Maiden Game Hard Mode – Chapter 87

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Chapter 87 – Destruction of the Earth

The vast majority of the spirits who made contracts with the royal people were in unprecedented turmoil.

It was the kind of commotion that occurs when a giant hornet appears in a beehive, and the spirits rushed out in droves to intercept them, flying around in groups without any countermeasures.

When the contracted humans asked the spirits, who were in unprecedented turmoil, about the situation, they mentioned the possibility of being killed by the Daemons.

In human conflicts, the spirits cannot be harmed, but attacks tinged with the magic power of Daemons can kill spirits. Bombardment of warships powered by Tenka humans who have made a contract with Daemons, or killing the Royal people on a planet that they have conquered more directly, are concrete means of harming spirits.

Of course, if the spirit is killed, the contractor would not survive.

In response to the appearance of Daemons comparable to a spirits and the fact that they have spread to Tenka, which overwhelmed the Monarchy with military power that omitted spirits, a sense of crisis that could not be dispelled covered the hearts of the people as if a dark cloud stood in the Monarchy.

News of the destruction of the Frodi Star System and the appearance of Daemons was also delivered to Hart, who had just conquered the Solar System, via Multidimensional Magic Conversion Communication Waves.

Putting his judgment on hold, Hart set aside time to think and consulted with his spirit Mira.

“Mira, tell me about the Daemons, I don’t know.”

Hart uses the Maiden Game “The Galactic Prince” as his source of information, but he only knows about the Daemons from the setting that could be found after completing the game.

The only information on this was that the Dukes of Takrham’s artifact, which takes away magical powers, was derived from Daemons, and there was no actual appearance of Daemons.

“Daemons are beings that branched off from Spirits. They may be similar to angels and fallen angels.”

According to Mira’s explanation, which contrasts Spirits and Daemons, if spirits have positive energy, then beings with negative energy were considered Daemons.

Even if spirits fight each other, they will not perish because they will only be bathed in positive energy. However, if a spirit and a Daemon shower each other with energy, the losing party would be reduced to zero energy and absorbed by the other party.

And it was said that spirits and Daemons were in a predator-prey relationship with each other.

“So they are natural enemies?”

“I suppose you could interpret them as a natural enemy. When Mira and the others are eaten by a Daemon, the Daemon is strengthened based on that. If the balance of power is upset, the situation will deteriorate at an accelerated pace. The Daemons, from Mira’s point of view, are like zombies from a zombie movie.”

These were Mira’s subjective views, but Hart generally understood the perception of the Daemon from the spirit side.

“And can Daemons be promoted and create realms like spirits?”

“They can. The most important thing to remember is that they are just branched from Spirits, so basically they can do the same things.”

Hart, understanding of Tenka’s actions in dropping celestial bodies on the Republic, made sense of the deteriorating situation surrounding the Monarchy.

“The reason why the Tenka side teamed up with the dwarves was because the dwarves had a contract with Daemons.”

Since the Tenka fleet that invaded the Republic had Daemons, Hart thought that there was a class of demons in the other camp that could distribute C-class crystals, just like Janet, the Spirit Emperor of the Diete Star System.

Then, if they can create multiple high-level Daemons, not advanced spirits, and feed the planets of the Republic to them, a Daemon King could be created.

Hart understood Tenka’s action of dropping a celestial body in the Republic. In short, what the alliance between Tenka and Hercules did was to imitate Hart.

“When the opponent does the same thing you did, you realize the awkwardness of your actions.”

Hart was convinced that the purpose of Tenka dropping the celestial body on the Head planet of the Republic was to absorb the miasma accumulated in the Head planet and create a Daemon King. And the reason why they did not attack the Monarchy’s star system was because there was a possibility that the Tenka side could not break through the Monarchy’s defensive forces.

The Republic of Frodi has three star systems. Tenka also has three star systems.

If three Demon Kings are born, Ten-to, Ōizumi, and Honyō will be converted into realms, their strength will be multiplied by five, and reinforcements will be able to be sent from each star system using the Transition Gate.

Ordinary Tenka people without magical powers, and an unimaginably large number of dwarves living underground on the giant planet Alcaeus, will eventually emerge to intercept them with Tenka fighter crafts.

“It’s the worst case scenario…”

Hart thought that the birth of the three Daemon Kings was inevitable.

One star system has already been destroyed in the Republic, and even if Hart sent them a rescue from the Solar System, they could not make it in time for the remaining two star systems.

