１２． Dark Portal
Though I was quite worried during the takeoff, that anxiety was gone after the dragon was flying stably in the air.
The sunlight was dazzling.
We’re around 500 m above the ground―― The kind of height that would definitely kill me if I fell, but it’s just low-altitude flight for the dragon.
We were flying through the wind.
The scenery below was flowing faster.
The wind pressure reduced quite a bit after Platy recited a protection spell.
Thus, I had some leeway to enjoy the scenery.
… Unlike the last time, there was no need for me to cling on to a rope that also acts as our lifeline, and compared to the chilly air from before, I am literally inhaling warm air right now…
Previously, we couldn’t use any other magic since concealment magic was incompatible with any other magic, thus all of us could only resist the weather with willpower…
Currently, I could take a look at the horizon.
「As expected, the scenery from the sky is the best.
It feels like I’m free.」
I could hear Platy’s voice from above my head.
When I looked up, her expression was different from before, she wore a completely relaxed expression.
Maybe she was tired of having to put on that stern appearance when she was in the demon king castle.
Nevertheless, for her to feel the freedom in the sky while snatching the freedom of the dragons… I didn’t miss the moment when the dragon’s head twitched upon hearing Platy’s remark.
I see now, maybe I could use the fact that the dragons were harbouring ill intent toward the demon race and incorporate it into my plan… I might be able to see something really interesting as long as I did something to the incubation place for the dragon’s egg…
「You seem to be really relaxed, Jilbagias.
As if this isn’t your first air travel.」
「… It was just shaking more than I expected.
Otherwise, I enjoyed it.」
Platy’s remark interrupted my train of thought.
Nevertheless, this dragon was truly skilful.
We encountered turbulence when we just took off and yet, they skillfully manipulated the air, they used gliding to reduce the effect of the turbulence.
… I had the experience of riding on the back of a white dragon in my previous life, but it was such a nightmarish experience… I mean, that was a high altitude flight.
You could say that the user’s experience was truly different.
「As expected of my son.
You really enjoy it.」
Platy was brushing my head with a satisfied look on her face.
How rare of her to do this to me.
I wonder what kind of face I will make right now… I was just glad that Platy couldn’t see my face from her position.
I lowered my gaze for a change of pace.
The area below me should be the territory of the beastfolks tribe.
I mean, I could see their peculiar round houses and the figure of beastfolks working on the field.
I saw humans every now and then but even from this distance, I knew that their condition was the worst.
They might be the slaves… since humans were physically weaker than beastfolks, most human slaves were entrusted with detailed jobs.
As for the other race aside from humans and beastfolks, I couldn’t see the figure of the demon who became the lord of the territory below me.
So this is what is going to happen to the conquered territory.
It was just like the beastfolks were living properly.
It was as if they had already integrated into the demon kingdom and had no reason to rebel.
… Never in their wildest dreams would they expect that the demon race’s prince who was currently flying above them had already concocted a plan to destroy his own kingdom.
After busying myself with planning for about thirty minutes, the scenery had gradually changed.
The verdant green land had slowly transformed into wasteland.
There was barely any residence in that place, and finally even the houses were gone.
A stone paved, straight road was built on this wasteland.
When I raised my face to looked at the spectable in front of me――
I saw something like a mirage, yet flickering in rainbow colour.
It was shining like prismatic light.
Upon a closer look, it should be breathtaking scenery and yet, I felt a chill running down my spine for some reason.
The instinct that I trained during my era as an active hero in my previous life was ringing loudly as if telling me to avoid that place.
And then, a miscellaneous looking city was built at the base of that flickering, rainbow-coloured light.
「”Cosmos Lodge”, a city for demon race and devil.」
The dragon gradually lowered their altitude.
「There’s a lodging place for the relatives of the demon who entered Hell, and for the devil who just came from Hell to get used to their materialized body.
In this case, I’ll be waiting for you.」
「Mother won’t come with me」
「I cannot enter anymore.
My vessel has already filled to the brim with devils.」
Platy spoke with a slightly vexed voice.
「Sofia went as far as to tell me that I might have ended up lost in Hell and vanished if I forced myself to enter.
That’s why I can only see you off.」
Well don’t worry about me, I’ll be fine even if I go there myself.」
Platy was brushing my head again.
For some reason, she was acting overly familiar with me today… was what I felt but, come to think of it, this woman was my mother after all.
I guess this sense of distance between mother and son was pretty normal.
She had never done this before, which saved me from a whole lot of trouble.
After the dragon landed on the outskirts of the city, we descended from the dragon’s back and walked toward the centre of the city.
Extremely dense―― No, it’s more like magical power from different natures filled the air of this place.
That’s why even the logic of this world was distorted in this place.
It was even more obvious upon seeing the novel design of the houses that lined up along the street of this town.
There was a giant, detached house built on a tiny branch of a small tree.
There was a store in the form of an inverted triangle that was seemingly about to collapse at any moment, yet stood still in its place.
And lastly the citizens.
There were other demons and many more devils.
There was a crowd of imps.
A brawny mid-rank devil who was quarrelling with other devils.
There was a high-rank devil who lay down on the roof of a building while munching on something like transparent cotton candy with several arms.
「That’s the Dark Portal」
After walking for a while, we finally reached the centre of the city, the location of THAT
The origin of the flickering, rainbow-coloured light.
Just by staring at it, it felt like my soul was sucked into the darkness that akin to the night of the new moon.
It was pitch-black darkness.
The hole of the world.