The woman, however, seemed utterly hopeless at the moment. "Sure, please just make it quick. That's all we ask for."
Roan looked at them and shook his head in response. "I have no interest in your souls. Instead, I want to ask about the devils in this region. Is what that guy said true? This Huopis Clan is the one controlling it?"
However, when she heard that, the woman didn't seem to get any happier. Instead, both she and the other humanoids around seemed to have given up on living. "How would we know? We're just some humanoids. You devils had never told us anything."
Roan narrowed his eyes after hearing that. "If you're afraid that I'm going to kill you, there's no need to be. You just need to tell me everything you know, and that'll be enough."
"It seems like you aren't from any of the devil races nearby," replied the woman. "We'll basically be responsible for the death of the devils you killed. Even if you don't kill us, we won't live for much longer in this place. Literally, any simple reason can get a Soul Gathering Spot wiped out. Let alone the death of the devils themselves."
Roan looked around and saw how disheartened everyone looked. "So that's how it is, huh" He didn't feel that the woman was lying, and he was a very good lie detector.
Rean also approached them and couldn't help but ask, "Can't you simply leave? I can't feel the presence of any other devil at the moment. It doesn't seem like the devils keep an eye on your either."
Hearing that, the woman felt confused. These two devils seemed a lot more concerned about what would happen to them than she expected. To her, that wasn't how devils normally acted. Well, at least not the devils that came to receive the souls. Of course, she still decided to explain the issues. "It's useless. Where would we run off to? If we leave the living dome, we'll basically wither away to nothingness from the Dark Element outside. The only places suitable to live are the ones like this. We aren't devils, sirs."
Roan agreed with her on that point. "She's right. The Dark Element concentration outside far surpasses the other elements. It's not a problem if you intend to stay just a few days. However, if you stay too long, then death is pretty much guaranteed. The ones with lower cultivation, like the kids, would be the first ones to be affected."
"I see..." Rean and Roan obviously didn't have a problem with it because they both could use Dark Element. It's just that there weren't other humanoid race members capable of doing the same thing.
Roan knew what Rean was thinking and immediately intervened. 'You better not think about putting them in the Dimensional Realm. We don't have time to take care of their needs. It's one thing to help them against the devils from earlier, but another to commit to keeping them alive. Don't forget that staying with us might have them end up in an even worse state than staying away from us. That's why we didn't bring Calina, Qia, and the others.'
Rean sighed but could only nod his head in the end. 'Fine, I won't do such a thing.'
Roan also reminded Rean about another point. 'Also, I hope you didn't forget that these same humanoids were the ones who captured the ones inside those formations. They wanted to give them away. Don't think of them as if they're just victims.'
That was right. Rean had nearly forgotten that for a moment. "Tell me, why are you capturing other humanoids? I could understand if you used demon beasts' souls, but there are quite a few humanoid races in those formations. Right, before you explain, you still haven't told me your name."
At this point, the woman understood that those two devils wouldn't attack. Or at least not attack for now. "I'm Domelia. As for the first question, that's how things work in the living domes. The humanoids and demon beast gatherings try to capture souls to be used by the devils. In our living dome, at least, there are basically two types of devils. The bestial devils and the humanoid devils. For the bestial ones, demon beast souls are the best match. Naturally, the humanoid devils do better with humanoid souls."
She continued, "Not only do we attack other humanoid settlements, but we also receive attacks every now and then. The objective is to reach our quota every decade. In our case, we have to offer 300 demon beast souls and 200 humanoid souls every ten years. The humanoids you see locked in the formations are humanoids from settlements we attacked or the ones we found in our patrols. It goes without saying that we also lost quite a few of our own. No one wants to have their souls extracted, as you saw a few moments ago."
For a second, Rean found it weird. Ten years seemed to be quite a short time for demon beasts and humanoids to develop enough numbers to keep this quota. However, when he paid a little more attention to what was inside his Divine Sense, he quickly noticed that there was a huge number of kids further in the background. Not only that but pretty much every single woman there was pregnant. At least the ones who seemed to be in a condition to have offspring. "Simply put, this is a breeding zone for souls, huh? So many big bellies..."
Domelia nodded in response. "If we don't fight for those humanoid souls, we'll be the ones to have our souls extracted. The only way for any of the settlements to have enough fighting power is to continue to grow despite the number of warriors we lose. That's why you can see that we keep getting more and more kids. There are two things that we never run out of, food and water. So at least our people will never starve or dry to death. You also saw what could happen if we don't meet our quota."
In the end, the reality was just that bad. It didn't matter if one was from the humanoid race or not.
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