Chapter 127: Stick

Translator: Haruchin   Editor: Marky

Seven, eight rats gathered, and the kids dealt with them. The ones who managed to escape were stabbed by Butler’s rapier, or magnificently hit by Chris with one slash, or killed by Shiva’s cooking knife.

「Oh, Shiva? What’s that? 」
Dinosso asked with a smile, obviously put off.

「Don’t worry, I won’t use this for cooking. 」
Shiva smiled brightly.

Please stop looking at me, Dinosso. Blame me after you won against your wife, okay?

Shiva’s original weapons are short twin swords, and a spirit weapon powered by the ice spirit possessing her. Our current place is too cramped and crowded and cold, so she can’t use them, apparently.

The temperature would drop if she swung it, and then it would be too cold, she said.
The person herself was fine even if the snow raged around her, apparently.

「Hmm, only a handful of rats around here have magic stones. The guys at the fort said Amadeo and his lackeys had been in here a few times, so maybe the ones here in the shallow part are young… I guess. 」
Retze looked grim.

It takes a certain period of time for the monsters to accumulate magic ores within their bodies. So Retze already gathered intel without us noticing?

「Let’s move, we’re going a bit further in. 」
「Ye~s! 」
「Yes! 」
The three kids’ response was followed by Dean’s resounding, hearty yes.

Chris is also a lot more enthusiastic than usual, but his flowery rhetorics had been toned down. Seems like they really admire Dinosso.

Retze’s acting like his usual self, but he also said Dinosso’s amazing. It’s just that looking at Dean and Chris acting like that probably made him restrain his buoyant mood. I get where he’s coming from.

We went down the shaft to the lower level, deeper into the tunnel. It was even more damp down here, with water seeping in. The wood supporting the ceiling and walls to prevent them from caving in and to keep rocks from falling had started to rot because of the moisture. The stones had also crumbled.

Will we really be alright?

「It’s probably the aftermath of a piece falling off, kinda like peeled off. Can’t assure you it absolutely won’t collapse, but the bedrock here is pretty hard, so I don’t think this place will crumble in one go. 」
Retze explained while rummaging inside his bag, probably because he caught me staring at the pieces of shattered rock.

「You’ll find worms and larvae in this layer, so be more careful. The dry places have a higher probability of collapsing than the wet spots. 」

The earthworms and larvae bored holes and water flowed there, apparently.

「Where, let’s try it out? 」
The lantern lit up.

「Ah, what the heck is that? 」
Dean asked Retze.

There’s an upside down cone shaped reflector attached to the top of the lantern, so the light is scattered in proportion to the size of the fire.

I tried to make methanol using distilled wood vinegar as an attempt to do away with the rapeseed oil, but it was a flop. Lamps that used methanol and ethanol were actually for heating, not light… Well, I guess it works out if I use it for the vacuum coffee maker. Ahh, I want kerosine.

「As expected, it’s darker than a torch, but it’s easier to carry around. Heh, this is really good. 」
Retze shook the lantern. Well, it IS lighter and smaller than a torch.

「Hoh? It doesn’t have a candle inside? 」
Butler stared at the lantern with deep interest.

「It’s beautiful! 」
「Mm. 」
Chris and Ash.

The kids were also very curious since it’s something they haven’t seen before.

「Unlike candles, its light won’t easily get extinguished, so it’s great outdoors. It’s just that you can’t use it to roast monsters or scare them away…Here, let’s swap for a while so gimme the torch. 」
Retze exchanged the lantern with En’s torch.

「Don’t drop it. 」
「Yes. 」

「I’ll hold it next! 」
「No, follow the turns! I’m next! 」

I also have lanterns in 【Storage】, but I got the feeling that it wouldn’t be a good idea taking one out for each of us here. Besides, I learned that torches have other uses from what Retze said.

Dinosso was pinching his brows, though. Hey, Retze didn’t even mention me, so why do you keep on glancing at me and shaking your head, huh?

Yeah, I know, I know, I’ve been quite indulgent of Butler’s fascination in cooking, Shiva’s delight in knives, and Retze’s interest in bags and devices.

The kids held the lantern, so the stick’s role was demoted to tapping suspicious spots.

「Oh, it’s dry. There’s a hole here. 」
I poked the hole with the stick, and when I took it out, something white stuck on it.

It’s a squiggly, orange-headed larva. It’s probably a rhinoceros beetle’s larva, but it’s as big as a two liter plastic bottle. It has one horn, and when it creakily raised its chin, the super-sharp looking fangs came into view. It looked quite strong.

「I see, so the longer, the better, huh. 」
Dinosso was moved.

「Good job tearing the skin! 」
「On top of being pretty tough, the body tends to wriggle, avoiding impact, so it’s hard to tear. 」
「So it’s a problem of thickness and speed. 」

Chris, Dean and Ash were also awed, but it’s not like I purposely aimed for it and defeated this thing. I just poked the hole and this monster was in there coincidentally.

The rapier team’s in charge of dealing with the monsters lurking inside the holes. However, the big ones also got big heads, so the only thing they could aim at is the hard head. The huge sword team — Dinosso and Dean — took the lead then.

They’re monsters, so they won’t just meekly stay shut in inside the holes, obviously. They also attack, but they tend to wait for their prey to come closer before they poke their heads out to spit acid at them. And so, I was assigned to work on them and make them spit by poking the stick near their holes while standing away from them.

The kids learned from their dad. They threw stones to make them spit.

「… 」
Like this?

Poke, poke, once the head is out, then crush before it spit acid.

「Amazing. It’s amazing, but let them spit first, it’s gonna be tough work dismantling those guys. And don’t just rely on that stick for everything. 」
Retze was also impressed but he didn’t forget to teach me.

「Jean-sama’s new weapon is a stick… Oh, no, please don’t mind me. 」
「A stick made from magic ore… 」

That’s terrible of you, Butler and Dean.

One Comment

  1. Thanks for the treat.

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