On that day, an army was discovered heading towards Jaeburg from far away on a mountain road.
This was something that had already been anticipated, so it was immediately reported and relayed all the way to Manesh.
Their numbers: tens of thousands.
As they were arriving through a mountain pass, their numbers were much smaller than the force that had assaulted Magic City. However, it was more than a sufficient force to overwhelm Jaeburg.
Moreover, there was a huge robot painted in crimson within the force.
“They’re here, eh…”
As the person taking command of Jaeburg’s army, Vargas kept his worries to himself.
He’d been told by Ria to not launch the first strike. Even if he ignored her, he wouldn’t be of the mind to do so anyways.
However, when the demon army made camp, they did so surrounding Jaeburg.
The next day, Ria and Carla flew over from Manesh. They literally came flying.
Then, having waited until nightfall, the demon army sent an envoy forward.
Among the envoy was a girl with flaxen-hair, the vampire, Asuka.
“My bad, making you wait till a time like this.”
That was the first thing she said. Like all vampires, even a strong vampire like Asuka was unable to move sufficiently in daylight.
They were in a tent built midway between the demon army’s encampment and Jaeburg’s city gate.
From Ogress’ side, there was Ria, Carla, and several bureaucrats. From the demons’ side, there was just Asuka and a few people that appeared to be military officers.
“Before we talk, I’d like to ask about something from three years ago. That werewolf incident, what were his intentions back then?”
Ria’s voice was laced with anger. After seeing her most important person being destroyed, there’s no way she couldn’t be angry about it.
“That… was unfortunate. Even we weren’t keeping a watch on that… His Majesty was waiting for the last moment, just in case.”
The person who stopped Ria’s katana definitely was the Demon King. With the timing he used there, he likely could have saved Carla as well.
However, Ria wouldn’t consent to that.
“To be honest, I am at a loss at whether we should put our faith in a Demon King who keeps a thing like that.”
“I also think that that thing should have died sooner… Well, his loyalty towards His Majesty was certain, though. Also, even someone like that had a family…”
So he had a family?
Even despite being like that, he had a family.
Ria, now a parent, began to pity the family he left behind just a little.
“He had thirteen wives and twenty-five children, I think?”
Correction. She didn’t pity him at all.
“The heck? He was just a lustful man.”
Ria said that, yet she already had three wives and four children.
Behind her, Carla’s expression still hadn’t changed.
“So, what are your demands?”
The related party, Carla, continued the discussion. That was already in the past. For her, it was done and over.
Hearing her words, Asuka’s expression relaxed.
“We do not wish to war with humanity.”
That was the truth. The lie detection magic that Carla used in secret didn’t go off. There was the possibility that she had tricked it, though.
“We want the land in the vicinity of this mountain. We plan on cultivating the area, turning it into a city.”
That wasn’t a lie either. Then again, if this vampire girl lied to them, it would quickly be appear on her face.
“Also, we’d like you to recognize our ability to live together with humans.”
Ria’s head was filled with thoughts on the matter. Living together with demons. In these past few years, Ria had thought about it the whole time.
It would cause the matter with Carla to be set aside, but once she calmed down, even if she fought against them right now, it would very likely lead to a massive amount of losses.
Besides, there was one thing she worried about over all else.
“Right now… where is the Demon King?”
That was the most important piece of intel there was.
If he was watching this meeting nearby and saw Ria and Carla alone crush the demon army, he would likely swoop in to attack. As the two would be exhausted, it would be unlikely that they could win against him.
If it would turn out like that, ignoring what Ria wanted or didn’t want, there’d be no choice but to accept the demon army’s points.
“That is… something that even I don’t know.”
Her voice turned into a whisper. However.
“However, he is doing something that is absolutely necessary. That is just how His Majesty is.”
Her words had placed absolute trust in him.
Ria didn’t have many choices.
To be exact, it was just whether or not they would fight.
If it came to a fight, it would be simple. If Ria and Carla joined up with Jaeburg’s war potential, even with this vampire that had become their acquaintance fighting against them, there’s no way they would lose. Even so, there would certainly be sacrifices in doing so.
