Demon King of the Royal Class - C.82


Charlotte had a reason for bringing me along.

“Let me know if you sense anything.”

“Okay... I’m not sure it’ll work though.”

She had brought me along without any particular expectations, just hoping that my supernatural power could work some kind of miracle. She thought that being at the last place Baalier had been might help me find a clue.

Charlotte had probably already extracted all the information she could about this place.

Yet she wanted to check things out for herself, and believe that bringing me along might make a difference.

Charlotte roamed around showing Baalier’s portrait to people and asking about him.

“Have you seen anyone who looks like this?”

Even though she must have known that I had been focusing on the scroll shops, Charlotte meticulously wandered the marketplace, asking various store owners questions.

She asked if they had seen the person in the picture, and if so, where had they gone.

Of course, this was the Aligar shopping district. If you weren’t forking over money, you were to be treated harshly.

“What are you kids doing here? This is no place for sightseeing. Get out.”

Although she was wearing a robe, Charlotte still had a small frame, and I too looked obviously underage—not fit to be an adventurer in their eyes.

As a result, no one took us seriously, and some told us that sightseeing wasn’t allowed.

This was considered relatively polite.

Others were not so generous, raving at us for being kids that were not going to buy anything, and demanding to know why we were in their shops stirring up trouble. Such harsh words were common here.

If the people uttering those words knew that they were speaking to the First Imperial Princess, they would probably want to bite their tongues and die.

If we had known that it was going to be like this, we would have come in decent clothes, or at least in a Temple uniform. At least that way, they might at least think that we had money.

Charlotte let out tired sighs as she was consistently met with rejection.

“... I knew it wouldn’t be easy, but it seems like everyone is refusing to deal with us.”

“... Um, shouldn’t you be angry, being spoken to like this by commoners?”

All manner of things had been directed at Charlotte, whether she was chased away or given attention, but she never showed any signs of anger.

In response, Charlotte merely offered a weak laugh.

“I think it would be funny for me to start making a scene just because I got spoken to harshly. If I go about saying ‘How dare you not recognize who I am?’ after concealing my identity and wearing this robe, that would be ridiculous.”

It seemed Charlotte had fully expected this to happen, and that getting angry at them after concealing her identity was rather silly. What mattered to her at that moment was not her dignity or honor.

The fact that Charlotte was taking action herself made it clear how desperate she was to find Baalier.

“Are you sure you don’t sense anything? Anything?”

“... No, not really.”

“I figured...”

Charlotte didn’t seem too disappointed, as if she hadn’t expected much in the first place.

“Let’s go.”

Charlotte appeared to be far from giving up.


The scroll shops were the only places where we could gather any sort of information. Luckily, not everyone blatantly rejected us.

“Why are so many people looking for that little brat? Did he end up causing some big trouble with that fake scroll or something?” A shop owner said.

The scroll shop owners who remembered me generally showed this sort of reaction. According to them, many people were running around in search of Baalier after he had tried to sell them a fake scroll.

They seemed to think that Baalier was involved in a huge crime.

“First, some people who looked like the city guard came asking around and looking for him, and now, even kids like you guys are looking for him. Geez.”

The shop owner found it strange that all manner of people were searching for one kid.

“It’s difficult to go into the details, but it’s an important matter. Could you tell us everything you remember about that child?”

“I don’t have much to say, really. Some months ago, a young kid with a scroll book tried to sell a scroll here. But even though it was well-drawn, the scrolls were fake through and through. I figured he was just selling fake scrolls, so I chased him off. That’s the end of it.”

“I see... Thank you.”

The shopkeeper clicked his tongue. “That little one must have certainly gotten into some big trouble. That’s why you should always be honest in life. Remember that, you two.”

Charlotte and I left the shop quietly after that surprise lecture by the shop owner.

Charlotte sighed. “In the end, we didn’t find anything new to add to what we already know.”

It must have been frustrating for Charlotte to hear the same story with her own ears, merely offering confirmation that they did not have any new information to give her.

“What’s all this about him selling fake scrolls?”

Of course, in the current situation, I had to act as though I didn’t know why Charlotte had come to this place, or what Baalier had done. Charlotte, peeking at me from within her robes, opened her mouth slightly.

“Did I tell you that he escaped the Demon King’s Castle with me?”

“Yeah, you told me that he saved your life....”

“I can’t go into the details, but he had his reasons to get away from me.”

Baalier had to flee because of the possibility of retribution from Vertus. Charlotte thought she knew the reason why I’d left her. Of course, she was completely unaware that I had fled because I was a demon.

“What could a boy with no memories do? Having fled blindly, his path forward must have been completely dark. But then, he had magic scrolls from the Demon King’s Castle, and it seems he tried to sell them here in the Aligar shopping district to get some money.”

