Translator: Ranzan Editor: JackOFallTrades
「Phew, that really sucked.」
Redhead instantly dried all her clothes and red hair with her wind magic.
Fwuff, her beautiful hair fluffed out as she sighed.
I angrily growled at her after seeing her nonchalant reaction to it all.
「Hey there! Stop acting like you’ve got no reaction to me. Because you blew away that huge thing without thinking at all, maybe you should apologize to me a little bit?」
「Ah, okay, okay, sorry, too bad, my fault.」
「Whoa-ho-ho! That useless apology with no feeling of sadness at all, you got some guts doing that!」
From there, we returned to the previous room where she washed me again in a water ball just as she did before.
It really was a catastrophe.
That oily liquid had covered me so many times like a trap or something before, but back then it seemed strangely smooth when it got on me, and the smell was like Camellia oil or something or something like flowers.
It made my hair lustrous too, so Redhead seemed to get me trapped in it simply so she could get some for herself.
However, this stuff was completely different. It wasn’t good at at all.
This was almost like vomit, technicolor yawn, the result of an ectoplasm barf skill from a drunk guy.
It had the smell of stomach acid with 10 times the stickiness that had been left to ferment for a month – that’s how stinky it was.
Just like a blob of sugarwater the size of a large piece of gravel, that giant isopod-thing left behind slimy chunks of carapace intermingled with pieces of bugs that it had consumed and were now covered in digestive juices.
Any lawyer worth his salt would have taken one look at what I was covered with and declared in large terms “NO OBJECTION” to the guilty decision that would have been ruled against Redhead.
「Yuk, no way, no way, being washed by a beautiful woman and so satisfied at getting an apology out of me makes you the confirmed accomplice to a criminal.」
「Getting me mixed up in all that nasty crap makes you the criminal then!」
I mean, I was just kind of angry that I was made wet all over again.
「That’s why I apologized, you lilting girl-of-a-man. Just shut up and I’ll dry you off too. 」
Suddenly a whirling field of wind surrounded my body.
It was a hot wind much like a drier, and I could feel the wetness from my body steam away.
「Hmph, okay, that’s enough.」
I wasn’t satisfied, but I didn’t want to just keep whining so I shut my mouth.
It seems that we finally cleared the dungeon though. There was a door deep past the protectors, and if you passed it then you could go outside, maybe? Maybe we could leave? Geez.
Maybe if we passed this door, you couldn’t say it was pass the protectors?
「A, anyway, we need to hurry out of here.」
「Y, yeah. Now or never.」
We left, and as we turned toward the door of the protectors, I still had that little feeling of worry in the back of my head, and I bet Redhead thought the same way too.
Well, maybe I’m too suspicious. It can’t all be bad like that. Maybe I’m getting annoying by thinking like this too much? Yeah.
No, I still couldn’t toss away my doubts, because I’d get massively broken if I did.
Plus, my worrying was way beyond usual.
And the same thing happened as before.
Between the protectors, the door in the back of the room wouldn’t open, and,
The double metal doors between the protectors slowly shut in front of us.
「WHY THE HELLLLL?!」
「WHAT THE FRICKKKK!?」
As long as the dungeon core wasn’t broken, we knew the boss between the protectors would come back to life. But, it wouldn’t come back so quickly. I mean, if you think about it, we couldn’t find the dungeon core, but…what’s going on?
There was no answer to be had, so we simply had to eliminate all the bugs all over again.
「「DIEEEEEEEE! DAMN IT ALLLLLLL!!!!」」
…it was pointless, as we growled loudly, I will say that I eliminated the bugs at a far faster pace than before as I descended into rage.
「「What the hell is the next trap, dangit?!」」
After flying forth in a half-rage, the room was reduced to a dead-like silence yet again.
We silenced all of the movement between the protectors like some kind of Musou game as we slashed all the bugs up out of pure anger.
With all the loud, annoying bugs dead, we then blew up the egg-thing without it hatching.
And now that we had the we-could-take-anything-out-attitude, we moved on to the next room as if we had kicked the door open.
This room was a simple and barren square room.
「This isn’t the exit!!」
「What now?! A floor trap? A falling ceiling trap!?」
「Where? Where is the trap here?」
We looked around with feverish eyes as the blood rushed through us.