And Tenka, who has obtained the three Daemon Kings, will turn each star system of Tenka into realms.

“…… At this point, no star system of Tenka has been turned into a realm by the Daemon King yet.”

Suddenly, Hart had a flash of inspiration for a way out of the current situation.

Tenka is in the process of invading the Republic, and there is no leeway for the defensive forces at this time. If Hart directs all his forces forward, they can destroy the planets of Tenka. That way, Hart will be able to gain the Spirit King and increase the realms in the Monarchy’s star system.

After thinking further, Hart came up with an even worse plan.

Hart is in the solar system, and in front of him is a planet called Earth.

As a human being who originated on Earth, it may be an act that touches the taboo, but if Earth is fed to the spirits, they can increase the number of Spirit Kings by one more….

If Tenka and Hercules hadn’t brought out the Daemons, he would never have considered it. And even if he thought about it, if it weren’t for the fact that Tenka dropped celestial bodies and even turned it into a fusion round minefield, he would have hesitated in light of the value of the planet Earth.

But the Daemons have put the Monarchy at risk of defeat in the worst case. Hart, the Commander-in-Chief, must adopt the best possible measures to avert national crisis.

Furthermore, if Hart passes Earth up, the alliance between Tenka and Hercules may use Earth to create a new Daemon King.

Was the reason why the alliance between Tenka and Hercules did not use Earth because they intended to settle there? Or maybe it was because they attacked the Earth before attacking the three star systems of the Republic, so as to avoid the risk of the Monarchy moving to stop them in the stage of a single Daemon King?

The fact that a fourth Daemon King could be created if the Earth were left unattended made Hart decide to destroy Earth.

“For humanity as a whole, Earth is worth more than Diete and Fukashiro, but…”

Even though he came to the conclusion that he had no choice but to destroy it, Hart agonized over it.

To the Monarchy of Diete, Earthers are a headache, but the Earth itself is home to a wide variety of organisms, which are of extremely high value to humanity.

To give a specific example, placenta formation in mammals is influenced by viral infection, and by comparing it with marsupials without the placenta in Australia, the process and possibility of human evolution can be explored…… which could only be confirmed on Earth.

Earth, which is home to a variety of organisms that harm or affect the human body, is a testing ground and a textbook of biology in which humans have evolved, acquired immunity, and adapted to their environment.

If Hart drops a large number of celestial bodies to roll up the Earth’s strata in order to create a Spirit King, there will be a mass extinction on Earth far greater than during the Diete War of Independence, and humanity will never be able to read parts of the textbook again.

Nevertheless, Hart made his decision.

“The life of the Royal people outweighs a biology textbook.”

When mankind lived only on Earth, even with environmental pollution and destruction of the ozone layer, no country ever thought “Let’s destroy humanity for the sake of Earth”.

For the Monarchy, the Royal people have irreplaceable value and are incomparable to Earth.

Having come to a conclusion, Hart immediately ordered the eight fleets and the aristocratic forces to prepare for withdrawal, and also ordered the fleet to gather celestial bodies for entry.

He made a request to Yuna back home, and the next day she held an emergency liaison meeting between the home country and the invading army, bringing together high ranking military officers and senior aristocrats.

“I, Fleet Admiral Amakawa, the Commander-in-Chief of the Invasion Forces, will present two strategies that we are going to carry out, which we consider essential for the survival of the Monarchy.”

The Queen ordered the attendance of all eligible participants in the Royal Court and the Lords’ Conference.

That is, military personnel above the rank of General, Ministers of the government and two Chairmen of Parliament, Aristocratic heads above Count and their successors, all of whom were ordered to attend the meeting.

The reason for this was that the materials that Hart had distributed in advance prior to the meeting made them decide that they should attend no matter what.

The handouts described the true purpose of the alliance attacking the Republic, the possibility that each star system of Tenka could be turned into realm by a Daemon King, the fact that it was time to invade now that the enemy fleet was absent, and that the plan was to purify the miasma of Earth and increase the number of Spirit Kings on the Monarchy side.

As the attendees digested the summary, Hart informed them of his final confirmation.

“One of the strategies is to destroy Earth right now and sacrifice it to create a new Spirit King, which is essential both to increase the realm that protects the Monarchy’s star system and to prevent Tenka and the Dwarves from creating a new Daemon King.”

Hart explained the first operation, followed by the second.