Charlotte was piecing together the truth, using the facts that had come to light. A boy had been selling fake scrolls. From there, she must have deduced that those ‘fake’ scrolls were actually demon scrolls, and concluded that the boy was indeed Baalier.

“The structure of demon scrolls are different from our own scrolls. To the merchants who aren’t mages, it would have just seemed like a joke, or an attempt to swindle them.”

“Oh... really?”

The scrolls of demons and humans had different structures. That was why, in my ignorance, I failed to sell the demon scrolls, until I finally encountered Eleris.

“And so, when he eventually realized there was a problem and that he couldn’t sell the demon scrolls, he stole a Fireball scroll from one of the stores, or so I’ve heard. But it’s strange. There are eyewitness accounts of him stealing the Fireball scroll, but no one said that they’d bought such a scroll.”

Eleris had provided false testimony to cover up that part. Hence, the trail ended there.

“Maybe he got scared after stealing it and fled far away?”

Charlotte nodded thoughtfully at my intentionally-misleading statement.

“It’s possible. If that’s the case, we’ll need to search other shopping districts instead of this one.”

“Let’s first go to the shop that reported the stolen Fireball scroll.”

To be precise, I technically hadn’t stolen it since the store owner had given it to me directly, but I obviously couldn’t correct that.

Charlotte led the way while I followed. She seemed to want to confirm what she already knew on her own, perhaps thinking she might discover something new in the process.


We arrived at the shop of the man blinded by greed, where a Fireball scroll had been “stolen”.


I never imagined that I would be back here.

“... What’s this? What are you kids doing here?”

The male owner, whose name Eleris had told me but I had forgotten, still looked sour and greedy. Charlotte walked confidently towards the counter.

“You’re Mr. Borton, right?”

His expression stiffened. Clearly, he was taken aback by someone calling his name out of the blue. Charlotte seemed to possess almost all the preliminary information.

“... Yes. And?”

“Some time ago, you reported that a Fireball scroll was stolen by a certain individual. Is that correct?”

“... Ugh. That story again? Haven’t I said all there is to say? Are they sending kids to check on me now?”

He seemed tired of repeating the same story, frustrated by the persistent inquiries.

“I’m sorry. But it’s an important issue, so we’re still looking into it. Could you tell us once more what happened that day?”

Charlotte asked nicely, rather than asserting any authority.

“They told me that if that brat gets caught, they’d generously reward me with not only the stolen scroll but a hefty sum of money as well. But seeing that there’s been no word up to now, I suppose it’s probably hopeless. Let me ask you instead—what kind of trouble did that kid get into in the end?”

Merchants who had seen me were almost convinced that the boy in question was also involved in a different incident, since so many people were digging about, trying to find him.

“I’m sorry but I can’t tell you that information. It’s an important matter.”

Borton sneered as if he found the situation absurd. “So they told you two what he was up to, but not me? Ah, whatever. If that kid gets caught, that’s all that matters to me.”

He seemed to be boiling with resentment about the stolen Fireball scroll, as if holding some kind of grudge. Watching the man fuming at me for his own wrongdoings was almost enough to cause my blood pressure to rise again.

Normally, I would have lashed out in anger, but knowing that I couldn’t afford to act out in my current circumstance, I gritted my teeth and held back. Borton’s face twisted as he recalled the situation, and began to offer his version of it again.

“So, about two months ago, some kid came in with a scroll book and tried to sell me a scroll from it. But what do you know, it was a fake, drawn very elaborately. I told him to shove off, that I didn’t want to buy his fake stuff.

“After I drove him away, I realized that the brat had sneakily pinched a Fireball scroll from my shop. I couldn’t have been more furious when I found out... I tried to look for the punk, but it was no use. That’s the end of it.

“And now, for some reason, people are looking around everywhere trying to catch him because he’s caused some other trouble or whatnot.”

He twisted his testimony in his favor, and the part about him voluntarily handing me the Fireball scroll had been changed into a story of theft instead.

“Anyway, does this even serve as a clue? We don’t know whether he vanished into thin air or burrowed into the ground. I don’t even know the brat’s name.”

Borton sighed heavily, apparently believing that catching the boy with this level of testimony alone was hopeless. It seemed he was still losing sleep over the scroll he had lost. Charlotte smiled beneath her robe as she observed the shopkeeper.

“It’s definitely a clue.”

“It is?”

“Of course.”

Charlotte wasn’t really looking at Borton, but scanning the shop itself.

“We already got one clue, didn’t we?”

Charlotte had already noticed a fact that she did not originally know of from the reports that were given to her.

“What? What clue?”

Borton’s face was filled with surprise at Charlotte’s sudden mention of a clue.

Charlotte, disregarding Borton’s reaction, suddenly took out a scroll from her belongings.

“I’ll sell you this scroll for a quarter of its market price.”


“It’s not a fake. You can check it.”

Borton, taken aback by a young girl presenting him with a magic scroll out of nowhere, unrolled it on the counter, and after examining it, tilted his head in confusion.

