Translator: “Pink Tea” Editor: ”Ryunakama”
Day 54 – Morning, White Weirdo Inn.
I got a summon. Well, today I was supposed to go with some random party, and it’s not like I have anything to do while I’m tagging along? I mean, everyone is around 30th floor at the moment, so there is no danger, and nothing for me to do anyway, so there is indeed no problem with me not coming at all, but I’m absolutely sure that they are planning to gather lots of magic stones and make a ton of money on their own to rub it in my face? This must be it, the revolution is finally coming, the magnate is about to be replaced! However, the previous night, I succeeded in mass production of anklets, so the would-be-magnates are about to be ripped off instead!
Now, fast travel to the fake dungeon, I just went there the day before yesterday, and now I have to waste my time going there again. I’m pretty sure that by now there is nothing to buy up from the neighboring town? There should be a shortage of all goods by now.
Meripapa-san seems to be waiting there, so I thought I’d have the Dungeon Rulers Duo go with the pres and the others, but they refused, so they are currently following me. We are passing them as a skeleton and a slime that were tamed by me, so this shouldn’t be a problem, but during days off she sometimes goes out in casual clothes, so there is a chance that she was seen. Is there some sort of report one has to submit in case of a change from skeleton to a human of unknown race?
Well, it should be fine anyway. For some reason, it seems like I’m getting a pretty favorable treatment? The adventurers don’t have to pay taxes since the money they receive from selling magic stones comes with taxes withheld, but I got a 『Tax-free trading permit?』 even though I’m not even an adventurer. That’s why 10% is taken by the adventurers guild, but my dividends from the general store and the weapon store are not taxed at all. That’s why it should work out somehow even if Armored Pres-san is a human now, and it’s not like we are lying about her being tamed? Wait, in that case, are the Bitches under the tax exemptions as well? They are the Bitches, you know? They might even bite?
But even so, people still might get mad if I were to say 『Here is a dungeon master, and here is the dungeon emperor』, they are ex anyway, so let’s just keep quiet about this. The guards at the gates also didn’t say anything, patting Slime-san as if it’s nothing, so there is no problem, in other words, I did nothing wrong. Alright, if they say something let’s blame the guards.
「Ooh, Haruka-kun. Sorry for calling you all the way out here. I’ll say this beforehand, but it’s Mellotosam Shim Omui, Lord of Omui, alright? Not Meripapa-san? You might even call me simply Mellotosam, but please remember it already. Also, the place where you are currently residing is the city of Omui, okay? There is the sign for it as well, I ordered them to make it bigger, didn’t you see it?」
Meripapa-san came to greet me. In other words, another geezer, isn’t this amazing?! The terrifying middle-aged-man ratio of this world? I’m sure if checked, 80% of this world’s population would turn out to be middle-aged men. I mean, 80% of the people I meet are middle-aged men, so that must be the case? There is a problem of puzzling birthrates and unexplainable advancement in age? Could it be that they are actually simply spawning somewhere? Alright, let’s destroy that spawn spot. There is probably a Geezer King sitting at the lowest floor as well. Can’t expect a decent drop though, it probably will be something like 『Ring of Elderly’s Body Odor』, can’t blame my Affection Rating if it decides to run away, I mean, I’ll do the same.
「Eerhm? I came since I was called, are we going to destroy the neighboring town? Or the kingdom? Or maybe middle-aged men? Yeah, I also agree that it might be better to annihilate middle-aged men? Burn to ashes? Crush to dust? I hope there won’t be any cloth destruction involved? I really do?」
「Please don’t go too far with bullying middle-aged men? Even our troops are afraid. Also, don’t look my way when talking about burning middle-aged men, okay? And there is no need to crush anyone. And we are also not destroying the neighbors, and please don’t casually destroy the kingdom along the way?」
Looks like that’s not the case? Then why was I called? Did they get the wrong person? Which reminds me, as I have heard from pres and the others, the lord of this region greeted them with 『I’d like to express my gratitude to the benefactor of our city, nice to meet you~』? He was also waving his hand, shouting 『Heey, Haruka-kun!』, could it be that Meripapa-san got fired? Downsized? Corporate restructuring? Which means that we are now fellow unemployed? No, I don’t need any fellowship with geezers. And it seems they are about to be obliterated anyway?
That person, it’s that aide. This aide most likely wasn’t affected by downsizing. I mean, I’ve never seen anyone else do any work around here?
「Haruka-sama, thank you for coming, we are sorry for calling you despite how busy you are. This way, please.」
「Eh? I went to pick him up, but you aren’t going to invite me as well? You are just going to leave, abandoning your lord here? If any of the retainers saw this, they’d cry, so stop with this, or rather, aren’t you a retainer as well?!」
So he did get fired, after all, even the aide seems to have abandoned him. Good grief, this world is also filled with monsters. Wait, but this is still way more peaceful than a drama between daughter-in-law and mother-in-law! Simply beating monsters is way more wholesome! Really, if they are so worried about keeping things family-friendly, then instead of censoring murder scenes in manga and games they should’ve started with removing them from suspense dramas in the public broadcast? How about a detective where a maid stops a murder from happening instead of becoming a witness? Isn’t that nice? A peerless maid?
