CGM – Vol 2 Prologue


I, Wilhelm Wondersky, am a shut-in.

I named my bedroom “Paradise” and lived a lazy life within it.

Not too long ago, I was vigorously completing quests for a guild on the verge of collapse. In the end, I managed to earn a lot of money and even saved the city by driving away an ancient magical beast that nobody else could defeat.

Back then, I was on a roll.

But now…

Ouch. Ouch, ouch, ouch. My past self was so full of energy. Just remembering it makes me cringe and uncomfortable.

Now my spirits are super low and I’m back to being a shut-in.

Huh? How did it come to this?

Well, you see, it’s because suspicions about me being the “Demon King” resurfaced.

There was a feature article in the newspaper titled “Is Wilhelm Wondersky Really the Demon King?” It talked about how the Demon King was a bad guy who wreaked havoc in ancient times.

The trigger for this article was when I drove away the ancient beast. As it turns out, in the past, the Demon King also drove away ancient beasts like I did.

It’s such a nuisance of an article. Because of that article, the way people treat me changed.

Whispers start when I walk down the street.

Kids point fingers and make fun of me. They suddenly kick me as if they’re heroes. Everyone looks at me with amusement and laughs.

As a result, my pure fragile heart was hurt and shattered into pieces. It’s beyond repair now.

Since it seemed like staying in the guild would lead to more rumors, I decided to shut myself in at my parents’ house.

Hehehe, now that I’m a shut-in, I won’t let anyone disturb this lifestyle.

As usual, I’ve put a strong magical lock on the door. Only the servants I allow are permitted to enter my room.

Furthermore, the only heirloom sword capable of breaking my sealing magic is in my possession. So there’s no way that noisy father of mine can find a single means to enter this room.

In other words, I can continue to be a shut-in in this room indefinitely.

“Ah, this is amazing. The life of a shut-in is wonderful!” (Wilhelm)

Ahahaha. Ahahahaha. I can’t stop laughing. I absolutely won’t leave this paradise anymore.

I poured some cold, thin tea down my throat.

Hmm, the taste of high-quality tea… I can’t taste it at all. It’s almost transparent in color. I’m sure I asked the butler for warm and delicious tea. Hmm…

I try pouring the tea down my throat again.

“No, this is just water, isn’t it? There’s absolutely no scent of tea leaves at all!” (Wilhelm)

I’ve been had. I thought they brought me some tea.

It’s probably just my father’s way of annoying me.

How pointless. With such trivial pranks, I will never yield.

I’m going to spend my life here, in this bed, no, in this paradise!

I woke up around noon.

“Huh, that’s unusual. It’s sunny today.” (Wilhelm)

It’s been a month and a half since I started being a shut-in. The season has already transitioned from spring to the rainy season.

It’s been raining constantly. It feels refreshing to see the sun again after so long.

Well, whether it’s rainy or sunny doesn’t matter for a shut-in like me. After all, I don’t go outside.

“It’s such nice weather. Maybe I’ll go back to sleep for a bit.” (Wilhelm)

Let’s do that. That sounds good.

I sink back into the swamp of sleep…

Ah, the blissful shut-in life. It’s fine to sleep as much as I want. There’s no happiness like this anywhere else. Shut-ins have a happiness that workers can never experience. I have no intention of ever giving up this shut-in life.

It was the moment when I started to have happy dreams.

“Aaaaaaaaaah!” (Robert)

I felt like I heard my father’s voice coming from the roof or something.

Was that my imagination? Why is my father yelling from the roof? Is he trying to fix a leak while it’s sunny? He should just hire a professional.

“Aaaaaaaaaaaah!” (Robert)

Huh? Is my father’s voice getting closer?

“Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!” (Robert)

What’s going on? I hear my father’s voice from outside the window…

“Dosseeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeei!” (Robert)

Crash! The window glass shattered loudly!

Eeeeeeeeeeh?! My father just kicked in the window and entered the room! Is there something wrong with his head?!

It seems like he set up a rope on the roof and swung down from there. Just to enter my room through the window.

Unbelievable. Is he crazy? Sure, there’s no sealing magic on the window, but this is beyond absurd.

My father showed a creepy grin.

