Hataraku Maou-sama! High School N Chapter 1
A man and a woman faced each other atop tatami mats that were roasting in the sun.
Though the light of dawn shone in, the room was still gloomy; the man had an easy smile on his face and the woman looked back at him with a weary expression.
"What are you saying?"
"Do you mean you didn't hear me? Or do you not understand the goal of my statement?"
"Obviously the latter, are you an idiot?"
The man seemed to be mocking her, but the woman replied in an even more bluntly mocking voice.
"I really am doubting my sanity, eyes and ears. I doubt your sanity just as much too."
"What about doubting your nose while you’re at it? I was in the middle of eating breakfast."
The man dropped his gaze from the woman for the first time, following the scent hanging faintly in the air.
Before him was a meal that even for breakfast, would have to be called insufficient.
On the tatami mats, placed on the cheap and shabby looking kotatsu was just a plate with something gelatinous and yellow along with two pairs of chopsticks.
"Intruding upon an elegant breakfast, and eventually doubting the head of the house's sanity, what a rude person you are."
"What's elegant about this breakfast?"
The woman grimaced and seemed to spit her words.
"Are you an idiot, a Demon King having just scrambled eggs for breakfast? At least buy a loaf of bread!"
"I'm poor, is that a problem?"
"It is! So what!?"
Here, tears welled in the woman's eyes, and went red as she yelled.
"I crossed worlds to kill a brat like this? This is the worst!"
While the woman's tearful voice oozed hostility towards the man, it also sounded imploring.
"Just what do you intend to do? Do you understand what you're saying yourself!? Is your Japanese off!?"
"Ah, so you really didn't listen, did you?"
The man scratched his cheek at the bother and leisurely stood up, taking an imposing stance on the tatami mats as he proclaimed.
"Prick up your ears once again, and listen carefully, Hero Emilia!!"
The man… no, his features still held an innocence, so the boy proclaimed arrogantly and firmly at 'Hero Emilia' who looked to be the same generation, or slightly older.
"In this world! I shall become the Student Council President!!"
The woman called Hero Emilia was dumbfounded at the boy's voice as it made the air in the room shake. Her mouth dropped open, and finally, she dropped her head in despair.
"Even if you tell me that…"
While whispering feebly, the woman raised her head and glared at the boy.
"Demon King Satan… why are you a student at Sasazuka High School…?"
However, compared to her glare, her words weren't particularly strong.
A third person's voice suddenly joined the conversation.
From outside the six roasting tatami mats.
A man stood in the wooden floored kitchen, out of sight from the boy and woman.
"My lord, if you do not hasten to eat your meal, you will be late for school."
"Oh, that's right. Sorry, Ashiya, I'll eat it now."
"Hey, Alsiel, be quiet! I still have things I want to ask!"
"That doesn't matter to me. At least wait until I get back from school!"
"I'm working then!"
"Do you think I care about your circumstances!? Let me warn you, if you show up at school, I'll just report you to the teachers. Schools these days are sensitive about suspicious people, so don't think they'll let you off just because you're a woman!"
"Aren't you ashamed to be a Demon King relying on the police!? Are you going to go crying to human teachers saying 'the hero came to attack me'!? What an unbelievable Demon King!"
"If it's something I can use, I'll use it! Even the police system that humans made! You were looked after by the police last night with me, so they'll come flying in at a tip off!"
"Don't talk about yesterday! That was my biggest failure! I should have just let you die!"
"Ahhh, you can't say you'd kill a student, even if you say it's a joke! I'm gonna tell the teeeaacheers!"
"Y… you demon!"
"Hey, hey, getting serious against an innocent schoolboy isn't very adult!"
"An innocent schoolboy!? Where!? Who!?"
The tall man, who the woman called Alsiel and the boy called Ashiya's sharp voice interjected into their spat that was worse than a child's argument as it began.
"Please hasten to eat. You won't finish."
The boy finally took his chopsticks at this appeal.
"And you, don't yell such disturbing things so early in the morning, it will bother the neighbours."
The youth called Ashiya turned an equal hostility to the woman.
"Emilia, if you're a hero then know when to challenge battle. We are currently powerless humans as we appear. If you still wish to fight, then of course we still have the resolve to accept. However, how do you intend to escape this country afterwards?"
"…With my power I could leave no trace of you…"
"Then go for it."
The boy called the Demon King lightly waved Emilia's disturbing words aside.
"Well, if you could, you'd have done it yesterday."
Emilia cast her eyes down in shame at being found out.
"At any rate, I'm going now. I, studious as I am, have a classical literature quiz first period, so I'm going to school early to prepare."
Facing Emilia, the boy that had taken such an arrogant attitude until now put his hands together.
"See? I'm poor so I've got nowhere to go but here and school, I'm not going to run away."
Emilia had a serious headache coming on, and swayed to her feet as she held her head.
The boy and the youth grew tense for an instant, but she staggered to the entrance and turned her back on them.
"I'm sorta tired… I'll take my leave for now… Haa."
Emilia wiped at her reddened eyes and glared at the boy.
"But don't misunderstand. I'm not sympathetic or overlooking you. If I used the power I had left, I could kill you whenever, but if I did that, I couldn't return to 'the other side'. I plan to return, so I won't kill you. That's all."
"Why are you telling me that?"
"It's not fair for just me to know your circumstances."
"My my, what magnanimity."
"Until I can both return to Ente Isla and subjugate you, I won't take your life. But don't let your guard down… Haa."
With a tired expression, Emilia faced the entrance.
"Oh, and in Japan, my name is Yusa Emi, don't get it wrong."
"Sure thing, roger that."
The moment she was about to leave.
"Also, 'Maou' aside, what's with 'Sadao'? That's not a student's name nowadays."
Having said that, she shut the door with all her strength. Dust swirled. The two males stared at the closed door, dumbfounded.
They could hear her descent down the stairs from the corridor outside, before the sound finally faded.
Maou Sadao looked after the invisible 'Emi' and spat.
"Apologise to every Sadao-san in Japan!"
In this single six mat room, on the second floor of this wooden, two-storied apartment building, there was no one to answer his cry.
"Geez… My motivation's gone since this morning."
A bag hung from his shoulder, on top of his slightly damaged uniform as he left the apartment.
"My lord, it is dangerous after all… allow me to escort you, at least to school-"
"It's fine. Nothing happened last night, and she won't cause bloodshed on the streets in the middle of the day like this. You've got work too, Ashiya, so do your own preparations. See you later then."
His sense of unease from the Hero's invasion that morning clear, the Great Demon General Alsiel, or Ashiya Shirou wished to accompany Maou to school, but the Demon King Satan, or Maou cheerfully shook his head.
"Besides, a second year student being escorted by his older brother who scares women to school is shameful."
"That's not the problem! Is it really the time to worry about your reputation with your school friends when you could become the victim of a crime?"
"No, it's not my reputation. It's okay, and it's not my classmates, she might still be around here."
Maou grimaced and looked around their surroundings, a spring-like, peaceful street was the only thing around them.
