Chapter 4:

Friend or Foe

Tears of Wars: The Heroes are Born

One month had passed. They became very close, although Kenue still seemed unable to completely forget that night. They trained together day and night. Other villagers also trained to get stronger. The two villages thought of ways to fight the monsters. They were wondering that moving from place to place was really their destiny.Bookmark here

Roman and the others went into the forest and they found a cave. They decided to check it out. Then, something unexpected happened. A gorilla monster appeared.Bookmark here

“Is this the monkey, Kenue? He’s definitely stronger than Roman,” Darma said, poking fun at Roman.Bookmark here

“What the hell?! You’re being annoying, just like your brother,” Roman snapped in annoyance.Bookmark here

“Sorry, I’m just kidding. Looks like he’s not our enemy.”Bookmark here

“Hey puny humans, what do you guys want? Why did you enter my territory? Do you have a death wish or something?” Kong, the gorilla monster, asked.Bookmark here

“Wait, we were just wandering around, looking for a safe place we could live in,” Terry said.Bookmark here

“A safe place? Do you think such a place exists? This world is teeming with greedy humans and stupid monsters. No place is safe anymore.”Bookmark here

“Stupid monsters? Do you hate monsters? Aren’t you a monster, too?” Roman gave a sarcastic remark.Bookmark here

“Silence, you puny human. Don’t you dare compare me to those lowly ones. I’m different.”Bookmark here

“Are you from the Monster Kingdom, too? Do you hate humans?” Darma asked.Bookmark here

“I hailed from the monster planet, but I do what I want. Nobody tells me what to do. Unlike those vermin: Croco, Torto, Wolfie, Sharkin, and Rhino!! They’re lowly slaves!”Bookmark here

“You seem to hate them, huh?” Terry asked, curious.Bookmark here

“You know nothing, shrimp. You don’t know me. Humans are just as stupid and cunning, except him.”Bookmark here

Kong befriended a human named Shinra, a very strong swordsman. Shinra was his training partner.Bookmark here

“Ah, so you have a human girlfriend, huh? I guess even monsters have feelings,” Roman mocked.Bookmark here

Bursting with anger, Kong took a massive boulder and threw it at Roman.Bookmark here

Roman, who was laughing with his back to Kong, did not see a boulder flying toward him.Bookmark here

“Watch out!” Darma warned him.Bookmark here

“Roman, behind you!!” Terry shouted frantically.Bookmark here

Kenue swiftly smashed the boulder with his spear and it split into two pieces. Roman was astonished.Bookmark here

“Hey, what the hell?! You damn monkey!!” Roman snapped.Bookmark here

“How dare you insult my friend? I’ll show you what happens if someone dares insult my friend!!” Kong shouted furiously.Bookmark here

Kong dashed forward and jumped straight at Roman, hitting him with both hands. Roman was able to withstand the blow, but he fell to his knees before Kong.Bookmark here

“Hey, do you seriously want to fight with me? All right, Monkey, I’ll take you on!!”Bookmark here

“Stop it, Roman. You too, Mr. Monkey. Please don’t fight. We didn’t come here to fight,” Darma said, trying to stop their fight.Bookmark here

Kong’s strike sent Roman flying about ten meters away. Terry was still stunned by his attack.Bookmark here

Next, Kong took a large log and threw it at Darma, but he easily dodged it.Bookmark here

Roman got to his feet. “Argh!! You damn monkey!! You’re strong, but I won’t lose!!” he roared, rushing to Kong.Bookmark here

Darma said to Terry and Kenue, “You guys stay away. I gather Roman’s words earlier put him in a mood. You’d better apologize, Roman, before things get any worse!”Bookmark here

“But I refuse. Take this, you stupid monkey!!” Roman hollered, trying to attack Kong.Bookmark here

Roman jumped up, going to attack using his knees like he did against the Croco that time. His knee strike hit Kong’s face and made him bleed from his mouth. Kong was thrown backwards.Bookmark here

A moment later, he jumped again and was going to perform a spinning kick toward Kong, but with one hand Kong managed to catch his leg, hurling him far into the cave wall. Roman was bleeding quite a lot from his mouth. Laying limp, he could not get up again.Bookmark here

Kong charged forward, wanting to slam Roman with his body against the cave wall, but Darma and Terry fired their arrows past his face and made two cuts on it. Fortunately, they managed to stop Kong.Bookmark here

Darma and Terry said to Kong, “Next time, I’ll make sure it hits your head!!”Bookmark here

Darma then apologized for Roman’s words that had made Kong angry. “Please forgive Roman. We didn’t come here to fight. Please understand, Mr. Monkey. We came here in peace.”Bookmark here