“The other strategy is to counter invade the Tenka Star Systems before the Frodi invasion army returns, because while it is less difficult to capture now, after Tenka creates the realm of the Daemon King, it will be impossible to capture the star system.”

The second operation was to return the eight fleets led by Hart and the fifteen aristocratic fleets from the Solar System Invasion Army back to the Diete System, jump from the Diete System to the MacLir System via the Transition Gate, and then charge from the MacLir system to the Ōizumi System.

The defense force of the 3 Tenka star systems, as known to Kyūyama, is equivalent to 133,000 ships. If the natural increase in the number of National Mages is combined, it would be equivalent to 145,000 ships.

In addition, the major increase in defense forces using Daemon crystals should not have been carried out yet.

It takes a considerable amount of time to build a large number of fighter crafts based on the premise of using Daemon crystals and deploy them with a full complement of pilots. Tenka, who did not have Daemon crystals at the time of the capture of Fukashiro and did not know about Liú Hào of Kyūyama, has not been able to increase its defensive force at this time.

“There will not be enough time to assemble the pilots of the fighter crafts with the Daemon crystals. Therefore, referring to when the Monarchy obtained the spirit crystals, if Tenka was able to increase the fleet strength by 20%, the enemy’s defense force is estimated to be equivalent to 174,000 ships.”

In contrast, Fortress Kerviel is considered to be a force equivalent to 150,000 Tenka ships with 1,125,000 Israfel. By adding the regular army and aristocratic fleets to them, they will have a force equivalent to 170,000 ships.

If the Monarchy 170,000 ships and the 174,000 Tenka ships fought, Tenka will have the advantage.

However, while 170,000 ships faced 174,000 ships at Ōizumi, Hart considered returning only Fortress Kerviel to the MacLir System, and then again cramming 1,125,000 Israfel into it and returning to Ōizumi.

The fighter craft pilots onboard Fortress Kerviel are elite fighters who are rated to produce twice the performance of the original craft.

The second wave of additional re-selections will naturally be less skilled pilots. The army calculates that the valuation will fall by a factor of 1.2, but the strength equivalent of 150,000 ships will only fall to the equivalent of 90,000 ships, and if that many reinforcements reach Ōizumi, the enemy will be overwhelmed.

If the second wave arrives, it will be a battle of 260,000 ships versus 174,000 ships.

The Tenka side may also send reinforcements from Ten-to or Honyō, but if the enemy reinforcements are insufficient, they can capture Ōizumi and increase the number of Spirit Kings.

If the enemy reinforcements are too many, they will make Ōizumi a realm with the Spirit King promoted on Earth, annihilate Ōizumi’s defense fleet and reinforcement fleet from other star systems, get reinforcements from the Diete Star System via the transition gate, and invade the weakened Ten-to and Honyō.

“Even if Tenka and Hercules join forces to add the Hercules Star System to the enemy camp, we can capture some of Tenka’s star system and increase the realms in the Monarchy’s star system. The more we cut down Tenka, the more advantageous we will be in future battles.”

After Hart finished his explanation, questions were posed by one of the attendees. The questioner who shot Hart through with his keen eye was Duke Dauphin, the main ruler of the Podalley star system.

[If this is realized, what will happen to the Podalley and Machaon Star Systems that cannot create a realm? There must be Daemons on the enemy side?]

Having read a lot further ahead, Hart was impressed by the Dauphin.

Tenka has the realm of the Daemon King, and can protect the entire star system. Against each star system of Tenka, which has become able to deploy as many fighter crafts as possible due to the Daemon Crystals, the Monarchy can only bring enough strength to be carried on Fortress Kerviel to attack from now on.

Then the interstellar war, in which the forces are balanced, will be prolonged by hundreds of years of fighting like between the Monarchy and the Coalition of Humanity, but the Monarchy, which lacks Spirit Kings, would leave a hole in the defense because an entire star system cannot be turned into realm.

In the star system that has expanded the realm of the Spirit King, the battle difference between friend and foe can be widened by 5 times, and reinforcements can be obtained from each star system connected by the Transition Gate. On the other hand, Podalley and Machaon, which cannot create a realm, have no such benefits.

Hart presented a response that was common sense, but far from perfect.

“We don’t have enough Spirit Kings for the eight star systems in the Monarchy. For systems that cannot be territorialized, the defense force of the systems that have become realms will be diverted to increase the force.”

This was a stopgap measure, not a fundamental solution.

Dauphin assumed the worst.

