Chapter 112: Messenger from the Dwarf Kingdom
When I was in the midst of cooking, Cathy returned but she was slightly flustered.
“The hole is gradually beginning to widen nya. If we don’t get Dolan-san or Grand-san’s help to reinforce it, it might be bad nya.”
“Were there any injuries?”
“None, for now, nya.”
In this town, even at night, it was still modestly bright due to the pseudo-moon and pseudo-stars.
It looked like the time was around dusk, there’s a possibility that the monsters might overflow instantly if the hole continues to widen into the night so just to be safe …
“Then, to secure magic stones, I guess I’ll go over too.”
“I’d prefer if you don’t fall down a hole this time nya.”
” … I’ll position myself carefully.”
After that, I spoke to Cathy and it was decided that Dolan would come along and we ultimately arrived at the central square.
“It has certainly widened. Dolan, is the Dwarf Kingdom close by?”
“About an hour from here.”
“Do you think that this hole might be connected to the Dwarf Kingdom?”
” … In that case, if we reconstruct this to a flight of stairs, this position will become assailable as well right? When that happens, we’ll be able to disperse the monsters that are headed for the Dwarf Kingdom to head here as well.”
“I see. However, as might be expected, I don’t have a firm grasp of the underground structure.”
Well, that’s normal.
While apologizing for blurting out what came to mind, I told them that I planned to use the torchlight to shine into the hole to take a look.
“Cathy, I’ll leave the monsters to you. When I shine the torchlight while making sure not to fall in, if the monster numbers are large, Dolan, please bury the hole for the time being.”
“I will not allow Rockford to fall to monsters!”
I held the torchlight and Holy Dragon Spear as I approached the hole and shined the light.
The monsters that appeared within the hole rapidly stirred and a literal horde rushed forward. I pierced with my spear while Cathy leaped as she began attacking to prevent the ants from coming out of the hole.
Dolan touched the ground and the ant hole narrowed but it stopped just as it was on the verge of closing completely.
“Dolan, it’s better if you don’t completely seal it. It’s better than not knowing where they might appear and cause confusion.”
If we don’t figure out why the ant monsters are stirring, I have a feeling we might not be able to stop the monsters.
I have not heard of any previous cases where monsters invaded this town since the time Sir Rainstar constructed it.
The earthquakes alone do not fully explain it.
I had a nagging feeling that it was so.
“If this was going to be the case, it would have been better if we brought Paula along and asked her to solidify the surface of the ground.” (Dolan)
“I can call her over nya?” (Cathy)
“Cathy and I are needed to exterminate the ants. For the sake of unforeseen circumstances, Dolan, you have to remain here as well.” (Luciel)
“Hmm, then shall we ask somebody to run an errand?” (Dolan)
” … We’ll stay like this until Kefin returns. It’s not like the researchers in this town would suck their thumbs and merely watch right?” (Luciel)
“Yeah. But, there isn’t someone to lead as a commander.” (Dolan)
“Dolan, your complexion is pale? Don’t tell me, there’s a difference in burying the earth and completely sealing the hole?” (Luciel)
” … If I could not stop just now, I would have fallen into magical power depletion.” (Dolan)
“I’d prefer if you told me that in advance.” (Luciel)
“Cathy, what about Lionel?” (Luciel)
” … I believe he’s capable of doing so, but he won’t do it nya.” (Cathy)
“Ha~. Then, when I’m leading, would he give me advice?” (Luciel)
“Of course nya.” (Cathy)
“Only if it becomes a defensive battle though. Leaving that aside, do the monsters feed on the dead monster’s corpses?” (Luciel)
“I don’t know nya. But there is such a possibility nya.” (Cathy)
“I’ve heard that monsters also go into territorial disputes.” (Dolan)
“So we’ll have to defeat them in a way that they don’t fall back down huh. It won’t be funny if the others consume them and level up.” (Luciel)
If I’m not mistaken, ants are omnivores and I imagine that they are capable of eating anything so it will be bad if that happens.
Until Kefin returned, we concentrated on defeating the monsters.
Because at most only 3 monsters can appear from the hole at the same time, it wasn’t that hard of a fight as long as we defeated them pre-emptively, but when I shined the torchlight, the ants clustered together in the hole.
I tried using purification magic but it had no effect so we have no choice but to continue cutting them down like this? Or was it better if we had buried them? I wondered about that.
While I was wondering, a visitor appeared.
“Luciel-sama, sorry to keep you waiting.”
Kefin returned with 2 dwarves.
“You’re back, they are?”
“Yes. They are the Dwarf King’s aides, Guraios-dono and Aresurei-dono. I was told to bring them along no matter what so I could not refuse … the 2 of them will convey the additional information.”
“I see. Kefin, swap places with me. Cathy, please hold out for slightly longer. Dolan, please participate in the talks with me.”
At that instant, the complexion of the 2 dwarves changed.
I don’t know whether it was because I directed him, I called him without any honorifics or that Dolan obediently followed.