We were trained in a lot of battles, so there was no blind spot to us.
But, as soon as the door closed behind us, there appeared a magic circle in the middle of the floor.
Particles of green light illuminated the room, and the whole room was suddenly lit.
However, that sudden change quickly disappeared before our eyes.
Almost like the world around was quickly changed into a white wave of light.
「This feels like the same power as transport, what is this place?」
「What the…maybe a trap?」
But nothing happened other than us being covered in a field of white. There was no symbol or anything else, but a glaring field of white that disturbed my sense of distance.
『This is not a trap.』
We heard a voice say from somewhere.
「Hey, what was that voice?」
「It doesn’t just seem to be my nerves then.」
We looked at each other and nodded in confirmation.
『Thank you, thank you, for the shortest dungeon clear, congrats!』
『Good job, you really made me laugh the most I ever have. You two really did a great job.』
『Especially the first heavy battle I didn’t even plan, the best! Every time I watched what was going on, I lost my breath so much I thought I’d die! Hee Hee, even now it makes me laugh…』
We were both lost, as a happy, smiling face floated before us, a 24, maybe 25 years old female. She had long hair that extended to her shoulders, the ends of which were curled tight like they had been permed.
This woman that was clothed in the garment of the Lunaria religion was laughing so hard it was exposing how mischievous she was.
However, there were three points about her that were different from normal.
One was the fact she was floating in a place slightly separated from us.
Even though there was no sensation of her using magic, she didn’t have any feet on the floor. Well, the white light around us was so bright it made that detail actually ambiguous.
Two was that even though she was in front of us, we didn’t feel that she was there.
We heard her voice, and could see her face floating there, but, there was no presence about her. There was no way for her to do this without having a high skill in silencing her presence so that no one could sense her.
And the final strange point.
We could see right through her, as she had a bluish-white translucent body. Well, the opposite of her was all white though.
Whatever, let’s put all those abnormal points aside.
We looked at each other and nodded.
「「Time to die…waaaaargh!」」
『Hee hee hee, I’m not Zhuge Liang, heh heh.』
Our attack was even stronger than the one we did against the giant isopod.
I focused on throwing everything that I had in my bag at her so much that I pretty much emptied it out.
Redhead focused on all the magic she could generate as fast as possible: fireballs, windballs, stoneballs, smokebombs, plant and thunder bombs, etc.
Thud whump thwomp whup thump as the attack resulted in the echoes of a bunch of dull sounds as the woman dodged everything much like a leaf dances in the breeze.
「Dammit! Stop moving!」
『Whoa, phew, wah, whee, keep firing! You can’t hit me with just that!』
「Don’t make fun of me! Just get ready for D E A T H!」
『Don’t want too, hee hee hee!』
She spun around in the air with that annoying smile still plastered on her face, and looked at us with a knowing smirk.
『Okay! Now time for your dungeon clear bonus! I wonder what to award you?』
「Then let me punch your face at least once!」
「And let me burn your body up once!」
『Can’t, let, youuuu…』
The girl laughing mockingly at the rain of magic suddenly disappeared.
『Maybe you’d like this? Here, a present.』
Then the presence-less girl appeared behind us with her half transparent legs and merged right into our bodies.
Zwaap, there was a feeling that something important in my body had been touched. The feeling that something had been applied to me.
【System Message: The Fire-Heart Spirit Sword had been removed.】
「Wha, that means…wait…」
An unexplainable theory and sensation was force upon us, and we understood why our attacks had no effect on her.
『Okay, you, don’t you depend on the fuzzy herb too much? I know you know this, but if you use it to keep your body from sleep, your spirit will still tire as an opposite effect. If you hard working kids listen to an older woman’s advice, you should do what I say.』
She giggled as she spoke to us in an admonishing tone.
『Okay then, have fun.』
With those words and a back step the woman distanced herself from us.
Just as she seemed to turn around, we could see the world around us begin to change again. Though we knew it would take little effect, I tried to throw one more thing at her.
I was just about to commence a throwing action when it happened.
Her face was the final thing that filled my vision, and then she gave me a lonely look that made me stop my attack.
I was fooled finally again, as we were both blown out of the dungeon.
When I came to, the stars and moon were bright in the sky, and we were in a small clearing, surrounded by a deep forest.