“Heh, hahahaha. Finally… we meet at last. Huh? Um, hmm, wait, what was your name again?” (Robert)

“Hey, I’m Wilhelm. Have you finally lost it?” (Wilhelm)

“Who’s losing it? It’s just been so long since I’ve seen your face, I genuinely forgot.” (Robert)

“That’s what they call losing it.” (Wilhelm)

“Don’t know what you’re talking about. I still remember Tony!” (Robert)

Tony is my brother. He’s a talented and handsome guy.

“Father, please love your sons equally.” (Wilhelm)

“Huh? How dare you say you’re brothers with Tony!” (Robert)

“But we are real brothers.” (Wilhelm)

“Shut it, you filthy shut-in!” (Robert)

“I’m not filthy! I do take baths when you’re asleep!” (Robert)

Haaa.

 I reluctantly got out of bed.

My father approaches me. And he’s holding a halberd1 and aiming it at me.

“So, Father, what brings you here today?” (Wilhelm)

“Well, you see, the other day, I was finally told by my colleagues at work.” (Robert)

My father clenched his fists so tightly that his eyes squinted with frustration.

“What did they say?” (Wilhelm)

“They said… isn’t your eldest son a shut-in? Pfff… Pffffft—and then they laughed at me. They said Pfff twice. That annoyed the hell out of me!” (Robert)

“Um, would it be better with just one ‘pfff’?” (Wilhelm)

There was a sharp snap sound as something in my father snapped.

“Alright, that’s a good comeback. Let that be your last words. Die right here, right now!” (Robert)

“Aaaargh! I’m the esteemed eldest son of the Wondersky family! If I die, Father, you’ll have all sorts of problems!” (Wilhelm)

The halberd swung down. I narrowly avoided it.

My bed had been damaged.

“Aaaaaahhhhhh! My paradise!” (Wilhelm)

“Hahaha, serves you right!” (Robert)

“Don’t take pleasure in your son’s misfortune!” (Wilhelm)

“Haha, that’s unfortunate! I feel so alive right now. I can finally get rid of my sleep deprivation!” (Robert)

“You were sleep-deprived?!” (Wilhelm)

“I’ve been agonizing over how to kick you out of the house!” (Robert)

“Then don’t do it!” (Wilhelm)

“No hard feelings but… it must be doneee!!” (Robert)

Ah, I’ll have to tell the butler to fix the bed later.

And seriously, my father won’t stop attacking with the halberd.

*Dodge, dodge, dodge*

Oh, it’s hard to move when I’ve just woken up. I might get hit the moment I let my guard down. Scary!

“Father, father, I’m still half asleep and feeling sluggish. I might not be able to dodge it. If I get hit, I’ll die!” (Wilhelm)

“Isn’t that good? If you get hit, we can some money on food expenses!” (Robert)

“Don’t be happy about that! You never even prepared decent meals!” (Wilhelm)

Almost-rotten bread, half-eaten vegetables, and slightly burnt soup.

The quality of meals deteriorated day by day. He must have been trying to make me fed up with my shut-in life. What a conniving father.

“Don’t you think you should be grateful that you even get food to eat? You’re an adult Neet, for crying out loud!” (Robert)

He swung the halberd vigorously.

I jumped up and fled to the wall.

My father chased after me and thrust the halberd into the wall just as I narrowly escaped.

A wall slam with a halberd. But since it’s my father, and his eyes are bloodshot, it’s not exactly heartwarming.

“So, in order to save on food expenses, just die. With that saved money, I’ll drink some good wine!” (Robert)

What a parent.

“P-Please give me a chance. It’s not like you to lack compassion, Father.” (Wilhelm)

“A chance? Are you still blabbering about wanting to live? Despite being a shut-in?” (Robert)

“Of course, I want to live. If I die here, I’ll come back as a ghost and haunt you.” (Wilhelm)

“I’d laugh if you came back as a ghost. I’ll douse you in salt and purify you.” (Robert)

Hahahaha—My father laughed.

“…But well, that’s right. I am the most compassionate man in town.” (Robert)

All lies.

“So, I’ll give you one chance. Then—” (Robert)

My father smiled broadly, his face relaxed as if relieved of stress.

When I changed and stepped outside, it started to rain.

“Wil-sama, it might be wise to take an umbrella.” (Richard)

Richard, the tall, white-haired butler, handed me a large umbrella. I thanked him.