"We don't want the hero to thing the Demon King has to be guarded when he walks around outside."
"Guh… certainly not."
Ashiya had an expression that seemed to have his heartbreak written into it.
"See. It's fine. You go to work. See you."
"Please, please take care!"
Maou stepped out towards a new day from room 201 in the 60 year old, wooden apartment building, Villa Rosa Sasazuka, being seen off by Ashiya's voice, straining with lamentation.
In the warm weather that would make you work up a sweat if you walked quickly, the cherry blossoms had already mostly fallen in Sasazuka.
"Fallen blossoms, huh? Geez, I could do without the bad omens right at the start of second year."
Maou thought back to last year, when he arrived in this town, to this apartment.
While the world of Ente Isla was wide, there were none who didn't know the name of the Demon King Satan. That was the ruler of the demon realm, where the creatures of darkness writhed, his name was synonymous with terror and cruelty.
His ambition was to invade the world watched over by the gods- the Continent of the Holy Cross, known as Ente Isla. He would conquer the world of mankind, and create a paradise for all the creatures of darkness.
What caused humanity to despair was that this unimaginably powerful, peerless Demon King commanded four Archdemons, each of whom possessed abilities that rivalled his own.
The four Great Demon Generals were Alsiel, Lucifer, Adrammelech, and Malacoda.
Ente Isla floated upon the Ignora Ocean, centred on an especially large continent, it was bordered by continents to the north, east, south and west that appeared to form a cross. The Demon King spread demonic power over the whole nation, sending an army with each of his Great Generals, Alsiel to the east, Lucifer to the west, Adrammelech to the north and Malacoda to the south; The gods' influence, originating from humans was brought to within a single step to destruction.
However, an anomaly occurred with Lucifer's army on the western continent.
A report was received that Lucifer's army was obliterated at the hands of a single human.
The human that routed Lucifer's army called themselves 'Hero' and had gathered a few survivors and lead a resistance.
Lucifer was an angel that had fallen from heaven.
The western continent was where the closest existence among humans to heaven, the Theocracy's influence was strong. Thus it was judged that Lucifer, who was knowledgeable in Heaven's circumstances, would be most effective against the Theocracy, who fought by borrowing Heaven's power. However, that scheme amounted to nothing in the face of the one who called themselves 'Hero'.
Still, in a drawn out battle, one or two schemes would go awry. Satan underestimated the hero, thinking that Lucifer's army had been at fault, and that concentrating the remaining Generals' power, they would be easily able to exterminate the hero.
That was the start of his mistakes.
Satan thought of humans as little more than insects crawling through the earth.
However, thinking about it, was there any way to wipe out insects? A poisonous insect may be beneath the notice of a mighty lion, but could it not fell the latter with a single bite?
Following on Lucifer, both Adrammelech and Malacoda were defeated successively within the year. Alsiel, the wisest of the four abandoned the eastern lands at that point and proposed a defensive battle on the central continent to protect the Demon King's stronghold. The invasion of Ente Isla, that had taken long months and years to progress was reversed within a mere year. Even Satan could no longer maintain his optimism.
Under the name of the Theocracy, along with the Hero, the humans rapidly regrew in strength and advanced on the central continent of Ente Isla that was under the dominion of the Demon Lord with an army that was shockingly huge.
The central continent was taken in the blink of an eye. At the hands of a human called a Hero, who he despised as an insect, the influence of the Demon King's army was thoroughly shattered.
Satan and Alsiel met the attack of the Hero and the Hero's three companions in their stronghold on the central continent.
Even they couldn't simply settle things when facing off against the Demon King and his Great General. Even so, the Hero's strength certainly won out of Satan and Alsiel.
Eventually, the Hero's holy sword struck off one of Satan's horns, and Alsiel suggested retreat to Satan. At this rate, they may not only be defeated, but their very existence annihilated.
Satan agreed, while reluctantly, to this decision. Namely to flee Ente Isla. To escape to another world and await the day their power would once again return.
Even the look on the hero's face as he leapt into a 'Gate' to another world the merest instant before the holy sword pierced his heart was not enough to ease Satan's displeasure.
With a final roar that resounded through the heavens, Satan addressed all of Ente Isla:
"Humans! I shall leave Ente Isla to you for now. But the day will come when I return to claim it for myself with my own two hands!"
Manipulating a Gate to another world at will required a suitable amount of magic, so after being wounded in their battle with the Hero, Satan and Alsiel couldn't control it.
The two of them flowed on the torrent of the Gate until they were washed up in a country in another world that astounded the two Archdemons with its level of civilisation.
Satan and Alsiel were confronted with sights they had never seen before- tall buildings whose height surpassed a demon's comprehension, and a mysterious energy that filled the night with countless sparkling lights.
The two were in a large city, but within a dingy alley. It was interposed between titanic buildings and noises they had never heard reached their ears from outside. Just what intelligent life ruled this place, what fearsome beasts existed here?
Even the chill of the air cut at their skin, making it seem like winter, relentlessly sapping the strength from their wounded bodies.
"You appear to be in quite the predicament, don't you?"
Not even a dozen seconds had passed as they regained their bearings when they were spoken to in a language they didn't recognise.
The thing that met their gaze as they turned to look over their shoulders was a figure that only had the basic body parts to be a human, that seemed to be emanating an ominous aura.
"Fu fu fu, beg your pardon."
Indeed, the Demon King, the Great Demon General, demons that made the world tremble in fear were they paralysed?
In shock, in fear.
"Oh, seems I startled you."
Had they ever before been enveloped by these feelings in the past?
The source of the aura perhaps guessed their feelings and slightly softened the atmosphere as he held out a single piece of paper to the two.
It was incredibly thin and glossy compared to the parchment that humans used in Ente Isla, and on it, words that the two could understand were arranged.
"It's sudden, but I have something to discuss at length with you both."
Precisely because they could understand the words, the two archdemons felt they should absolutely not trifle with this existence.
If they were, with their wounded bodies, this time, their light may actually be put out.
"M-m-m-m-my lord! Let us flee!"
"Wait a minute! My back's out."
However, because of the debilitating wounds received in his battle with the hero, or perhaps those from other sources, Satan's body wouldn't move.
"My lord, hur- M-my lord!?
"…Are you… Alsiel?"
They then noticed.
Each of them didn't have the form they knew.
The huge bodies, horns, tail and carapace that once ruled over all of the Demon Realm, that struck fear into the hearts of humans, all had vanished.
Their forms were that of humans.
The forms of humans, oppressed, destroyed.
"Fu fu fu!"
Then, their eyes once more turned to the existence that seemed to be laughing at their panic, the ominous aura from earlier seemed to have weakened slightly.
In response, their eyes, clouded by battle, wounds and panic started to be able to see the full picture of this existence, and once more the two of them shook to their bones.
"You don't need to be so reserved."
Guessing at their intentions to flee, the voice was filled with a kindness and an irrefutable majesty.
"It's nothing bad, you know?"
Then, a screech echoed through the alley that glittered all the more in the dead of night, it was just a stray cat looking for the left overs disgorged by the gluttonous city.