「Da…damn that woman! Next time, I’m definitely going to punch her!」
「Don’t get pissed now that you got fooled by her! You had a chance to hit her and you missed it!」
「Shut up! I know that more than you do!」
I said back as put my face in my hand in a feeling of complete failure.
Then suddenly the air about us changed due to the sound of our stomachs growling.
「G…gosh…food, get some food first. Hurry with the food.」
「Yeah, I’m hungry too.」
I was so tired I didn’t have an ounce of strength.
Since I had to do time-consuming work, I got a pot, water, salt and ricol fruit, and with that all together made something with the meat of a grateful boar.
「Not done yet? You haven’t finished it yet?」
「I’m hungry too, you know, so wait. It’s gonna take longer than this.」
「Ugh…I can’t wait any longer…」
I reached in my bag and gave Redhead a wooden bowl as she watched me stir the bowl like an expectant dog.
I let it cook a little longer, and then the dish was done.
「Give me that!」
「H…hey, wait! Calm down!」
She grabbed the ladle from me and began to dump the soup in her bowl quickly and then started eating.
It was the first time that I’ve seen her eat like that since the first day.
「Dammit, you’re going to clog your throat…」
「Nggh! Cough, hack!」
「Thank you for being flagged as the fastest eater.」
「Okay, okay, just eat as you like.」
After choking on it once, she soon recovered and took her second bowl, and then threw in the towel after eating too much with a sigh of relief.
I filled my stomach with my soup from the bowl, and I could see the inside of the soup pot disappear as I ate.
「Phew…that was good!」
「You really ate! If you sleep after you eat though, you’ll get fat!」
「What are you trying to say? No one ever says that’ll happen.」
After both of us eating two bowls of soup, we had finally finished eating.
With that we both laid out, satisfied, with our arms over our bellies.
I made the fire I had used to cook the soup into a campfire and sat with my back up against a tree.
「…I don’t know where the hell this is, but let’s settle that tomorrow. I’m tired.」
As far as I could see by the trees, I was in a border forest near the wilderness and the north part of the Empire where we fell into the dungeon. I didn’t know where I was exactly, but I would find my way when the sun came up. Since my spiritual intuition and perception had been leveled up considerably, I could relax knowing which direction most people were living, and if I went in that direction tomorrow, I would reach a town.
「Hey, how did you turn the meat of that nasty grateful boar into something this good?」
I was about to respond by saying, “Have someone tell you” but I decided to shut my mouth.
「…you boil it all up in ricol fruit.」
「Hm? What do you mean?」
「It’s the secret to make the grateful boar taste better. You wanted to know, right?」
「It was that ricol fruit then! Good, when I see my sister again, I’ll try it! Listen, blackhead, my sister’s food is really good. I’m a woman of talent that knows her magic, and the prettiest woman in the world. And even though I’m super hot, my sister is even hotter…」
「Yeah, yeah, sure. She’s beautiful, knows magic, and can cook. I’ve heard it all.」
She told that prideful story over and over again in the dungeon.
「But instead of me telling you, you can tell me now.」
「W…what? You wanna know my three sizes or something? You pervert.」
「I don’t have to ask…they’re just 28 A-cup, 28, and 28.」
Whoosh, I dodged to the side as a stone flew by. It hit the tree behind me and pieces of rock and tree flew everywhere.
Instead of responding to her, I learned that simply dodging first is best.
「The reason you took this journey. Whoever left the dungeon first wins. We both left the same time, so talk a little.」
「Now that you mention it, we did have that competition.」
Redhead instantly thought back and confirmed the fact.
「So what then. I told you that I’d tell you what you want.」
「Don’t get so defensive. …If I need help with something, can you lend a hand? I’ll return the favor way more later.」
From tomorrow, we both would continue on our journeys.
Days like that, you need some help somehow.
There was something regrettable in us splitting up. If she had a purpose to her journey, maybe I could help her a little, I thought.
In that stupid conversation, it seemed like time spent just talking to a friend in the old world, a little bit.
「What? You lonely? You’re talking just like a little rabbit.」
「Fff…dammit, why are you mocking someone’s good intentions?!」
Redhead had a impertinent little smile on her face.
I felt my face flush with the fact. I couldn’t say what I really wanted to say.