“... A Lightning scroll... It’s genuine. The full price of a scroll is one gold coin, and a quarter of that would be twenty-five silver coins.”

“You can buy it if you want to, or not. It’s up to you.”

Charlotte offered the scroll to him nonchalantly, as if to avoid haggling over whether one gold was the correct market price or not. Borton, sensing the opportunity, handed her twenty-five silver coins immediately.

I could tell from his face that the issue of clues and testimonies didn’t matter to him, now that he had earned some easy money.

After taking the silver coins, Charlotte smiled.

“Now, at which point in this process did I have the opportunity to steal one of your scrolls?”

“... What?” freewebnove(l)

“There doesn’t seem to be an appraisal room in the back of the store, and you were able to verify the authenticity of this scroll just by looking it over at the counter. You instantly determined that the scroll the young kid brought in was a fake and chased him away. So how could that child have possibly stolen a Fireball scroll from the scroll cabinet behind you?”

Charlotte pointed to the scroll cabinet behind Borton. It was set up in such a way that customers couldn’t possibly access it.

Charlotte’s deduction pierced through the web of lies, highlighting the inconsistency in Borton’s story. His claim that the boy had stolen a scroll became questionable since, according to his own process of authentication, the child wouldn’t have had the chance to get anywhere near the scrolls that were kept securely behind the counter.

If Baalier had shown Borton a demon scroll and Borton had taken it to the back of the shop to appraise it, then it might have been possible for the Fireball scroll to be stealthily stolen.

However, Charlotte had intentionally prevented the shopkeeper from concocting such a story by selling a scroll at a significantly lower price, thereby getting to observe the transaction process firsthand. Her aim had been to directly assess how the shop was run, to determine if thievery was even plausible.

With a slight tilt of her head and a mocking tone, Charlotte spoke.

“It’s clear that the child did not steal the Fireball scroll—or perhaps, you are hiding something. Why don’t you tell us what that is?”

Charlotte had seen through Borton’s lies, cornering him and leaving no room for excuses.

“W-what, what are you saying?! If I said it was stolen, then it was stolen! Why you little—”

His disbelief was evident, and his face reddened as he attempted to step out from behind the counter.

“Hey, watch your words, old man.”


Instead of Charlotte, still clad in her robe, I stepped forward. Charlotte’s decision not to reveal her identity suggested that she did not want to press the matter any further using her position.

“I’m a student of the Temple’s Royal Class. If you don’t want to end up a bloody mess for spewing nonsense, you’d better just talk.”

Since Charlotte didn’t want to reveal her identity, I did.

‘You should be thankful, shopkeeper. If I hadn’t intervened and you ended up laying a hand on her, who knows if your head would still be attached to your shoulders.’

“The Te-Temple...?”

I waved my student ID in front of him, and unlike the thugs on the train, this man seemed slightly intimidated.

“Yeah, the Temple. I don’t really have anything to lose if I beat you up, but that’s not true if we look at things from your side. Besides, I’m confident I can take you in a fight easily. What do you say? If you think you can overpower me given your weight class, then come at me.”

I said all that menacingly, in a low voice, and he seemed stuck between the humiliation of being disrespected by a youngster and the worry of getting into trouble with a Temple student. Charlotte seemed slightly surprised that I’d intervened, as she hadn’t anticipated it.

Charlotte had already seen through Borton’s lies, so it was only a matter of time before she uncovered the truth. And if that was the case, I decided that I might as well contribute and show Charlotte that I could be useful.

“It’s simple. If you were robbed, just explain how the theft happened. And if that’s not the case, then tell us what you’re hiding.”

My demeanor was more intimidating than that of Charlotte, who was still concealed in her robe. She remained silent, waiting to see how I would handle the situation.

Above all, I couldn’t stand idly by while this asshole spouted nonsense.

“You understand that this is a serious matter, right? You’re suspected of providing false information and disrupting the course of the investigation. Do you want to talk now, or would you prefer to be dragged away by someone you don’t even know into some dark basement, and get the crap beaten out of you before you open your mouth?”

I didn’t know what kind of expression Charlotte made in response to my improbable threat.

It wasn’t as if I could control either Charlotte’s or Vertus’ forces and get them to do something like that. But I still wanted to manufacture a terrifying threat.

False information. Disruption of an investigation. Suspicions.

Laying out words that suggested involvement in something serious was usually enough to make people start to worry.

My words were merely a bluff. I didn’t have the authority to carry out such threats.

“U-uh... s-so... so...”

However, from Borton’s perspective, it would be difficult to dismiss my words as a mere bluff.

I’d never intended to come back here.

Yet now, when faced with this situation, I found myself wanting to see this scumbag get what he deserved.

TLN: Charlotte, the detective?!

This chapt𝓮r is updat𝒆d by (f)reew𝒆b(n)