[Daemons and Spirits can do the same thing, so what happens if Tenka and the dwarves mass-produce interstellar ships the size of Israfel and invade Podalley and Machaon on a scale of 100 million ships? Can we defend ourselves?]

Hart could not assure that such a thing could not happen.

If Tenka, determined to fight for the survival of the nation, build and send in a large number of interstellar ships equivalent to Israfel, there is a possibility that both star systems will not be able to be protected.

Hundreds of millions of Israfel boats and C-class crystals that can operate them would be able to compete in terms of military strength, but in a tumultuous battle where hundreds of millions of fighter crafts fight each other, it is not always possible to protect the planet. There will be a breakdown sooner or later.

In addition, there is a limit to the energy needed to produce spirit crystals.

In the Diete System, billions of people were killed in two battles, and the Spirit Emperor Janet, who purified and absorbed the miasma, has a reasonable amount of energy, but it cannot be supplied indefinitely.

Hart replied with a stern expression.

“We will deploy as much force as possible to prepare for the invasion of Tenka, and other countermeasures will be taken in due course.”

[In exchange for the immense authority to control the entire army of the Monarchy at will, the Lord has a duty to protect the Monarchy and the Royal people to the fullest extent.]

Hart, the Commander-in-Chief and the only Fleet Admiral in the Monarchy, nodded silently.

[If you want to destroy Earth and increase the number of Spirit Kings in order to protect the Monarchy, I agree with you, so go ahead and do it. And we will also do the best to defend the star systems that cannot be turned into realms. Please always keep us updated on the progress of defense measures.]

“Very well. We will keep the Lords whose systems cannot be converted into realms informed of the progress of our defense measures.”

As Dauphin sat down, silence reigned over the meeting.

Some of those in attendance may have opinions other than those in favor of a celestial raid on Earth.

They didn’t raise their voices because Dauphin’s questioning made them understand that the presence or absence of a single Spirit King could even lead to the destruction of the Monarchy’s star system.

Podalley and Machaon are the rearmost star systems, but there is no guarantee of safety against an enemy that can attack even the distant Republic.

As the Hercules leader, Ishidor, declared in the Frodi region, their own survival and prosperity as living things takes precedence over everything else.

“Then we will destroy Earth and create a new Spirit King, and then invade the enemy star system.”

After the decision was made known, the contents of the external announcement were explained.

The premise was that Earth had become a minefield with a large number of fusion munitions buried after half of the Earth’s population were transferred to Mars by Tenka. In addition, Tenka’s android soldiers, who detonate fusion rounds, are also mixed in.

Therefore, the main purpose of the Monarchy’s celestial raid into Earth was to “destroy fusion rounds by celestial entry, clear the minefields, and return Earth to a safe environment in the long run”.

The announcement was made after the first celestial body was plunged into Earth.

If it is announced before this is executed, it is easy to foresee that Earthers, who received the declaration of the destruction of their homeland and Tenka who wanted to buy more time, will make a fuss and interfere with the operation.

On Earth, there are still Earthers who are opposed to the Monarchy. It would take hundreds of years for the Monarchy to completely immigrate those who resist and hide. And the Monarchy, intending to invade Ōizumi, had no time to urge them to change their minds.

The Monarchy has abandoned all Earthers who refuse to comply with the order to move to Mars.

The destruction of Earth was carried out in the form of a full-scale bombardment of celestial bodies infused with the magical power of the Senior Spirit Alfrida so that the maximum amount of miasma could be purified.

Earth’s strata blew up to the outer atmosphere, the seabed was penetrated, and the oceans boiled over.

The thought of this being a familiar sight and the fact that he had destroyed Earth swirled inside Hart.

Hart let out a heavy sigh and turned his attention to Alfrida.

The miasma that had accumulated on Earth over billions of years was purified by Alfrida’s magic, turned into energy, and absorbed by her.

Earth has a history of billions of years, and there must have been a considerable amount of miasma that could not be purified. As the collected energy was absorbed, plants grew lushly in the garden around the manifested Alfrida, light flooded from the silver dew she held, her flaxen hair and pink dress glowed divinely, and her crimson earrings darkened.

Turning to Alfrida, who had a blue pendant hanging around her neck before she knew it, Mira mouthed her assessment in an admiring manner.

『If you work hard, you may be able to reach the Spirit Emperor here.』

Against the backdrop of a thoroughly burned Earth, Alfrida smiled softly.

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