Though they had escaped with their lives from the Hero, they had escaped to an unknown beast, sharpening its fangs.
That rested upon the Demon King Satan's feelings, who had tried to subjugate the world with demonic power.
In the midst of his faded consciousness, the events leading to his defeat by the Hero raced through his mind in an instant, as if he were experiencing them once more.
"My lord, my lord!"
He opened his eyes to a unfamiliar voice, he was relieved that he still lived, but he noticed he was in a strange room, and was convinced the strange happenings hadn't finished.
He'd just been shaken awake, he still wasn't used to Alsiel with a human body and voice.
Even though the plain chandelier was fitted with a tube bulb and let out a flickering pallid light, it illuminated the room.
He could understand the bedding knitted from vegetation, the stained walls and the hard glass windows.
All the other things, while they had close analogues in the human dwellings he had glimpsed in Ente Isla, clearly differed fundamentally in origin and design, so he couldn't possibly judge what type of situation they had fallen into.
"Alsiel… what is…"
"My lord, do you recall what happened right after we left the gate?"
"When we left- ugh! My head!"
Just as he was about to say that of course he remembered, the place where the horn that the Hero had sent flying was connected to his head began aching fiercely and he curled in pain.
"I, I saw something terrifying. But, why did I think it was terrifying?"
A mysterious lifeform that appeared to be a human woman, that he met in a gap between huge buildings was in his memories.
It was a large woman, the very clothes she was clad in seemed to give off light, but even so she was human, not something one worthy of being a Demon King should be scared of.
And yet even the memories alone were enough to make him shiver to the bone.
"We were brought here by that person."
"What!? Alsiel, you went along with a human-"
Satan began to yell, but Alsiel raised a hand.
"Resistance was futile. My lord, this world… has no demonic power."
Satan was lost for words.
Demonic power was needed for demons to live, it was their most basic energy source.
In the Demonic Realm and Ente Isla, they could replenish it freely from the atmosphere.
"So the reason we have these bodies…"
"Is because we lost demonic power…?"
Their horns, large bodies, wings, none of them were there.
These pitiful human bodies were all that were left of them after losing their demonic power.
"I still have the faintest remains of demonic power, Alsiel, do you…"
"No. I've confirmed it several times in these last few hours. I no longer have even the remnants that lingered when we fled. It was either absorbed by the Gate, or by some function of this world… Regardless, I awakened much quicker than you, my lord, that person said that if we wished to live here, we should skim over this."
So saying, Alsiel held out a sheaf of paper.
Not once had he seen such a thing in Ente Isla, the papers were held to a fixed standard, and were startlingly smooth to the touch.
"Who is she… Does she knew we're demons?"
Satan asked while scrutinising the paper, but Alsiel replied with an unexpected answer.
"I asked her at length, but she evaded the question."
It may not have sounded so impressive like that, but there weren't many humans with the nerve to evade the questioning of the Great Demon General Alsiel.
"She didn't answer my questions and said this. To think well on why we now hold these forms, and to skim over this if we want to live."
Satan furrowed his brows when suddenly, he caught sight of his and Alsiel's bodies in the window.
No matter how he looked at it, they were human bodies.
Those small, unreliable bodies clashed with the mantle and uniform they wore as demons, eyes that could bring a human to their knees at a mere glance shook forlornly.
If he were to look down at his own hands, there would be soft, human skin that would break from simply being thrust through wooden thorns.
It was not befitting of the name Demon King, to have such weak hands.
"What did you say?"
Satan nearly snatched the sheaf and then cast his eyes at the writing on it.
Thus, he noticed an anomaly, and with his head still bowed, asked Alsiel.
"Can you read?"
The characters on the paper weren't those of any country in Ente Isla.
He had never seen them before.
Alsiel nodded gravely.
They could read these never before seen characters without using demonic power.
""…High School Entrance Exam Provisions?""
That was written on the sheaf of papers.
The human woman they met after washing up in Japan appeared before Satan and Alsiel after they spent a night in unease, not knowing where they were.
They were in a room in the housing complex she ran, it was an exceedingly small room, but with how debilitated Maou and Ashiya were, they couldn't even leave the room.
She called herself Shiba Miki, and in front of what they presumed was a human, the two archdemons couldn't say a word.
The words of the human shaped person with a rainbow coloured hat atop a rainbow coloured dress, wearing rainbow coloured shoes and a rainbow coloured handbag simply washed over them.
"If you gentlemen understand your current situation, I think that you will understand you have no choice but to abide by my words."
Shiba spoke and then continued uninterestedly in the face of their shaking.
"This is my property, so if you have no other prospects for living, I would like you to use it. Things such as rent can be arranged later."
Shiba then dispassionately lined up various papers in front of them.
"Write your names here, please. You are capable of the characters?"
The two simply nodded their heads in assent.
"In which case, although you are living 'here' I believe that you know what is needed. I don't wish to cause troubles for my tenants, so kindly take care of yourself, and restrain yourselves."
At that moment, Shiba's red lips seemed to trace the arc of a crescent moon of blood.
"You will not do wrong."
Demon King Satan and Great Demon General Alsiel once more experienced 'fainting due to fear' in a short period of time.
In the week since then, Shiba had laid all the foundations for them to live in Japan.
The two were given a family census and address in this country where it was impossible to live without them and money.
The only influence in this process that they had had was the names they would call themselves in Japan, Maou Sadao and Ashiya Shirou.
The certificate of residence carrying the address Villa Rosa Sasazuka room 201, Sasazuka, Shibuya ward, Tokyo Metropolitan Area, showed beyond a doubt that the two of them had been given residence in Japan.
However, neither Satan or Alsiel could relax in the slightest.
They couldn't believe that Shiba, unfamiliar as she was would work so tirelessly with no recompense like a saint.
They were filled with trepidation as they recovered their stamina and from their wounds and worried over what she would demand in exchange for arranging things so they could slip into a live among the humans in this country.
Before long, the day that made the reason for that paper labelled 'High School Entrance Exam Provisions' clear came.
She requested two things as a reward for everything.
The first was that they would find a job that would provide them wages as quickly as possible and begin to pay rent for the apartment.
Rather than a reward, this was nothing more than what was expected for living in rented property, but the problem was the other condition.
"One of you two will become a student at the school here."
As Shiba said this, she produced a pamphlet on the system called the 'high school'.
Sasazuka North Metropolitan High School.
It was a generic metropolitan high school that could be found all over the Tokyo area.
"Becoming a student at this school, just wh… what purpose would it serve?"
Even as he started arrogantly, Satan lost that attitude as he spoke and transitioned to a non-committal statement.
Shiba replied immediately, almost as if she were waiting for such a question.
"At this point, none whatsoever. In the future, who knows? Regardless."
The two of them, now used to Siba, could take her smile directly for the first time.
"Please, have a wholesome school life."
But, they couldn't withstand the sigh afterwards and ended up fainting after all.
The two had washed up in Japan after the start of autumn, the end of August, yet the warmth still lingered.