Darma had not finished speaking, when suddenly Kong took a huge boulder and threw it at him, but once again Kenue destroyed it with his spear.Bookmark here

Darma froze because Kong’s throw was too fast. “Damn. I couldn’t evade that one. What a quick throw!”Bookmark here

Kenue was livid. “I’ve had enough of your tantrum. We’d better end this fight. I really don’t want to kill you. I watched people dear fall. I’ve seen too many people die to want to lose any more. Please don’t make me do it,” he said. Bookmark here

“You’re quite confident, brat. Those eyes are similar to Shinra’s. There was no hesitation at all when facing his opponent. You three can go. But this one brat, will stay here for insulting my best friend!! If you don’t like it, I’ll have to force you to leave!!”Bookmark here

“It’s inevitable. We really have to fight. I had warned you, but you brushed it aside,” Kenue said, preparing to attack.Bookmark here

“Kenue, don’t. He’s not our enemy!!” Darma said, trying to calm Kenue down.Bookmark here

“Why do you keep stirring trouble? Roman, you stupid!! I’ll beat him up later!!” Terry shouted angrily.Bookmark here

“Prepare to meet your maker!!” Kenue growled.Bookmark here

“Bring it on, brat!!”Bookmark here

Kenue attacked Kong quickly without hesitation. He swung his spear relentlessly at Kong.Bookmark here

Darma stared in mute amazement. For a moment, he saw his father in Kenue. Kenue fought really well and fast.Bookmark here

Kong kept dodging while jumping and holding on tree trunks. He could not launch an attack on Kenue. There was simply no opening.Bookmark here

Kenue managed to injure Kong’s right leg and left hand with his spear.Bookmark here

Damn. He’s too fast. I can’t attack him directly. There’s no opening. If so, I’ll simply create them. Kong thought.Bookmark here

Kong broke some logs and threw them at Kenue. Kenue managed to destroy them with ease. Then, he picked up some stones and threw them at Kenue.Bookmark here

Out of the blue, he flung stones at Terry and Darma to distract Kenue.Bookmark here

Seeing as Terry and Darma could not dodge the stones, Kenue moved to protect them using his spear. It was then that Kong had a chance to attack.Bookmark here

Kong jumped up and managed to land a hit on Kenue. A single punch to the stomach was more than enough to knock Kenue unconscious.Bookmark here

“No! Kenue!!” Darma and Terry shouted. They ran toward him.Bookmark here

Even though I can see the direction of the throw, my body isn’t fast enough to dodge it. Darma thought.Bookmark here

“You’re strong, brat, but anyone would find it hard to fight while protecting people, right?”Bookmark here

Something unexpected happened. Roman, who had been motionless all this time, suddenly jumped up from behind Kong and then performed his signature spinning kick to Kong’s head.Bookmark here

Kong collapsed and his body immediately went limp.Bookmark here

“Hey, Monkey, what do you think I am, huh? You just ignored me. I’m very strong, you know!” Roman boasted, getting ready to hit him.Bookmark here

“Roman, that’s enough!! Stop!!” Terry snapped.Bookmark here

“He was the one who attacked us first. I’ll teach him a lesson!”Bookmark here

Enraged, Terry picked up her arrow and aimed it at Roman. “Stop it, Roman!! Otherwise I’ll have to stop you by force!!”Bookmark here

Roman ceased his attack on Kong. Kong passed out for quite a while.Bookmark here

The four of them wondered why there were monsters not affiliated with the Monster Kingdom. They remained there until Kong came to his senses.Bookmark here

A few hours later, Kong woke up and said, “What are you guys doing here anyway? Just kill me, please...”Bookmark here

“I thought so, too,” Roman said.Bookmark here

“Shut up, Roman!! We’re not here to fight. We wanted to find a safe place for the villagers because we had an accident. Our village was attacked by the Sharkins,” Terry explained.Bookmark here

Kong’s gaze immediately changed when he heard that name.Bookmark here

He used to have a child and a wife. They were killed by the Sharkins. He allowed his son to befriend the humans. However, when the village was attacked by the Sharkins, his son and wife were also there, so they were slaughtered too. At that time, he was furious, but he realized that it was impossible to defeat the Sharkins.Bookmark here

In the end, he locked himself in this cave. A long time had passed until he met Shinra, a swordsman. They trained together and became good friends. They were like brothers.Bookmark here

Terry snapped at Roman and said, “Hurry up and apologize, Roman!! You’re the one who started all this.”Bookmark here

“Nice to meet you. My name is Kong.”Bookmark here

Roman was still reluctant to apologize. “Why do I have to?”Bookmark here

“You’re the one who got Kenue hurt because of your doing and your empty head!!” Terry snapped.Bookmark here

