was fairly invisible, thus, I was called “Guy – Forgotten.” I thought they could have searched for my first name at least, since they wanted to grant me another one. My name is Dick Silver.
They were novices with outstanding scores, but their weak point was obvious.
Their naivety. Everyone relied too much on their abilities, so they didn’t need to think about strategies and the like.
Cody was a boy who was honest to a fault and couldn’t fight without introducing himself. The other three girls possessed enough strength to break the spine of a normal man, but their terrible personalities were a hindrance to the party.
Still, after I joined in, I managed to unify them.
I understood their powers and made good use of them. I wasn’t capable enough to be in the vanguard… but it went without saying. I wasn’t good like Cody and Aileen in close combat, and it was useless to compare myself to Yuma and Mylarka’s magic bombardments. For this reason, that role was perfect for me. My abilities were the most balanced among the Miracle children.
Under my guidance, we easily made it to the Demon Lord’s base.
Mylarka assaulted the Demon Lord relentlessly with her Annihilation Magic, Aileen threw herself on them like a spear and overpowered the foe, and Cody dealt the final blow with his light sword while Yuma purified the wraiths it called and delivered them to Heaven.
I suggested them the tactics and used defensive magic from time to time, but besides that I was only a spectator. I couldn’t do anything to help those guys in battle, hence I supported them as best as I could. Yuma, even though she was a High Priest, never learned Healing or Defensive magic. The Demon Lord was so powerful that losing a limb from a single hit wouldn’t be strange. For this reason, maybe thanks to my magic, someone was able to escape death. Or rather, let’s say I was hoping for this.
I stood as a support, trying to remain unnoticed until the end. I would have gained some merits even as the most useless member of the party, but I didn’t want people to know that I helped. “I was just a support”, I would have said, and as true as it was, there wouldn’t have been many who would think highly of me.
In the end, we managed to defeat the Demon Lord, a gorgeous dark elf.
“It seems that I’ve lost. I shall acknowledge your power, humans.”
“Really? Then if you promise you’ll be a good girl, we’ll stop for now. Stop intimidating people and never leave your land again. Otherwise, you won’t get away with this again.”
“Do you want to leave this territory unscathed…? How naive, human. Do you think there’s no need to destroy the demons’ land?”
“Everyone needs a place to live. I feel this way.”
Cody was covered in blood after that battle, but he stated that clearly. I thought someone should do something about his injuries, but I was the only one who could. I hoped for a healer to join us along the way… but it didn’t happen, thus now it fell on me. I prepared Healing Light and cast it on him nonchalantly.
“Umpf… Humans, I give up for now. But remember that whenever light shines, shadows will grow. Demons will come back again and sink your world into darkness…”
“Who cares. We must retrieve some evidence for our success, or we can kiss goodbye to our reward.”
“Sweet disaster” was a proper title: Mylarka was cute even when intimidating the Demon Lord. She had straight, blond hair and firm eyes. She was eleven years old, two less than me, but she wasn’t concerned about it… she showed confidence in both her looks and abilities. Our age difference didn’t matter.
She looked strict and equally fierce. She approached the gorgeous dark-skinned woman, who let out a squeak when she started to tear apart her clothes in search of an evidence of our victory.
“I wondered what your soul was like, but when I saw it on the other side… it was disappointing.”
“H-Hey… Don’t be mean. A priestess shouldn’t speak like that.”
“Eh? Why? I want to comfort every soul in this world. Even Dick’s one…”
Yuma looked like a crazy and psycho priestess, but she just had a fetish for souls. This little prodigy was only nine years old, making her the youngest of our party, but I’m still worried about how her condition may worsen in the future. “Priests are like this”, she’s always said, but I doubted it.
“What should we do, then? We need some evidence, so… what about the pendant she wears around her neck?”
Asked Aileen, the little red-haired martial arts master. She was a half, born from the union of a human and a spirit. Despite being only twelve years old, her body, which grew faster than a human’s, was well developed. Her chest, nicknamed “Boing Boing,” was about as big as the Demon Lord’s. Her looks were exceptional for someone of that age, and I often fantasized about her… but let’s not digress.
Cody watched the neck of their foe and saw the pendant. After that, he blushed and his behavior changed strangely:
“D-Dick… you take that.”
“What’s up with you…? Mh?”
The Demon Lord’s ragged clothes concealed very little of her upper body. Our treasure was hidden in the middle of her bountiful chest.
Cody couldn’t help it… well, as far as it’s normal for a thirteen years old boy, he looked a little exaggerated. On the other hand, holding the burning feelings in my heart, I took the pendant from her chest.
“Nh…! D-Do you want to take my talisman…?! You better not. I’d lose my resistances, as well as my regeneration… but if any human wears it, they would be cursed and their life energy drained…!”
“Uhm… not bad…”
When she finished to explain, I started to pull slowly… and the thread snapped.
It looked like a simple magical object, but the astonishing power which overflowed from it wasn’t.
“Looking at the Demon Lord with that lustful face is disgusting… pervert. You’re a pervert, Dick.”
“Hahaha, Mylarka is envious! Don’t worry, yours will get bigger as you grow. ♪”
“I-I wasn’t thinking about that…”
Mylarka stared at me for a while before looking away. Even when she was silent and cute, she had a strong and resolute personality… but I was already used to it.
The talisman was more important. The warmth of that tempting chest when I took it… I mean, it was still warm, but I ignored that.
“This comes with us, since I can’t be cursed if I don’t wear it.”
“Tch… F-Fine. If I behave, will you give it back?”
“I can’t promise it, but let’s see… Come to take it back five years from now. If you do that, it will be yours again.”
“…I hate children to death, but you’ve got guts. Young hero, what’s your name?”
“Didn’t you hear it before? I’m Dick. Dick Silver. Feel free to forget it, but I’d like you to remember. Otherwise, forget about the talisman too.”
I took the treasure… even though it would have cursed a normal person, with my actual power I would hold it off. I wondered if wearing it would have turned me into the Demon Lord, but that wasn’t my goal.
…Right, I was forgetting something.
“At any rate, I’m not a hero. Cody is. I just followed them.”
“W-Why… are you this modest? It’s obvious that without you, they couldn’t…”
Without letting her finish, I left the castle. The demons who survived didn’t dare to attack us when we were in sight either.