(Dammit, all this blood to the face!)
I thought she wouldn’t notice, but she was the type that would never let a person’s weak point pass by without a comment.
「Hee hee hee, your face is getting red. I guess I WAS right, wee hee-hee!」
「Daaaammit, don’t try to fool me with your gloating, just answer me!」
Fwip, from my toes to my head something cold hit me.
「Hee, I haven’t even asked your name yet. I guess this is a dumb story since we’ve been together so long, but what IS your name?」
「Kaito…My name is Kaito.」
Redhead got up and looked up at the stars.
She hadn’t made any strange moves.
No feeling of animosity, no feeling of hostility, just Redhead being stoic.
However, I still was a little scared of her.
No, not really fear, just a feeling of regret that I had seen something I shouldn’t have, or something.
「I see…Kaito…Nice name.」
Nothing different from the normal.
…however, as I doubted, there was something dark that I saw from her in the last few days, something from Redhead.
Dark, dark, dark.
If shadows are a place where there is no light, it’s not a superficial thing, but a darkness that eats up the light.
「I don’t know what kind of help you can provide. But, it’s impossible. There’s no way you can help, Kaito.」
「W…why not? I can help here and there, any way.」
「No, no you can’t. Kaito, you can’t help in this way. If you could, no matter what help you could give, I wouldn’t ask you to do it, no matter what.」
She turned to me again, and smiled.
However, even though there was a smile on her face, it wasn’t real.
The reason why I felt so was unknown. But, I knew what I am feeling about it was real.
No matter how much I reached out to help, there was nowhere to grab onto or to go to.
That feeling about being able to help.
「You don’t know, right? The feeling of something burning in your belly, the throbbing of your arms and legs so badly that they might be split into a million pieces, that darkness you can’t get rid of no matter how much you scream and fight it.」
As she said that, her face turned to me, she had a gentle smile as though she might begin to cry.
Sadness, regret, and more than that…being filled with anger so much that it radiated a chilling cold.
「My goal is revenge. I have someone I must kill. Someone that I can never forgive. No matter what, no matter the event, I have someone I must cut limb from limb with my own hand.」
I repeated the word I heard without thinking, as it seeped into that back of my mind.
「Yeah, not just kill. Just for myself, I’ve decided to do so even if I have to walk through hell itself. While they’re alive, I’ll pluck out their eyeballs, peel off their skin little by little, cut off the ends of their hands and feet, burn their back with a red hot sword, and make them feel so much pain and anguish that I can taste it. … Listen to their cries for mercy while at that second, I crush their heart with my own hand…it’s so good, so good I can’t stand it. I yearn for it every second of my life, hah hah, ahah hah, ahah hah hah hah!」
I felt like being beaten over the head with an unseen club.
She looked the most glamorous as she let her emotions loose to the point of looking drunk, with her ecstatic expression undulating across her mouth, making you feel like you were being dunked in a tub of ice cold water to the point of drowning.
Then Redhead replaced that expression with her usual hiding smile.
『Stop, revenge won’t make you happy.』
In opposition, those words that I had heard before from somewhere suddenly floated in my mind and were about to be issued from my mouth.
However, as if to stop those cheap sounding words from leaving, Redhead suddenly covered my lips with her pointer finger.
The finger felt very cold, so much so that it was distinct.
「Were the last few days with me fun, you’re saying? So, Kaito…」
She stood in front of me, with a wide smile that didn’t move.
She had put in place that smile that hid everying, but even so she couldn’t hide that wild, crazy black-red expression that I saw.
It would seem almost bewitching to anyone else.
「Don’t touch me, get close to me, or try to know me. This distance is fine, we have to have this distance. Ignorance is bliss is certainly a belief that will help you get ahead in a world like this.」
Redhead closed her eyes, and shook her head.
I couldn’t say or do a thing, like I was chained up.
All I could do is remain silent in front of her flat refusal.
From that, the tired Redhead went straight to sleep, and all I could is watch her until I finally fell asleep.
I couldn’t sleep well, and in that shallow sleep, the sky soon became bright as I awoke.
「Fyew, let’s get this morning over quickly, okay.」
「What’s going to be quick about it? Get a pot ready.」
Redhead simply acted as if nothing special had happened the day before.
Because of that, I was able to act normal in front of her as well.