There was just a half of the year before high school entrance exams.
Shiba said nothing specific as to how she had given Satan the right to take the exam when he hadn't graduated from a middle school.
However, the two had no right of refusal.
After various considerations, it was decided that 'Maou Sadao', who even if you looked optimistically could only be called a young looking adult, would be the student, and 'Ashiya Shirou', who would give no objection to being called a tall youth, would work for their rent and lifestyle.
Even if Maou weakened, even if he became a boy, he was still the Demon King.
Without wasting the scarce magic he had remaining, he dedicated his mind to not only accumulating the knowledge for the exam, but anything that he deemed would be useful in a general Japanese school and passed the entrance exam for Sasazuka North High School.
"The landlady as my guardian- no way."
Maou said brazenly as he gazed at his results with a not entirely dissatisfied face.
"Of course, I'm sure there are many occasions that if something happens that they would want to speak to a guarantor."
"That's fine, but whaddya think I should do about the first interview in April?"
In the half a year since they arrived, his tone and way of speaking had shifted to that of an informal high schooler.
At this point, none would doubt that he was a human living in Japan.
"With all due respect, I believe in this circumstances, that should fall to me."
"Guess so. What are you then?"
"Of course, I am one of the Great Demon Generals who has sworn fealty to the Demon Ki-"
"You think you can introduce yourself to the homeroom teacher like that? Course you can't. You're… not my dad, we don't look enough different in age."
"I believe that saying we were a pair of siblings would be the least unreasonable."
"Well, guess so."
"In which case, I shall be the younger-"
"You a moron?"
Ashiya really said what Maou thought he would, so he laughed.
"What're you the younger brother for when we're sayin' you're my guardian? Obviously you're the elder."
"B-but to claim the august position of your elder brother…"
"By appearance and actual age, you're older, so it's not a problem. In the end, we're only doing that for outsiders. You can just behave like an older brother when you need to."
"J-just when I need too… Hmmm, can I do that…?"
"It'll be an issue if you can't. I'm counting on you."
"I-I shall do so. However, my lord, would not being cousins work just as well as-"
"Wait, Ashiya, you may as well practice. Try behaving like an elder brother."
As whatever Ashiya was going to say was interrupted by Maou, Ashiya stiffened ramrod straight and shook.
"P-please forgive me, but that is-"
"What's with that 'forgive me', I have, so do it. Seriously, no one's here and you can't, you going to be able to when there is?"
"No buts. You used to do it way back when, so do it."
At this terrifying order from the 'younger brother', the 'older brother' let his gaze drift skyward and gradually opened his mouth as his body shook.
"R-right… uhm, well, uhh, t-there exists, I mean, there's a… problem with our behaving as siblings."
"My lord, your and my-"
"Oi, what kind of person calls their brother lord, just use my name."
"…Maou, your and my-"
"I ain't some branch chief, my first name."
"…S-S-Sadao, your and my," on the verge of tears despite being the older of the 'brothers', Ahiya frantically burst out with the rest of his words, "surnames are different, how will we explain that!?"
"Aah, that's right. That's right, our names are different."
"I didn't have an inkling it would turn out like this… That's it!" Despite finishing his sentence, Ashiya's voice grew loud and hurried. "Right, what about this? We originally had the same surname, but for some reason, our parents separated and you took our mother's name. T-then, once the family registry is investigated, there will be… a difference, won't there… it also makes the setting subtly weighty, does it not?"
He failed this time, but Maou continued without criticising him.
"You're right. There's a lot on the family registries. So we're relatives. If I was living with my older cousin, that'd be fine. We'll say my parents are working abroad, and you're already independent or something."
"In the first place, my lord-"
Ashiya grit his teeth and groaned.
"…Sadao! A-are there records of your parents?"
"Well, if we end up needing them, we can just ask the landlady, right? She commissioned all of our official records, we can get her to act as our foster parent too. Anyway, our surnames are different because we're cousins. You'll act as my guardian to begin with and if it becomes absolutely necessary, we can ask the landlady for help, okay?"
It seemed they were still pretending to be siblings.
"…My lord, this is bad for my heart."
"We've both gotta get used to it. I'm gonna have to check myself around you too."
Ashiya, pallid despite not actually doing anything finally gave up and Maou looked pityingly down.
"However, my lord, just who is the landlady?"
"Appearances aside, I am certain she is one of the people of this world we can feel no holy energy or demonic power from. However, from her behaviour, I can't help but feel she knows we are not of this world."
"And on top of that, why's she actin' as our patron? Well, ain't like thinking about it'll help. We can only eat because of her, and we couldn't live like this without her support. It ain't like she's forcin' us either, so let's just dance in the palm of her hand."
Maou said as he looked up at the uniform hanging on the wall.
"Anyway, from tomorrow, I'll be Maou Sadao of Sasahata North High class 1-A!"
A stray gust of wind blew the late-blooming cherry blossoms into the room.
"I'm counting on you, aniki."
"N…no worries, Sadao."
From that day forth, the Demon King Satan, and the Great Demon General Alsiel new lives began in Japan.
A year later.
Maou spent his time looking like an exemplary student to everyone, and reached second year without incident.
The interview with his guardian and Ashiya going to school occurred without undue trouble and his grades were the very definition of excellence.
He had lots of friends, regardless of their genders and was remembered fondly by his homeroom teacher from first year, who would also continue in the post into his second year, Andou.
Taking the household's financial circumstances into consideration, he wasn't part of any club, but as he was athletic to begin with, he was occasionally invited to take part and substitute with clubs.
As of now, whilst he'd been cautious since he was instructed to become a student by Shiba, nothing strange had happened around him, and his school life was peaceful.
It might be said that it was strange for a Demon King that had attempted to take over the world to enjoy school life was itself abnormal, but it was really peaceful, so there was no other choice.
Maou was currently a ten minute walk from the apartment, checking the time as he stood next to the ticket barriers for Sasazuka station on the Keiou line.
Just as he was thinking he was right on time, "Morning, Sadao." A boy called out, passing through the ticket barriers as he slapped Maou companionably on the back.
Maou returned the greeting friendlily.
"You ready for that English reading in fourth period?"
"What, askin' to see my notes right at the start of the new year?"
His classmate since last year, Koumura Yoshiya, nodded cheerfully.
"Man, it's weird, you being so easy with it makes me want to show you."
"My frank personality is my one strength!"
"Frankly study ahead of time then."
Yoshiya was laughing openly, but in the next moment.
Something long had fallen onto his head, sending stars spinning in his eyes.
"Don't sponge off the people that actually prepared after passing the year. You too Sadao, don't spoil him!"
A harsh, girl's voice came from behind Yoshiya.
"Morning, Kaori, 'sup?"
"Shoujii… you just hit me with a quiver…"
Standing there, with long black hair, a female Sasahata North High School uniform and carrying a long thing that was much taller than she was, was their classmate, Shouji Kaori.
She was part of the archery club, the long thing was a bow, and the thing she just hit Yoshiya with was the quiver with the arrows inside.
