Volume 7, Chapter 16: In the North, Part 5, Part 2
There are monsters in the dungeon.
Wild beasts may come to mind at first at the term, which tend to live in ordinary caves and ruins,
Monsters, though… what makes a true monster?
There are some theories around, but the lead theory is the influence of mana.
Mages can capture animals and turn them into monsters, and dead bodies filled with magic become undead.
Other than that, there are things that are possessed by lower demons or other spirits, and even things like unicorns and dragons, but generally, the term monster includes those too,
It is believed that dungeons contain so many monsters because the levels are magically created by the dungeon master, but in fact, with the amount of ambient mana, animals would not become monsters in a short period.
Dungeons have “Something” which draws in monsters. However, nobody knows exactly what.
A long boy is running through such a dungeon.
Daichi was running at full power, sweat, tears, and snot dripping from him as he ran down the passage while holding the sword bought for him by their blonde haired “guardian” in this different world.
A few goblin zombies appeared in front of Daichi.
He had never seen a live goblin before now, but these were definitely zombies, from the smell of rotting skin and glowing eyes.
Apparently, this dungeon is a prime hang-out for undead monsters.
Since Daichi had heard from Yurushia that this dungeon was the cause of the zombie plague, he wasn’t surprised to find zombies here, but even so, scary things are scary.
No matter how much strangeness he’d experienced in the last few months since being a high schooler, it’s natural to fear moving corpses and deadly monsters.
A common story like a summoned hero defeating a monster, when Daichi thought of that, he would picture someone far from ordinary.
With his nose running, and tears falling, Daichi quickly strikes out at the goblin zombies.
The blade falls accurately, and his muscles don’t fail him.
The [Battle Skills] and “Terror” engraved into his body and soul over the past few months gave Daichi the power to fight, even if he believed he’d lose.
No… Rather than that, Daichi is demonstrating his resolve.
What happened to him, you asked?
Daichi screamed like a maiden before a speeding shadow defeated the zombies in moments.
Standing in front of him now, Nea, holding an evil-feeling golden sword, turned to Daichi with a surprisingly lovely smile.
When they fell into this dungeon they were separated from the others, and Nea, now alone with him, all of a sudden acted like a shy little girl.
“[I’ll follow you, alright? If I catch up again, please prepare your neck, Daichi.]”
He wasn’t sure what she meant by that.
It sounded cute, but that doesn’t matter.
Even though it sounded like a joke, the words make Daichi feel instantly more serious, rather, what she said sounded Serious.
Even if her manner was like asking him to keep his second button closed, he can’t trust that tone.
After all, in past trainings, Nea would often slice at Daichi with practice swords without remorse.
It was only because of their “Guardian,” Yurushia that they hadn’t died until now, with her staying close by and healing all their injuries.
However, now there’s no safeguard.
Nobody is here to scold Nea when she goes for overkill, by taking her attention back.
Even then, every now and then, after being scolded, Nea would shout out the word “Repent” before beating up Daichi the next day.
Daichi acknowledges Nea as a master swordswoman but there is a problem.
He has to admit that there is a wide difference between Nea and Daichi’s combat capabilities.
However, although his teacher is so far beyond him, and mysterious besides, a boy’s heart yearns to prove his strength, simply because Nea’s appearance is that of a beautiful girl around his age.
Adolescent libido takes priority every time.
Back to the subject at hand.
Currently, in order for Daichi to survive, the only option is to survive and make it to Yurushia.
If Nea catches up to him before then, death is waiting. Although she said “Neck” in such a sweet tone, that can’t be interpreted as anything other than hell training.
In the depths of his heart, he hoped that this training would stop if he were about to die, but picturing Nea’s pleasant smile, his hopes died a swift death.
Suddenly, a gigantic Orc Zombie appeared, Daichi screamed before he slid under its legs.
The moment Daichi saw the Orc Zombie, with it’s fighting power, he calculated the time it would take to defeat it and the time for Nea to catch up with him, and, mustering up his instincts, took that action.
Somewhere along the line, he had forgotten his fear of monsters.
Even though more enemies awaited him, it was better than Nea, who was approaching behind him.
Beyond the battle training, the “Treatment” that Yurushia had performed without Daichi’s knowledge was starting to take effect.
It’s best for ordinary people not to know what exactly was done.
Looking behind him at the strange slashing sound, the orc zombie had been reduced to rotten chunks in a single blow by Nea
Seeing Nea’s pretty smile while surrounded by rotting gore, Daichi screamed and ran as fast as he could once more.
“It’s the intruder!”
The next obstacle to appear were a few men wearing knight-like plate.
Why would humans be in this kind of place? Were they originally humans? What did they mean by ‘Intruder’?
While he is wary of the normal humans, Daichi appreciates their presence from the bottom of his heart.
“Thank you very much.”