“Hey, my head isn’t empty, all right? It’s just not filled yet. Maybe. Fine. It’s my bad. I’m sorry, Kong. The name’s Roman.”Bookmark here

“I’m sorry, Kenue,” Kong said, ignoring Roman’s apology.Bookmark here

“Hey, you should apologize to me. You flung me onto the wall, you empty-headed monkey!!” Roman said in annoyance.Bookmark here

“Shut up. You’re the one who’s empty-headed, Roman,” Terry said.Bookmark here

“It’s okay. I’m sorry too, Kong. My name is Kenue.”Bookmark here

“I’m Terry.”Bookmark here

“I’m Darma. Pleased to meet you.”Bookmark here

“My apologies. Because of my past, I have a hard time trusting humans. Still, there was a human who was so kind to me. He’s different.”Bookmark here

Kong got strong and skilled in fighting thanks to Shinra. Shinra was a very strong and fast dual wielding swordsman. Even without using a sword, his strength was already on par with Kong’s.Bookmark here

Then, Kong told the four of them a little about his friend. “He’s very strong. I’ll introduce you to my friend later. He’s a quiet person, but he has a good heart.”Bookmark here

“Is it true? But, Kong, why are you different? You came from the same place as the Sharkins and the others, right?” Terry asked.Bookmark here

“That’s right. Most of the monsters were sent to Earth. I used to be a follower of the first monster leader, Firouza. However, after he was succeeded by Satyr, Firouza’s followers started to be targeted by them. That’s why we hid away from Satyr’s Monster Kingdom lackeys.”Bookmark here

“Oh, I see. I understand now. When did the succession take place?” Terry asked.Bookmark here

“The election of a new monster leader is held once every 500 years!”Bookmark here

Roman and the others were thunderstruck by this revelation.Bookmark here

“What?? How old are you?” Terry asked curiously.Bookmark here

“I’m still young. I’m only 6.5 centuries old. Actually, humans and monsters had a peace treaty 1,000 years ago. From the beginning of Firouza’s reign until the fifth century, the Earth was fine. However, after Satyr took over as the new leader and recruited the Rhinos and the others into the Monster Kingdom’s army, he began to gradually change the rules between humans and monsters. Moreover, the new leader election will be held in the near future. I gather that has made Satyr even more violent in the last twenty years. That’s all I know.”Bookmark here

Terry was taken aback by the story. “Wow. I didn’t know about this. Thank you, Kong, for explaining it so well to us. Oh yeah, by the way what’s your friend’s name?” she asked, curious.Bookmark here

Suddenly, Shinra turned up and said, “It’s me. My name is Shinra.”Bookmark here

He came riding on his gallant horse. His sturdy body and gravelly voice indicated that he was an exceptional person.Bookmark here

“What are you doing here? Do you guys want to harass Kong?”Bookmark here

Roman was offended by Shinra’s words. “Hey, get off your high horse. Who do you think you are? Trying to be cool!”Bookmark here

Kong explained to Shinra. “They’re good people. Come here, Shinra. They’re just wandering around here. They’re looking for a place where they and their fellow villagers can live in peace without being attacked by monsters.”Bookmark here

“Be strong. That’s all. If you’re strong, wherever you live, you’ll be fine,” Shinra said curtly.Bookmark here

“Oh, sorry. Shinra always speaks like that. He’s right. Nowadays, it’s not just humans, even fellow monsters like me are also in danger. So we have to keep training to get even stronger.”Bookmark here

“Strong? You look like a pampered prince. You don’t even know how cruel the outside world is,” Roman said, mocking Shinra.Bookmark here

“You damn vagrant. The way you talk reflects who you really are. I’m so sorry for the three of you,” Shinra said while looking at Terry, Darma, and Kenue. “He must be the one who always troubles you, right?”Bookmark here

“What did you say?? You want to fight, huh, Flashy Prince?? You think I’m intimidated by your swords, huh? Bring it on, you spoiled bastard!!”Bookmark here

“Stop it, Roman. Your head is completely empty, isn’t it? You’re so irritating. You always do what you want. You’ve hurt Kenue. Now you want to put us all in danger, huh?!” Terry snapped.Bookmark here

“But he was being flashy. Besides, don’t you remember, it was me who beat Kong with my spinning kick. Hyah,” Roman said, posing for a kick.Bookmark here

Shinra’s eyes widened. He beat Kong? With one kick? Is he really that strong? I still can’t believe it.Bookmark here

His interest piqued, Shinra challenged Roman to fight. “Okay. I’ll test your strength. I won’t kill you. I won’t use my swords, seeing that you excel in hand-to-hand combat. I’ll use my bare hands.”Bookmark here