After that, it was just about the time we were to part when it happened.
「I found you! Where did you go?!」
Wapsheewwww, suddenly appearing with great force was a bright red scaled dragon, with one female rider.
A dragon, dragon-species.
You know, one of those things known to be a ruler of this world.
「It’s okay, Kaito. It’s been a while, Glenn…and sister!」
I lowered my danger level a bit, and Redhead went out to meet her.
「Don’t call me sister! You’re always causing trouble! We’re always worried about you!」
From a high place, the woman jumped off of Kaenryu’s back and onto the ground.
This woman with long blond hair pulled up high stood on the ground with an angry expression with her eyes open in annoyance.
Suddenly something that made me gasp in surprise occurred right in front go me.
That dragon that had just shown up with so much force was now purring beside her like a kitten.
The massive adult dragon had now become something like a dragon puppy, jumping and sticking its head out to Redhead.
「Hey there, okay, good boy. You’re such a softie.」
Redhead was licked on the cheek by this dragon puppy as she went on tickling the dragon.
It was unreal to see such a ferocious creature like a dragon to be so tamed before a bunch of humans.
「What’s with the carefree face, huh? I’ll lecture you later, but I won’t just forgive you this time so you better get ready!」
「Ah, sister?! Wait a second, it wasn’t my fault this happened!」
「No need for excuses. I’m not going to let you eat until I have a proper talk with you.」
Nooooooooooooooo, Redhead said with a pained voice.
She made a long sigh, turned, and then went back to petting the dragon puppy.
「So, then are we going to go? Glenn, you let me ride, okay?」
The dragon puppy made a sort of response to Redhead’s lines and then stood up and looked like the giant dragon Kaenryu again.
「Okay, Let’s go!」
The blond woman got on the dragon’s back, and called Redhead up.
「Okay, got to go. If there’s fate between us, I’ll see you again!」
Redhead said to me, as I choked down my words.
I knew this was coming, but there was an unknown reason and impatience for an answer burning inside of me.
I noticed that I had spoken unconsciously.
「Yeah, what is it?」
As Redhead turned around, I had nothing to say back.
There was no reason for me to call out to them, but then I remembered the conversation we had previously.
「Name, tell me your name, Redhead. Are you really going to leave me without telling me your name?」
What I remembered was her saying『I…I don’t teach my name to other low-born people!』in an uncooperative way.
However, this time her response was quite different.
「Hm…well, I guess I should at least tell you.」
After a bit of a pause, Redhead said.
「W…wait a second, that’s dangerous!」
「It’s okay sis. I should at least return the favor. And he can’t do anything with my name.」
She stopped her sister’s protests, and Redhead turned to me with an air of dignity.
「Leticia. My name is Leticia. Super pretty name, right?」
After saying that, she laughed to herself.
It was that same mischievous laugh I had heard several times over the last few days.
「Okay, Kaito, be careful that you don’t go bald!」
「I told you I’m not bald!」
「Heh heh, see you, dumbass!」
「Get lost then, you cowardly wench!」
The same angry responses, as Leticia left on her dragon, bounding away.
She continued on her journey without once looking back.
I ruminated over what had happened the last few days.
『I don’t have sympathy for you! I…I’m just doing the best I can! Just doing my best!』
『Heh heh, if you’re going to speak that sharply to me you must think you’re something hot, no, I can’t imitate that. Hee hee hee』
『Well, you’ve got a crap eating grin I haven’t seen lately. As far as I’ve lived, I haven’t seen someone crank all my gears like that before. Maybe instead of being an adventurer you should retire and become a comedian instead, maybe?』
Ah, dammit…might as well admit it.
It was fun.
I was so pissed I wanted to scream.
That stupid, kid-like dungeon, I had so many complaints over the time I had in that stinking place.
Surprise, happiness, mischief, traded insults, traded laughs.
I had totally forgotten. Eating together was fun.
Talking with someone, it all seemed so fun now.
That’s why it was fun making her food just to talk to her and eat.
…it really was fun.
「Why revenge? Even with all that revenge talk, you still had fun and laughed, right?」
No one heard the words I said, they just floated in the air like soap bubbles and burst away.
Can’t wait to see more? Want to show your support? CLICK HERE to be a patron and get additional chapters ahead of time!