「Please, have a seat.」
「What about me? What about a seat for me? Aren’t you my retainer?」
Is this it? Since he was fired there is now no place for him to sit? Couldn’t they leave him at least a place by the window? Let’s introduce a side job to Merimeri-san.
And the reason I was called seems to be that the kingdom’s envoy, who came to the neighboring town, is gathering numerous adventurers. I guess she wants to challenge the fake dungeon before the talks.
As long as the fake dungeon exists the negotiations are bound to go overwhelmingly in the frontier’s favor. Were they to enter talks as things are at this moment, the kingdom might not be able to push through any of its own conditions. However, if the fake dungeon is gone then military power also will become a part of the conversation. For the kingdom to invade they first will have to get rid of the fake dungeon.
However, a conventional army is not suited for fighting in dungeons. Taking formations with large numbers and moving under orders in a confined space of dungeons will turn soldiers into mere targets. Adventurers, capable of adapting and improvising, are much better suited for challenging dungeons.
In the first place, armies specialize in fighting people, while adventurers in fighting monsters, being suddenly forced into combat in a dungeon without any previous experience or knowledge is way too tough.
Wait, why did I alone have to have a dungeon emperor as an opponent for my first dungeon battle despite having no knowledge or experience as well? I didn’t have even a chance to get any of that and started immediately from the final battle? Yeah, they are clearly too soft on the soldiers, they should throw them into some hole! Although I suspect they won’t be able to come back after being thrown into a 100 floors deep hole, but it’s unfair that I’m the only one who had to go through that. They are middle-aged dudes anyway, so who cares, throw them in, throw them in! Just throw them until the Geezer King on the 100th floor gets crushed? Well, no, since it’s a fake dungeon, there are no floors and no boss of middle-aged men as well? I mean, I don’t want to tame any old-timers, so that’s to be expected.
「Heeey! Are you listening? I know you never listen, but I want you to at least acknowledge my existence. Can I at least get a seat? Why is the lord the only one who has to keep standing? I’m not going to wander off on my own again, so can’t you get a seat for me as well? Standing all on my own feels pretty depressing, you know? 」
So high-ranking adventurers and bands of mercs are being gathered in that town.
Rather than trying to defend, burning it down will be a lot faster? I mean, I’m pretty sure every single one of them is a smelly dude? I do think that purging them with fire would be better, but apparently, I can’t do that? No, I don’t need any Flat Gaze from old men, okay? I’ll burn your eyes out? No one asked for that, seriously!
「Actually, I don’t think anything will come out of it? That fake dungeon is not a dungeon, so it can’t be killed, and there is no point in a bunch of adventurers managing to pass through it? I don’t think soldiers, or rather, an army, can get through it? It will be pretty graphic, in a different sort of way. There is no demand for old men’s nudity, you know? Now that I think of it, maybe I should burn them after all? Before it’s too late?」
There shouldn’t be a single civilian left in the neighboring town by now. Can’t say for sure until Stalker Girl’s clansmen return with a report, but everyday goods are completely gone from that town. Since I bought up everything left as the stores left the town which progressively turns into ruins there is no way anyone can live there. The town has fallen.
The Stalker clan moved people to the frontier, while the town and all of its neighboring settlements had all of the supplies and goods completely bought up, that is in addition to active obstruction of long-distance transportation, which delays supply even more. Even officials and soldiers have fled, it can’t even be called a town anymore.
I mean, if I were to burn the town, or attack their lord, or kill soldiers, it would lead to problems with the kingdom’s law, which will lead to unfavorable conditions for the frontier if they try to cover up for me. That’s why I did none of that? However, no one told me that I can’t kill the economy and logistics, and there is not a word on it in the kingdom’s laws. I can’t kill the townsfolk, which is natural, but I also can’t kill soldiers or even the lord, so I chose to kill the town itself. That place is already dead.
Since it was only a question of sooner or later, this is not an issue. After all, that town doesn’t have any other sources of income aside from imposing taxes on the magic stone’s traffic. The ones to suffer from its slow death would’ve been the ones at the bottom, weak and poor, that’s why by killing it right away we could take all of them into the frontier. After all, we severely lack manpower.
Besides, it’s not like even high-ranking adventurers have any chance of passing through that fake dungeon. That place is too much? Who the hell came up with such a thing! Just when you’d think you found an exit, there is a slide, which will send you all the way back to the entrance. Their spirit of adventure is going to break even before their hearts! If an adventurer were to lose their spirit of adventure, how are they supposed to adventure? They’ll end up as simple unemployed? I properly waxed the slides before leaving, so they are incredibly slippery. Armored Pres-san and Slime-san really liked it, sliding sixteen times, so it was already quite late when we went back. Well, they seemed to have fun, so it’s fine though.