"Don't come cryin' to me if the arrows get bent and miss!"
Yoshiya was also part of the archery club, but his bow was at school at the moment.
The two of them were childhood friends since elementary school, and they'd always been like this since Maou knew them.
"I'll just make you pay me back if they're bent."
"Shoujii, you little…"
"Come on you two, we'll be in the way if we stick around here!"
As soon as she'd said what she wanted to, Kaori walked off, Maou half smiled at her back and Yoshiya followed after them while holding his head.
Koushuu Highway ran parallel with the Keiou line, as you crossed it, there was a street known as the Hundred Street Shopping District.
"Ah, there she is."
Maou spotted someone through the crowds of people leaving Sasazuka station, people heading towards it passing the corner in a rush.
They spotted him too and waved widely.
Maou answered in kind, Kaori raised her bow and Yoshiya raised his hand a beat later.
The light finally went green and the three weaved their way through the crowds and crossed.
The girl who was waiting for them and gave them a normal greeting them with an especially energetic smile, and then after looking at each of their faces in turns, perhaps seemed to realise something.
Without reservation, full of confidence, she asked.
"Koumura-kun, did you do something to make Kao angry again?"
"No way, I didn't do anythin'."
"He didn't do anything at all," Yoshiya and Kaori each had their own reactions. "It's because Yoshiya takes advantage of being spoiled if he's spoiled. I had to see this, so I, being the kind hearted soul I am, spoiled him right away."
Kaori spoke while shrugging her shoulders as if there was no helping it, and pointed at the other boy.
The girl blinked blankly and followed her finger.
"Did something happen between Koumura-kun and Koa, Maou-san?"
"Well, we'll chat on the way. It's nothing you'd be surprised at now, Chii-chan, just Yoshiya ain't changed even as a second year."
These three were his classmates and friends that Maou always went to school with.
The last of them, Sasaki Chiho, was a girl with distinguishing features in her chestnut brown hair and large eyes; she tilted her head without understanding what Maou meant.
"Oi, Sadao, you sayin' I ain't grown?"
Yoshiya bumped into him.
"Yoshiya, do you think you have grown?"
Kaori's sharp words were heaped onto Yoshiya.
"Kao, you'll make Koumura-kun feel bad if you say that. I'm sure he tries hard at something! Probably!"
Chiho tried to hold back Kaori's snappishness.
"Chii-chan, Chii-chan, saying it like that will actually make him feel worse."
Maou jumped in.
The four of them, Maou Sadao, Koumura Yoshiya, Shouji Kaori and Sasaki Chiho, had been friends since they were in class 1-A, and this was one of the regular occurrences that had happened countless times since last year.
"And who's hitting people with a quiver?"
"Ohh, Sadao, I didn't do such a thing, did I?"
"First off, Yoshiya was in the wrong for trying to look at Sadao's English notes."
"W-what, Sasaki, who else am I supposed to ask?"
"You rely on him too much! You shouldn't let him either, Maou-san! You spoil him too much!"
"Now then, Yoshiya, you start running and study like mad. We'll protect Sadao's notes to the last."
"Are you tryin' to kill me!?"
"Well, if you'd studied prop'ly from the start, you wouldn't die."
"S-Sadao! This is the end! Help me!"
"Nah, I get the feelin' if I go, Chii-chan and Kaori will be mad at me."
"I'll give you lunch!"
"Aniki always makes me a lunchbox."
Yoshiya's scream reverberated through the skies over Sasazuka along with the laughter of the other three, dispersing on the spring breeze.
"Maou-san? Is something wrong?"
Maou suddenly stopped and looked back.
Chiho noticed that and in response to her question.
"Nah, it's nothin'"
Maou shook his head with a smile and kept walking like it was nothing.
"By the way, Sasachii, how come you're still so formal with Sadao? Even though you're in the same year."
"Eh? I wonder why. I think it's because Maou-san felt kinda like an adult from the start… it's not like there's any deep meaning to it though… is it weird?"
Her last words were directed to Maou and felt a little insistent.
"Nah, I'm pretty used to it now, so either's fine."
Maou knew from experience with his 'brother' that getting someone to change how they spoke was surprisingly difficult.
"That's it, Sasaki gave you an adult like name because you feel like a repeater. So you are older than me, Sa-"
"Good luck with your studying, Yoshiya."
"I'm sorry! I'm so sorry! Oh Mister First-In-School! I beg of you, help me!"
"That was close, that was close… did he notice me?"
A little back from the four who were enjoying themselves, in the shadow of a telephone pole, a woman had hidden herself.
It was the woman that called herself Yusa Emi who had cursed Maou as the Demon King a little earlier.
She was dressed in a pale, long shirt that showed a tinge of spring, soft, three-quarter length jeans and white heels, with a middle sized bag hanging off her shoulder.
It was the same outfit she had worn that morning when she visited room 201 of Villa Rosa Sasazuka, it may seem tired as if she wore the same thing two days running, but if you were to avoid that, it was what an office lady in Japan looked like when they went to work.
She timidly eased out of the shadow and once more found where Maou and the other three were enjoying themselves a little further ahead.
"He really is… being a student."
Emi concentrated on the three gathered around Maou that seemed like classmates, but she couldn't feel any kind of abnormality from them.
At the very least, they were normal humans, and even to Emi's inexperienced ear, the conversation that drifted faintly back sounded like nothing more than normal conversation between students.
"Ahh, I've got no more time."
She wanted to tail them a little longer, but she had circumstances of her own.
She had to work.
Let alone breakfast, she hadn't had a bite to eat since the night before, and hadn't slept a wink.
Emi's job required concentration, and there wasn't anywhere at work to buy snacks to fill her empty stomach.
A lack of sleep alone would make it bad enough, so he would have to find a convenient place to get breakfast and continue her surveillance that evening.
It grated on her to take her enemy's words of being poor and having nowhere to run at face value, but she wagered on it and turned her back.
She looked around the area and decided that it would be quickest to get the train from Hatagaya station rather than Sasazuka.
She worked in Shinjuku, and if she got the train from Hatagaya on the new Keiou line, she'd arrive by the west and south entrances to Shinjuku station.
Emi quickly walked along the streets and as she finally returned to Koushuu highway, she relied on her memories of the area and a map app on the slim phone that she drew out of her shoulder bag to head to Hatagaya.
As she approached the station, she saw a fast food shop that sold mainly burgers, a MgRonald's.
"I can just get breakfast from there."
They should have their breakfast menu being served at this time in the morning.
Emi rushed into the store and up to the empty counter.
"Hmm, can I get a bacon and egg sandwich set, with vegetable ju-"
She was giving her order to the attendant when she stopped mid-word.
The assistant was staring at Emi's face in shock as if he'd seen a ghost.
In the next instant, as if mimicking his expression, Emi's face stiffened in surprise too.
Standing at the counter, taking her order in a MgRonald's uniform was the Demon King's aide, the Great Demon General Alsiel, who called himself Ashiya Shirou.
"W-why are you…"
"What are you doing…"
Emi worked under contract at a call centre that specialised in communications.