Well, I’m currently not bothered by their reactions.
“I am Luciel, S-rank healer of Saint Schull’s Church. Well then, please tell me the response from the king of the Dwarf Kingdom at once.” (Luciel)
” … Here?” (Dwarf 1)
“With the criminal Do …” (Dwarf 2)
“I dare you to say any more, I will not hesitate to abandon my obligation towards the Dwarf Kingdom.” (Luciel)
“He is my retinue who has spared no efforts for my sake and is currently hired as the head of my research and development team. I think it is better if you commit that into your skull before you speak?” (Luciel)
The 2 of them exchanged startled looks and whispers before they began speaking once again.
“We apologize for the disrespect. I am Guraios. We have suffered casualties so the Dwarf King hopes to request for aid but he has tasked us to determine if we dwarves are able to pay for the healer fees.” (TL: He used respectful speech xD)
” … Kefin, what was your impression of the Dwarf Kingdom?”
“It was fatigued. It’s not as if all their residents have a good command of combat and their days should be numbered.”
“What did you say! Are you making fun of us dwarves!!”
” … To be honest, it doesn’t matter what you think so don’t interrupt our conversation. He may be a slave but he is also my follower. He is an outstanding personnel who is capable of accurately conveying information. What I want to hear now are not emotion-backed arguments.”
I shot down the remark from the man called Araios. (TL: The author switched from Guraios to Araios for some reason, don’t know if typo or originally it was meant to be Araios)
“Did it look like they had a shortage of food?”
“It didn’t look like food was a problem but the rapid expenditure of equipment and the need for treatment of the wounded were clearly more pressing problems. We confronted many monsters on the way to the Dwarf Kingdom.”
“Ha~. Kefin, please call everyone over. Please ask Grand-san and Toretto-san to come as well.”
The 2 dwarves were shocked when Kefin disappeared.
A person disappearing would look like they transferred so I probably would have been shocked too.
I looked at the 2 dwarves and asked.
“As you can see, due to the impact of the earthquake today, Rockford was also attacked by monsters. What I want now is information regarding the situation underground. For example, are other monsters present as well when the ant monsters attack or what exactly is the boss of the ants? Or is there more than one? Please tell me what you know. Incidentally, this is the fee table for a healer.”
After handing over the guidelines, I continued the ant extermination with Cathy.
“Does it look like we’ll be able to help them nya?”
“I don’t know. It depends on their choices. If there are many individuals similar to Araios, I am no longer burdened like in Ienith so I won’t deliberately go to a dangerous place like the Dwarf Kingdom.”
“During that time in Ienith, it would have been better if the choices could be split so clearly nya.”
“I was burdened by way too much in Ienith. Even though it was already tough enough with just Kefin and you all.”
I smiled bitterly as I strike the ants.
“That’s cruel nya. Leaving aside Dolan and Paula, we were obedient …”
“It’s more like I didn’t find out.” (Luciel)
“Well, you had opponents as well so it was inevitable on Lionel and your part.” (Luciel)
I did not direct my gaze toward the 2 Dwarven King’s aides as we both talked.
After giving them the pricing plan, I plan to ascertain what they think and I wonder how their attitudes will change when Grand-san arrives.
I did not know what was the content of the letter written by Dolan and Grand.
However, I had already decided to trust them.
While we defeated the monsters, the dwarves did not approach us nor did they speak to us.
At that point, Grand-san arrived but he ignored the 2 of them and headed my way before bowing.
“I’m sorry. But, it is still my hometown after all. I hope that you will help.”
“Well, I’ve already prepared myself. I was just thinking about the course to take to the Dwarf Kingdom.
I’d like to ask Dolan, Paula, and Rician to defend here. Only defend, absolutely do not enter the hole.
Please cooperate with everyone to defend this town.
I don’t mind if you use all the magic stones from the monsters corpses lying there.”
“I’m sorry that you came at an awkward timing but, Toretto-san, I’d like to ask you to support them.
You’re the only one capable of directing them.”
“Fo~!! My fighting spirit will overflow if you give me that scorching look. Just this one time, I’ll do my best for the sake of my 2 disciples.”
After brilliantly avoiding Toretto-san’s wink, I continued giving out instructions.
“Lionel, I’d have you defend with the large shield and fight with the short spear.
Cathy and Kefin will be the mobile unit, I’ll be responsible for healing and support.
Also, I’ll have Grand-san come along with us.
I’d like to ask Grand-san to conduct all the negotiations with the Dwarf King.”
” … Are you alright with giving me that task?”
“Yes. Currently, there are only 3 dwarves I trust in this world, Dolan-san, Paula, and Grand-san.”
” … Understood. Fu~ You’ve changed considerably after a couple of years.”
“The reason why you think that I’ve changed may be because I have reliable companions by my side now.”
As I replied to Grand-san’s bitter smile with my own smile, I made a single resolve.
In the worst case, even if the Dwarf Kingdom collapses, we will survive.
Thank you for reading.