“Prepare yourselves, attack!”
The knights pull their swords at the order and slash at Daichi’s heading without hesitation.
No use arguing.
Usually, attacking a dungeon is unrestricted unless the adventurer’s guild makes it impossible.
Any adventurer can move at their discretion, except for dungeons that are licensed in some countries and have dungeon masters paying their taxes.
So even though Daichi is here, he can’t be blamed.
However, from the knight’s point of view, this is a dungeon managed by Gamble. A place that needs to be kept secret for matters of national security.
Therefore, any intruder is evil and must be slain.
It’s a difference is thought, but which is incorrect differs depending on the perspective.
Sharp blade shaking in his hands, Daichi bends down and slides forward.
Blocking the sword swing at him without stopping his run, Daichi pushes through the tunnel filled with knights.
“Ah, I leave what’s following me to you!”
The knights are stunned at the fearless method of avoiding them, pausing for a moment.
“Follow him, he won’t escape!”
“Hold on, something’s coming!”
One of the younger knights noticed a presence approaching from further in the tunnel.
A young woman is running around the passage with a skip in her step. The knights in their flamboyant adornments who have trained themselves to call an elephant a beautiful girl forget all about battle for a moment.
“What are you guys doing? Isn’t that an intruder?”
Among them, the knight captain turns his sword towards the approaching girl.
He was Kanzo, a follower of the Hero, a vice captain of the Hero’s party which they led.
He was an aristocrat of Gamble, the second son of the Countess and formerly a senior knight.
He was unsatisfied with his current position. He was chosen on paper to be a member of the Hero’s party because of his appearance and fighting ability, but the real reason was because he was the highest-level disposable knight available.
He think’s he would be a better heir than his useless elder brother.
Although he’s in such an honorable [Hero’s Party], he was unhappy to be serving such a special hero.
Kanzo had taken on the Hero’s sexual harassment with a smile in order to raise himself within the group.
If he could show that he’s competent and get more results from upcoming battles, he may even be chosen as a royal guard.
By doing that, he thought, he could become the son-in-law of someone even higher up, enough to look down on the parents who put him here.
Everything was for his goal…
But even then, in the life he chose, he wants “Charm.”
Not just to get more money, but to enjoy beautiful women and relax, he wants this as much as anything else.
And here, before him, is a prey that perfectly matches his desire.
A beautiful girl with a cute smile.
He doesn’t know why she’s intruding and why the boy seemed scared, but he’ll catch up to the boy later, and ambush this girl for some pleasant times.
If they die later on, he can just report that they took care of the intruder.
“You all, pursue that little boy, hurry!”
Although the other knights don’t follow Kanzo from the bottom of their hearts, they will still serve the [Hero] as their duty as knights of Gamble.
The men obviously could tell that their captain had dark thoughts in mind, but they wouldn’t resist orders from their boss, who was a noble at that, but they seemed to all feel sympathy for the beautiful girl as they left.
The lead knight sharply swings at the girl’s arms.
The sword stopped moving. He couldn’t push it forward either. Looking at what happened, however…
When the sharp point of his sword came towards the girl, she didn’t even use the expensive looking magic sword in her hand, just gently grabbed his sword in her pale delicate fingertips.
The knight who had swung the sword, and the knights who were still nearby stood in amazement.
The knight, at his humiliation, tried to pull back the sword, dark emotions clouding his face, but the sword was immobile, as if caught in a huge rock.
As he looked at the girl, he noticed that he had made a fundamental misunderstanding of that smile… it was like a carnivorous flower, looking straight at him.
The prey at this time was himself…
With that lovely smile, giggling slightly, the girl gracefully pushed her fingertip into the knight’s chest.
Her bare hands penetrated the metal full-plate without ceremony, the knight, feeling her fingertip at the edge of his heart shook his head at the child, tears falling from his eyes.
The girl’s fingertips finished puncturing the poor knight’s heart, before she pulled out her hand along with “Something” and licked her bloody fingertips with a beautiful look, her lips bright red with blood as she turned her cute smile at the remaining knights.
The knight threw down their weapons as one and ran away screaming.
Nobody can tell that their faces hold the same expression as Daichi from before.
Nea’s cheery tone echoed through the dungeon as both Daichi and the knight ran through the corridors, staining the ground with tears as they ran side by side.
Nea actually things Daichi’s pretty cute. She’s just clumsy and a bit of a Yandere.
Next time, the dungeon master.
Took longer than expected, due to all the agonizing pain, but I got it done. Ha! Take that, quitter self! (Don’t worry about me injuring myself, I talked to my Orthopedist and they said that typing, despite the pain, would actually have a positive effect of my recovery, so yay!)
Lesson learned: don’t do tricks with rental ice skates, no matter how many years of hockey you played up through high school. Also, typing with one hand at a 90-degree angle splint is hard.