Working in a subsidiary building of the mobile communications giant, Docodemo, she mainly handled customer complaints and support.
It seemed like there were few candidates suitable to handle complaints, and Emi's first job in this world was like that.
They were shorthanded so the pay was high, and Emi, having nerves of steel, yet still a beautiful voice, was a priceless asset to the company.
And on top of that, Emi had the ability to understand all languages in the world.
Even if they spoke to her in a language she had never heard, she possessed a kind of spiritual sympathy that allowed her to understand the concepts. And her general meaning could be understood by the caller. Whether this was English, French, South-Korean or Chinese, she appeared fluent in all of them.
Emi changed in the locker rooms into her uniform, consisting of a dark blue vest, a straight skirt, a blouse and a green tartan ribbon on top before clocking in and going to the seat assigned for her to work in. She didn't have a set seat because she wasn't a full-time employee but as they were understaffed, she usually worked at the same island in the office.
Her co-worker in the adjacent seat spoke to her. She was her closest friend in Japan, they'd started on the same day and ended up sitting next to each other. Her bright brown short-cut stood out atop her dark blue uniform.
"W-what's up? Your complexion looks really bad."
"…I missed breakfast, and I haven't had enough sleep either."
Emi's way of speaking and complexion made Rika doubt that was it, but she felt a negative aura that made her hesitate to ask more and decided that she'd invite Emi to a nice place at lunch time.
On the one hand, while Emi was thankful that Rika didn't feel like asking anything else, she also felt utterly exhausted while she was doing nothing.
"I wish the two of them were at least doing evil."
Mentally, Emi was simulating following her original objective and subjugating the Demon King and Alsiel.
"Brothers Killed. Ambushed returning home."
Together with that headline, Emi would doubtlessly be hunted by the police as a criminal.
"…Even if I had enough Holy Power to go back, the aftertaste is too bad."
Emi thought back at Maou's classmates' smiles and groaned.
Emilia Justina hadn't been able to defeat the Demon King Satan and had leapt immediately after him into the gate he had made.
However, perhaps because he was wounded when he made it, she was caught up in the violent currents of the gate, and when she came to, was lying right in the middle of Tokyo.
There was no sign of the Demon King or Alsiel, or their power, without even knowing that they were in the same world, Emi loitered around Tokyo alone.
She didn't know how the demons had come to live where they were, but at the very least, Emi loitered in Japan for a year, and obtained an address.
Just as Satan had seen through her in that six-mat room, she too had spent her days saving the energy required to wield miraculous magic, 'Holy Power'.
In Japan, no, on Earth, there was no Holy Power.
The basic energy that was replenished from the atmosphere solely through breathing in Ente Isla didn't exist.
In her heyday, wielding the full might of a hero, Emi could leave entire armies as less than cinders, let alone a person or two, but now, that wasn't the case.
In the same way as the Demon King and Alsiel had been wounded and come to Japan, Emilia hadn't been able to deal the final blow and her Holy Power and stamina had been drained by the fight, and she jumped into the gate without restoring them and came to Japan.
Even so, she was confident her physical abilities and magic she could use that she would be far beyond a normal person, but if she were to use that strength, there was no guarantee she would have the energy to return to Ente Isla.
They both appeared to be normal humans without even remnants of demonic power being perceivable, but they had already spent a year in this country.
Who knew what kind of underhanded tactics they had that might give them demonic power back, and if they resisted more than she expected, the tables might be turned and it would end in her defeat.
Emi had awaited help from her comrades in Ente Isla, but she had finally found the Demon King and Alsiel, and her comrades hadn't met with her.
If they had, they would be keeping a careful eye on the Demon King and Alsiel's circumstances.
"I couldn't do anything else, but still, still," Emi murmured in a voice that even Rika, sitting next to her, couldn't hear, "why didn't I do anything else back then?"
A year and a bit since jumping into the gate.
Emi's fate had once again changed the night before.
While she couldn't feel their demonic power, from various factors, Emilia was sure that the Demon King and Alsiel had hidden at least once in the area where the Shibuya, Setagaya and Suginami wards met and was walking through Eifuku city on the way home.
A school-uniform clad boy straddling a bike passed Emi.
If that was all, she wouldn't pay it any mind, but she heard an unbelievably loud crash and squealing from ahead.
She suddenly raised her head and saw the boy that had passed her on the bike waiting for the lights, and a misshapen remodelled car racing towards him.
He'll be hit.
Her thoughts were instant.
Having just stopped for the lights, the boy wouldn't be able to avoid it.
The car didn't appear to be braking at all.
As she noticed it, her body moved.
"Light burst shot!!"
To avert the approaching car, Emi fired off a bullet of light with no hesitation.
Then she herself ran full pelt after it.
Emi caught up with the boy by being irrational and running after her technique.
At the instant the light bullet impacted the oncoming car, she gathered the boy and the bike into her arms and leapt with all her might.
As they were in the air, looking down, the technique hit the car and span it once in the air, falling onto its roof and coming to a stop by crashing into the guardrail as they landed on the opposite side of the road.
"Are you okay?"
Emi questioned the boy in her arms.
He seemed confused, but at any rate, he was safe, so Emi breathed a sigh of relief.
Emi looked around the surroundings immediately.
Looking closer, there were several vehicles embedded in the Shuto flyover's foundations and guardrails, putting the scale of the accident into perspective.
Emi was glaring at the overturned car, but there was no sign of anyone crawling out.
The impact shouldn't have been enough to kill, but as she became curious about the driver, she somehow heard the boy's tiny murmur.
The surroundings were filled with a clamour, that of the expressway, and that of the congestion caused by the accident. Emi heard those words over that tumult of noise.
Her entire body froze to absolute zero.
She held herself stiff to hide her shaking from the boy.
He had short black hair, was wearing an open school uniform with a t-shirt underneath.
The bike was an ordinary city cycle.
He was an everyday, a truly everyday student.
However, Emi had noticed.
She'd thought he was around here.
She had even predicted he may have lost his demonic power.
She'd never thought he would have gone so far as to take on human form.
To say nothing of that of a boy.
"…It can't be."
Even so, her throat dried up and a cold sweat ran down her neck.
Her heart pounded.
The boy wasn't surprised.
He didn't feel afraid.
Not because of the car, but because of an unthinkable technique sending the car flying and a passing woman picking up both him and the bike and leaping.
Emi didn't know how to put her thoughts in order.
It was so sudden.
But she knew a sudden reunion was improbable.
But still, it was sudden.
She had saved his life.
The Demon King Satan's Life.
As the countless approaching sirens washed over her, Emi fell into despair.
After being picked up for interview and taken to the police station, them being taken to their homes in separate patrol cars was a further miscalculation for Emi.
As she reached her home in Eifuku city, room 501 in Urban Heights Eifuku, as soon as the patrol car left, she called a taxi and returned to Sasazuka.
She'd taken a note of the boy who looked like the Demon King's address at the police station.
Relying on those words, she soon found an apartment building with a patrol car stopped outside it.