“Hohoho, looks like the weather isn’t so welcoming of Wil-sama’s fresh start, isn’t it?” (Richard)

“Maybe my mood influenced the weather.” (Wilhelm)

It was a gloomy and dark cloud. It felt like something unpleasant was about to happen.

“Wil-sama, the rainy season has fully set in. Please be careful not to be taken away by ghosts at night. Please take care.” (Richard)

So, ghosts come out during the rainy season.

A flash of lightning illuminated Richard’s face, making it look eerie. It seemed like an omen that something scary was about to happen. Thunder rumbled ominously.

“Richard used to scare me like this when I was a kid.” (Wilhelm)

“Hohoho, compared to other children, Wil-sama wasn’t scared at all though.” (Richard)

So that’s why Richard used to try so hard to scare me. He would do things like chase me with a sheet over his head. Those were some good memories from my childhood.

“Well then, I’m off. Thanks for seeing me off.” (Wilhelm)

“Yes. I pray for a bright and glorious future ahead for Wil-sama’s journey.” (Richard)

I walked slowly through the heavy rain, listening to the sound of raindrops hitting the umbrella.

The air outside feels nostalgic. Even the sensation of walking down the street feels nostalgic. It’s been a long time since my shoes got wet in the rain.

I walked down the quiet residential street. There don’t seem to be a lot of people hanging around at this time of the day.

Wait… A girl is getting wet in the rain.

She’s wearing a dark navy dress and it’s oddly tattered. There are stitches on the dress that were used to cover the large tears.

The girl has long jet-black hair covering her eyes. She looks like a ghost or a spirit. Why is she standing there absent-mindedly getting wet in the rain?

…Ah, I see. She’s been watching a black cat. The cat seems to have spotted a frog and is about to pounce.

The girl’s hair and clothes are getting wetter and wetter. It wouldn’t be gentlemanly to just pass by like this.

“Here, please use this umbrella.” (Wilhelm)

I hand the umbrella to the girl, hidden behind her long sleeves.

“Um, I’m fine, you know?” (Girl)

Her voice, which was gently echoing in my ears, was beautiful. She’s probably three or four years younger than me.

“It’s okay. Just take it. You don’t have to worry too much about me.” (Wilhelm)

The girl nodded while the black cat meowed, thanking me.

I continued down the road without looking back.

Let’s leave with style. It feels good to do nice things, once in a while. I had a strong feeling that something good was going to happen from now on.

Ah, there’s a hood attached to my jacket. If I pull it over, at least, I won’t get too wet in the rain.

“Onii-san.” (Girl)

The girl’s voice slipped through the gaps in the sound of the rain and reached my ears.

I stopped and turned around. Lightning flashed nearby.

The girl was looking at me with vacant eyes. Her mouth curved into a smile, giving off an eerie vibe.

“I think something very bad will happen near onii-san in the not-so-distant future. So be careful, okay? Kekeke… Kekekekeke…” (Girl)

She covered her mouth with the hand hidden in her sleeve and laughed creepily.

She has quite an unusual way of laughing.

“Something bad?” (Wilhelm)

“Yes, something bad. Something very, very bad…” (Girl)

The lightning cast an eerie light on the girl’s face. It felt like a scene from a horror movie. Her laughter echoed in my ears, adding to the ominous atmosphere.

The black cat, perhaps bored of the frog, approached me.

It stared at me for a moment, then smirked. And then it walked across my path.

The black cat crossing my path… That’s ominous.

The girl and the black cat walked away.

That girl left quite an impression. She seemed to have a presence that was, how should I put it, faint, almost like she came from another world…

“Could it be, that girl was a ghost?” (Wilhelm)

That thought sent shivers down my spine. The rainy season is said to be the time when ghosts come from the other world.

I was taught since childhood that if you do bad things, ghosts will take you away. But I don’t think I’m a bad person…

The rain kept getting heavier.

“Something bad will happen in the near future huh?” (Wilhelm)

I pondered while getting soaked in the rain. Maybe I shouldn’t have offered her my umbrella.

I was hoping that something good would come my way.


TL Notes:

Thanks for reading!

Yes, there are more lolis but you probably already see it coming from the cover illustration. Well, she looks like an interesting character. Maybe she’s a witch or something since there’s the black cat. It wasn’t mentioned if the cat was hers, but I’m sure we’ll see it again.


Footnote:

  1. Halberd is a two-handed polearm with an axe blade at the end. Just imagine a spear but with an axe head.
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