Ria did not want to allow there to be those sacrifices.
“I will approve of you making a city. However, there will some conditions that benefit us.”
Asuka urged her on in silence.
“First off, we will not allow the construction of a rampart. This is in order to prevent it from being used as a military base if it comes down to it. Something at the level of a fence is fine.”
“We’ll concede land, but it will be a place a little ways away from Jaeburg. This is to allow for our side to put our defenses in order in case something happens.”
“That’s alright too.”
Unlike Ria and Asuka, the subordinates behind them were getting nervous.
“That this one might become the biggest problem…”
Ria stared at Asuka. It was a stare as though to say she wouldn’t forgive any lying.
“Until we reach the point that it is deemed safe, I would like to take a few hostages.”
Asuka sighed, nodding.
“Understood. I’ll go along with some others that you pick.”
“No, not you. You’re too strong.”
That part took Asuka by surprise.
“For hostages… would the guys standing behind you be alright?”
“Eh? No, that would be troubling. Without them, our forces would stop functioning.”
There were orcs and goblins amongst them, but they were probably staff officers.
“Then I guess just you is fine? You’re weak in the daytime at least.”
Like that, in Year 3003 on the Continental Calendar, a non-aggression arrangement under the name of the Jaeburg Treaty was signed between Ogress and the demons.
Although this treaty was only meant to last for a single year’s time at first, this would be decided to be extended through both parties’ mutual consent.
Having many strong races, the demons immediately built a settlement one day’s walk away from Jaeburg.
Along with that, the demon army that had been surrounding Jaeburg moved to cultivate land that had been conferred to them by Ria.
Ria herself watched over it.
Before long, it was arranged that caravans would go from Jaeburg to the demon settlement.
Initially, Ria or Carla would travel together with them. This was in order to act as a deterrent in case anything happened.
However, truly, nothing happened at all.
The demons silently cultivated the land. Using methods that humans didn’t know about, they were able to produce crops in an area that was thought to be barren.
Living in Jaeburg, even Asuka was docile. She would sometimes be lead around by those watching over her to look around the human town.
However, this was only ever done during the daytime so that she couldn’t use her powers as a vampire.
In this way, the days passed by calmly.
A piece of information arrived from Manesh.
Serge had returned home.
When she first heard about this, Ria was happy.
However, once she heard that Serge wanted Ria, Carla, and Guinevere to meet him as soon as possible to talk about something, her expression turned into a doubtful one.
She had been regularly receiving letters from Serge.
And yet this was an urgent request.
She had a bad feeling about this.
“Asuka, can I bring you somewhere?”
“I don’t mind, but is it alright with you all?”
“It would be too dangerous to leave you here.”
Currently, the robot that would only work with Asuka was sitting in a tent that had been set up inside Jaeburg.
If she used that to battle, it alone would be able to annihilate Jaeburg.
She trusted Asuka, but it was the responsibility of a ruler to consider any possibilities.
Ria, Carla, and Asuka flew through the sky towards Manesh.
When they arrived at the royal castle’s courtyard, Ria saw a nostalgic face.
However, the only thing nostalgic was his face.
Serge had completely outstripped Ria in height.
“You grew pretty tall.”
He looked to be above 170 cm. Even though Ria was tall for a woman, she wasn’t that tall.
“I have a a lot to talk about, but first… why is Asuka-san with you?”
The sun had already gone down, there wasn’t even any afterglow from it. Otherwise, Asuka wouldn’t be able to fly.
“If me being here is bad, would you let me look around?”
“No… rather, I’d like to hear about how much you demons know about this as well.”
Guinevere joining up with them, the five gathered in the castle’s parlor.
Seeing him stay silent as though being careful to not say anything, the others thought something was strange.
“Where should I start…”
Serge seemed to be hesitant. His expression no longer held any vestiges of his former childish youth. It had matured.
“Start with the conclusion. We can go from there.”
Ria urged him. Serge was happy that her frankness hadn’t changed.
“I’ll say it, then.”
Even so, he gulped before continuing.
“If we continue on how we are right now… humanity—no, the world will be destroyed.”
It was the truth about the Great Collapse.