The address matched the one she had heard and surprised her.
It didn't compare to where Emi lived, the building was worthy of being called shabby and there was a single room with lights on.
Perhaps the police had brought it back, but she saw the bike too.
There was no mistaking it.
In this world, in this town, this was the place where the boy that had said 'technique' after seeing that accident lived.
Her rash thoughts of marching into the room there and then stopped there.
She didn't know how many opponents she'd be dealing with, she had to be careful of the police, and there might be many other inhabitants of the building.
If there were, who knew what kind of underhanded tricks the boy would pull.
The boy hadn't acted like he had any doubts of Emi.
But if he'd noticed her strength and magic, it was completely possible that he knew who she was.
Maybe she should run.
Or perhaps, he had heard her address and would attack her home in Eifuku.
Both were plausible, and Emi couldn't move.
So at the same time as the police left, she hid within the premises and kept watch over the surroundings, spending the night in the back garden.
In the end, no one left the apartment, and went to attack anywhere.
But of course, hearing the boy's voice going about preparations in the morning, she finally couldn't bear it.
Forced by excessive stress, Emilia climbed the stairs with her head fatigued by thoughts of finally dealing with it, a lack of sleep and stress.
Even if she had been calm, she couldn't have just headed home to Eifuku.
She'd finally found him.
The world's, humanity's enemy.
If she missed this chance, she might end up just wondering the world again.
She couldn't stand that any more.
The surnames 'Ashiya' and 'Maou' were written in permanent marker on a strip of kamaboko wood next to the door.
"Truly inside, Ma-ou huh, are you mocking me?"
Emi rang the bell without hesitation.
"Who is it?"
"Oh my, what a polite greeting! Great Demon General Alsiel!"
At that moment, a shaken presence came from inside.
"W-who are you!?"
The answer was just the same.
"Who am I? That's right, you said the same thing at the Demon King's castle. You can't have forgotten can you!? The Hero Emilia's name!"
In the next instant, after wandering in another world for a long time, the battle of destiny would recommence… or so it should have.
The Demon King Satan had become Maou Sadao and was entering second year in Sasahata North High School after gaining the guardianship of his landlady.
On top of that, though he'd lost his power, that he hadn't lost his ambition was shown by his proclamation: "I will become Student Council President in this world."
Asking her to believe that after a sleepless night was impossible, but afterwards, the completely normal appearance of a student that he gave off, coupled with seeing the Great Demon General Alsiel with a business smile conspired with her fatigue and lack of sleep,and not even a Hero could stand against it.
That day, she had a string of trivial mistakes that she'd normally never make and was reprimanded by the floor leader.
On top of that, there were more enquiries than usual, and while she was curious about Maou, she couldn't leave so early, so stayed, exhausted until her shift was over.
And on top of that, she had to go to Sasazuka and watch them again.
"…I can't, I just can't."
She didn't think anything would change so soon, but with the Demon King as an opponent, she couldn't let her guard down, and if a fight were to break out, she didn't think she could win like this.
"If only… I had someone else…"
She'd return home and rest.
But she was scared even of that decision.
Emi stood stock still in the homegoing rush at Shinjuku station and wondered what to do for a while.
"Maou-san, are you okay? You've been staring around."
"Ah, it's nothin'."
The sky was dyed red, and Maou and Chiho were heading home together.
Chiho was also part of the archery club, and only walked with Maou like this on days she wasn't in the club.
Normally, Yoshiya and Kaori would be with them, but Kaori had things to do with her family, and Yoshiya was going somewhere with other friends, so they'd left before them.
"I was just thinking it's a nice change to go home with just you."
"Th…" No one would notice Chiho's scarlet cheeks under the red sky. "That's right!"
Of course, Maou didn't notice either, more accurately was focused on something else.
Maou had noticed Emi's presence that morning on his way to school.
Amongst the morning rush, if someone was erasing their presence and making the space seem blank, they'd stand out even if they didn't want to.
Emi had appeared exhausted for some reason that morning, evidently her judgement had been impaired.
It was the same as a ninja wearing ninja clothes slipping into a crowd of normal people, they couldn't help but stand out, but he hadn't been able to relax until he went home.
But when he searched around now, he couldn't see any signs of her, so was relieved it was a needless worry, however.
"Well, it's still gonna be a hassle, ain't it…"
He couldn't just leave it with Emi, the Hero Emilia having discovered him.
She'd withdrawn quietly that morning, but who knew when she'd come for his head, he felt that he'd do that.
While he didn't think that she'd start a fight that would drag his friends into it, Emi not being able to misuse her holy power was nothing more than a guess on his part, so he couldn't relax all through class.
"Haa, what'll I do tomorrow?"
"I know right, it's tough."
For some reason, Chiho sympathised with his monologue.
"Hmm, what is?"
"What do you mean, 'what', the bakery, right?"
Chiho blankly returned.
"The baker suddenly disappeared, so there's a lot of kids that are troubled. I heard that quite a lot of people didn't eat lunch today."
"A-ahh, that's what you mean."
Maou was confused, but soon got what Chiho was trying to say. But soon nodded in understanding.
The car that brought bread for the students to buy at lunch break hadn't come that day, the students had been told that they'd stopped business that morning.
The bakery that came was called the Rice Shop Bakery, it was a strange name to open a bakery under, but because the elderly owner offered cheap and filling breads and rice balls for the penniless students, he was popular with both the students and staff.
Because it was such a surprise, and because so many students bought their lunches from him, there were quite a few who went without lunch.
The school sold a lot of products, but the cafeteria normally hadn't got enough space to serve everyone, so in practice, there weren't enough measures in place, and the school had published a letter apologising to the parents and guardians through the students.
"I wonder why he suddenly stopped though."
"From what I heard the teachers saying when I went to the staff room, it sounds like he was in a car accident."
"An accident? But he seems so calm."
"Wasn't there an accident near here? He was caught up in that and he was injured, and they can't fix his car so quickly."
Though he didn't show it on his face, Maou was surprised, that was the accident that made him and Emi meet again.
Thinking like that, although he escaped without injury, he was suffering greatly from that car.
"So for the time being he can't re-open, and fixing the car will take money. I'm glad the worst didn't happen to the old guy."
They chattered for a while and reached Sasazuka, and finally the place where the Hundred Street Shopping District and Koushuu Highway met and stopped.
The two of them went different ways home from here, but as they reached the corner, they stopped for a while and spoke about various things.
"Still, Yoshiya collapsed from hunger."
"Kao was so taken aback, and apparently the nurse laughed too. He missed his kick at the ball while he was hungry and collapsed."
They were laughing talking about what their friends had done at lunch, but at the keyword 'hungry', their faces gained a serious tint.
"But it really is tough that he won't be coming."
"They brought out the stacking chairs and meeting table into the cafeteria, but I know that's not enough extra seats."
"That's right, for lunch you always…"
"Yeah, aniki makes me a lunchbox, so I'm fine, but I sometimes need it."
"You live alone with your brother, right?"