Roman’s muscular arms and legs showed that he was indeed a bare-handed martial artist.Bookmark here

Worried, Terry said, “But it’s better not to fight. What should we do?”Bookmark here

Kong was also confused. He said to Shinra, “Shinra, why do you want to fight? It’s not like you.”Bookmark here

“I just wanted to make him realize that the world he spoke of was indeed cruel. I want to show him what I’ve been through so far!”Bookmark here

“Come at me. I’ve never lost in a one-on-one with a human. Especially in a hand-to-hand combat,” Roman bragged.Bookmark here

“Will it all be okay, Kong?” Terry asked worriedly.Bookmark here

“Take it easy. He won’t seriously fight Roman.”Bookmark here

“It seems we’ll be able to witness Shinra’s real strength, as Roman’s strength is remarkable,” Darma said.Bookmark here

“Strong? He just likes to talk big, really,” Kenue said, roasting Roman.Bookmark here

“Hey, damn you, Kenue. You think I can’t hear it? How can you mock your friends when they’re going to fight against an opponent?”Bookmark here

The fight began. Shinra rushed and stopped right before Roman. Roman, who was stunned, immediately tried to punch Shinra in the face, but Shinra avoided by jumping to the side while launching a kick toward Roman’s face.Bookmark here

With quick reflexes, Roman blocked the kick with both hands. Then, Shinra backed away and paused for a moment. Suddenly, Roman’s hands trembled.Bookmark here

“Is our fight over, champ??” Shinra taunted, smirking.Bookmark here

Damn. His kick is so strong. If I hadn’t parried it, my face would’ve been crushed. It was much stronger than Kong’s attack. He’s a monster in human form!! But Roman did not want to look weak. “Is this all you can do? It’s nothing.”Bookmark here

“Good. Because if that’s all you’re capable of, I’ll be very disappointed.”Bookmark here

“Shut it!!”Bookmark here

Enduring his pain and embarrassment, Roman advanced to attack Shinra. He threw his signature knee kick multiple times, but they were easily blocked by Shinra.Bookmark here

“Take this, my signature spinning kick!!”Bookmark here

Shinra kicked at the same time. The two collided in the air with their strong kicks. However, Roman was sent flying about five meters. He tried to get up, but his legs could not move. He fell to his knees.Bookmark here

Damn. His kick is so strong!! No. Actually, he was just holding back my kick and made a slight push toward me. Am I that weak? Is he too strong? He’s not fighting seriously. Damn!! “Let’s stop this fight for a while. I’m getting hungry. You’re so lucky that I fight you on an empty stomach,” Roman said, unwilling to admit defeat.Bookmark here

“You’re lying. Boo… The power gap is plain to see. You suck,” Kenue booed.Bookmark here

“What the hell? Damn you, Kenue!” Roman shouted, still motionless due to Shinra’s hard kick.Bookmark here

Terry joined in on booing him, “I agree with Kenue. The difference is too large. Boo…”Bookmark here

Darma scoffed, “It’s like a sensei fighting against his inexperienced student.”Bookmark here

“Hey, Darma, why are you being annoying? Argh,” Roman said, annoyed.Bookmark here

Kong, Terry, Kenue, and Darma laughed.Bookmark here

“Sorry, Roman,” Darma said.Bookmark here

Shinra walked over to Roman and said, “Are we done now?”Bookmark here

Shinra held out his hand toward Roman. Roman took his hand.Bookmark here

They ate and talked until late. In the morning, they woke up and immediately wished to return to their village. They said goodbye to Kong, but they did not see Shinra.Bookmark here

“Where did the Flashy Prince go?” Roman asked.Bookmark here

“Shinra went home when you all were fast asleep. He didn’t want to wake you up. So he didn’t say goodbye to you.”Bookmark here

“That pampered prince. Watch it, I’ll definitely become stronger,” Roman said. He could not admit that he had been defeated.Bookmark here

Terry, Darma, and Kenue bid Kong goodbye. “We’re going home, thank you for your kindness, Kong.”Bookmark here

Roman approached Kong and held his fist out. “Kong, see you later.”Bookmark here

Kong bumped their fists and said, “Take care. Until we meet again, Roman.”Bookmark here

The four talked a lot on the way home. They talked about Shinra and the peace treaty between humans and monsters.Bookmark here

A few hours later, they finally reached their village, but a strange thing occurred.Bookmark here

The villagers were nowhere to be found. There were no signs of damage or traces of fighting. They were confused as to what had happened exactly. However, there was one possibility that they suspected. It must be the Crocos and other monsters.Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.