"We're technically cousins, but yeah. We're always low on money and our ingredients are limited, but he always manages to pull up something, just like magic."
Chiho murmured somewhat sadly.
"I normally have a lunchbox too, so I was fine, but I normally buy something for after club, so it's a bit of an issue."
"The store's too far away and while MgRonald's and such are in walking distance, the reason we bought his stuff was because of its cost and size… ah." Maou suddenly looked up. "Crap, that's the time?"
Maou pulled out an old folding phone and checked the time.
They'd spent half an hour talking after they got here.
"I gotta go home and wash the rice. Aniki said he's going to work early."
"Do you always make the dinner?"
"At the very least I do the prep work. But normally aniki says he'll do it, so I leave it to him."
In truth, Ashiya felt that having him prepare the food would be the high of disrespect and stubbornly refused to hand it over, but he couldn't say that.
Maou closed his phone hurriedly shoved it into his trouser pocket and stepped off just as the lights went green
"See ya tomorrow then, Chii-chan!"
"Ah, yeaah, see you!"
About a year had passed like that, and Maou and Chiho finally left for their own homes.
Chiho waved at Maou until she couldn't see him among the people on the other side of the road, but just as her eyes dropped to her feet.
Was Maou's phone that he'd just dropped.
"Now then, I should hurry, now's the real thing."
When Maou could no longer see Chiho, he checked his surroundings as he stepped quickly.
If Emi were going to attack, it would be when he were alone and there were no other people around.
He'd been able to avoid her this morning, but Emi wouldn't give up on defeating him so easily after a year of chasing him.
As something could happen at any time, Maou had a grim face as he headed home, ready to use the scarce remnants of his magic to resist as much as he could, but.
His stomach growled.
"The lunchboxes haven't had enough recently, man I wish the Rice Store car had come."
Ashiya's lunches were constrained by their budget, so they sometimes weren't enough for a student.
On those occasions, he'd use his stash of pocket money and buy a couple of things from the Rice Shop Bakery, but he couldn't today.
Now he couldn't supply himself with Demonic power, food was an important source of energy, tied to his life.
If the baker didn't return, it would clearly be an obstacle for Maou's health and school life.
And on top of that, he had the worry of an assassin being after his head the second he stepped out of school.
Even after walking for a while, and the apartment building being in site, his unease didn't fade.
The Hero Emilia might be waiting just around the corner, in the grounds of the building, or maybe even outside room 201.
Maou frowned at the troublesome life that seemed to be approaching right on the heels of the new year.
Maou's mouth dropped open reflexively as he saw something that ran against all of his imaginings.
The building had a communal passageway that led to the second floor.
And on the bottom step, sat a familiar woman.
"…What is she doing."
It was unmistakably the Hero Emilia, who called herself Yusa Emi, but she didn't even acknowledge his presence and was dozing off with a pained expression.
However he looked at it she'd been lying in wait for Ashiya and him, and finally fallen asleep.
"She had bags under her eyes this morning too… did she not sleep last night?"
Thinking about it, she probably knew who he was from the car accident the night before.
Knowing her mental state, maybe she'd thought he would escape, or that he would attack her in the night.
"So she watched us the entire night."
Then she'd tailed Maou to school, and then if she'd worked, no matter how much stamina you had, you'd be on the verge of exhaustion.
Maou somehow felt sorry for her, seeing her sleeping with an anguished expression.
"You've had it pretty tough too, huh."
Judging from yesterday and today, she didn't have any comrades living with her in Japan.
Rather than Maou and Ashiya who had lived together from the start, she'd had to survive on her own.
However, while he may have sympathised, what he did was a separate matter.
Maou shouted out and Emi bolted straight with a strange cry.
She tottered to her feet, but her balance was ruined and she fell back down onto the steps.
"T-the Demon King!? When did you get here!?"
"Whaddya mean, 'when'!? I just got home from school, and what do I find? Such an foreboding ambush, I've never seen the like."
"Kuh… Of all people."
"Of all people, the Hero drooling and asleep, whaat a sight, jeez."
"Eh!? Ah wah wah!"
Emi frantically wiped at her mouth and glared at Maou.
"…Y-you'd better not have done anything strange while I was asleep!"
"Don't ruin my reputation, I just said I got back! If I was gonna do something it'd be report a suspicious loiterer. I saw an exhausted office lady that had had too much pushed onto them and felt sorry for them, so like a good student, I kindly woke you up, you should be grateful!"
"W-who're you calling an exhausted lady!? Who's supposed to be a student!? Who're you feeling sorry for!?"
Emi was shouting, but she was on the floor, so there was no strength to it.
"Who'd be gra… graa… achoo!"
It was already ridiculous.
Hearing Emi's silly sneeze, exhaustion fell upon Maou with his hunger too.
"And still, sleeping in a breezy place like this when the temperature's still low, 'course you'll catch a cold."
"I-I did not! My nose is just a little dry from sleeping!"
"That takes a long time sleeping."
She couldn't get out of it anymore.
"Alright, anyway, we get it. You found us so we won't move from here, so go home and sleep. Your eyes are bloodshot and you've got huge bags under 'em."
Whether in embarrassment or shame at being comforted by the Demon King become schoolboy, Emi's cheeks flushed red and she dropped her head."
"I've gotta wash the rice, and I want to clean up before the sun sets. Ashiya's pay increased so he's busy at work. I'm coverin' for him with the housework."
Maou slipped past her and climbed the stairs.
It was an irritating way for someone so pitiful to talk even to a high schooler.
Maou inadvertently turned back and saw Emi slowly stand with her back to him and take off a shoe.
"Do you have any glue?"
Holding the shoe in her fingers, Emi turned towards him, standing on one foot.
"Because you surprised me, the heel broke. Geez, this is the worst."
Maou felt somehow let down.
"If you've got any, let me borrow it. It's just an emergency repair and then I'll go home."
"I'm glad you'll leave. I thought you were gonna throw your shoe at me."
"I'm not a child."
Emi sniffed uninterestedly and Maou grinned as he looked down at her.
Maou jerked his head, and Emi followed him, still with only one shoe on, up the stairs.
"I'm sure we've still got the stuff we used for the door plate. I'll look, so you can wait up here. I'm telling you now, once it's done, leave."
"By nameplate, do you mean that kamaboko wood? That's not for carpentry, surely…"
In Japan in another world, the Demon King and the Hero's third chance meeting ended in this relaxed conversation in room 201 of Villa Rosa Sasazuka, and then.
"W-who was t-t-t-that?"
Chiho had followed to return Maou's phone, and was pressed against the concrete block wall of the building that she'd asked for after a year, and finally came to for the first time.
"M-M-Maou-san was with a b-b-b-beautiful woman and … I-I couldn't hear what they were talking about, but it sounded adult… who is she to Maou-san?"
"Oh." Ashiya had returned home quickly from his shift at MgRonald's after being on guard from Emi visiting that morning and saw Chiho against the wall. "That's one of my lord's school friends, Sasaki Chiho."
He asked the obvious question.
"Why is she shaking against our wall?"