Volume 4 Chapter 9
「Thank you very much」
After breakfast the next day I took them back to the city. I dropped them off at the city gate to prevent unnecessary commotion that might be caused by the carriage drawn by Kokuyou.
「I’ll be holed up in the forest for the few days, take care of the city, okay」
「Yes, please be careful …….」
Liese looked a bit forlorn as she answered.
I pulled on the reins and Kokuyou took off at top speed back to the forest.
I went to get my gear at the guild house and asked Ferris to watch over the house.
「I’m going hunting; I’ll be back in the evening」
「Un……. Take care」
Holding the Buster Sword in my hand, I walk out into the forest and use Search to locate monsters.
I chose to concentrate first on the areas where the monsters’ numbers were greater.
The monsters were close to overrunning the forest at any moment. I found myself surrounded on all sides, with only my sword, which was not enough. I gathered some magic in my other hand and shot attack magic at the monsters.
The said monsters ranged from goblins to orcs, ogres, and forest wolves.
Mixed in, but with few numbers were the Earth Dragons. Most of the monsters were C-rank and lower.
I got tired of their numbers and focused on unleashing large-scale magic in succession. I stored the fallen monsters in Dimensional Storage to the point where I had 99 of each monster filling more item slots.
「With this much materials, the city might go bankrupt……..」
My mind drifted to Liese and Blythe, who were coordinating the city.
I spent my days in the forest continuously locating and subjugating monsters as they came.
I ended up feeling overwhelmed mentally with the routine, but being able to rest at the guildhouse at the end of the day and having Ferris to talk to was recuperative in a sense.
Even with the prospect of grinding levels, doing the same thing repeatedly day in and day out can take a toll on a person. For seven days, my routine was pretty much the same: search and subjugate monsters.
On the tenth day, I decided to return to the city.
I felt I had taken care of a significant number of monsters. I didn’t risk eradicating them completely for the sake of the other adventurers’ welfare.
I asked Ferris to go back into the Spirit Stone and placed the guild house back into Dimensional Storage after I was satisfied I was done eliminating monsters on the path leading to the dungeon.
I was bathed in brilliant sunlight as I rode back to the city after being cooped up in the dark forest for what seemed like an eternity. It felt good.
However, as we approached the city, we came across a field full of soldiers.
There were about one hundred of them. They had a number of tents erected to guard the city. When they saw Kokuyou, they started blowing their whistles and moved in a hurried fashion.
Did they mistake him for a monster…….?
Soldiers with spears stood in the road with soldiers with a bow lining behind them.
Not that we’re in any danger, but best to explain myself.
I stopped Kokuyou and got down. I could see some soldiers’ vigilance relax, perhaps because they could see me.
A few soldiers approached us with caution.
「May we have your name? Why were you in the forest? No one is supposed to go in there」
「My name is Touya. I was thinning out the monsters at the request of Leiselotte-ojousama, the acting lord of this city「
When they heard this, the soldiers fell on their knees on the spot and bowed their heads.
「……..We apologize, you must be Marquis Kisaragi. Please follow me」
If they know me, then they must be soldiers from the Capital.
「Ah, yes. Thank you」
The soldier led the way into the largest tent, where Princess Charlotte the vice knight commander Altria, and the first court mage Natalie and Lieselotte were gathering. Myra is also attending Liese.
And all of them were dressed for battle.
「…….. Why are you all here…….?」
Char, Al and Natalie’s expressions were firm. They seem to be overtly angry.
「……. More importantly, Touya-sama, don’t you have anything to us…….? You disappeared at a critical time from the Imperial Capital and came to this city」
「That’s right, Touya-san. When Char found out that you were in this city, she ran off without disregarding His Majesty’s word, and of course Natalie-san didn’t hesitate to accompany her……. The Imperial Capital is in a weakened state right now! Do you have any idea how difficult it was for me to be here?!」
I immediately get lectured by Char followed by Al. What can I tell them? I did tell Gaulus where I was going in advance and left a letter for the three of them. And in addition I did instruct a servant to deliver the letter only after I had left the Imperial Capital.
I was feeling tired because of all the unending meetings from the nobles and their constant badgering trying to fix me up with their daughters. I wanted to relax, that’s why I didn’t tell them where I was going.
If I say that it would only make things worse, won’t it——-?
「Sorry……. The nobles were constantly proposing matchmaking…… Despite the fact that I don’t need any of that, every single day they came……. So I thought I’d get out of the Capital and take a break…….. But I ended up getting caught up in this whole thing. I’m tired, I’d like to eat something sweet…… but I’m not sure if I can even eat it」
It’s the only way I know how to get them in a good mood! I placed a number of sweet treats on the table that they were sitting around.
Three kinds of cake: shortcake, cheesecake, and chocolate cake will set their mood right!
On cue their expressions changed.
Liese was taken aback by the sudden mood swing from the three.
I pulled out forks enough for everyone and set them in front of them.
「You can eat as much as you want!」
I put my hand on the table and bowed.
The first person to pick up a fork was Natalie.
「Mhohoho! It’s been some time I’ve had any sweets! I’m sure you both understand」
Natalie picked up the shortcake in front of her, cut it into pieces with her fork and brought it to her mouth.
「This is it! It’s delicious as ever…….. What’s wrong? What’s wrong with you two? If you don’t want them, I’ll…….」
「Okay! I’ll have some too!」
Char and Al who were hesitant at first, also gave into temptation and picked up their forks and each took a piece of cake and popped it into their mouths.
「You can eat it too, Liese」
「Oh, yes. Let’s see…….」
She picked a fork and pulled a plate of cake towards herself. She stared at the bite-sized cake she had cut with her fork and meditated as she stared at it as if in doubt. And with one swift move she gobbled it up.
In an instant her face mellowed.
「What is this!? This is sweeter than anything I’ve ever tasted」
Liese began to eat with much gusto after the first taste.
I called out to Myra, who was looking at the other girls with a tinge of envy.
「Here, Myra. There’s still some left」
I pointed to the empty seat and placed a cake and fork in front of it.
「I’m just an attendant」
She replied, however, she reluctantly sat down and picked up the cake and placed the small piece on her fork while paying attention to the blissful Liese and the other girls with a sideways glance who were seated on the same table.
Much like Liese, her tense face quickly went away immediately after putting the piece of the cake in her mouth.
「…… It’s delicious. This is the first time eating something like this. ……」
Myra clutched on the plate in front of her, as if someone would take it from her, and began to savour the treat.
…….. Okay, they should all be fine now. After this, I might be in the clear.
I activated the magical tool in the corner of the tent, boiled some water, and prepared tea for everyone. In this situation, I was more of a servant than a noble. It doesn’t matter, so long as the three of them are pacified.
I poured the tea into cups and served it to them, taking care not to interrupt them.
Now all I have to do is to get out of there while I still can. I slowly made my way to the tent exit in the attempt to disappear.
「—- Touya-sama? You’re not trying to escape, are you?
I stopped amidst my attempt to flee due to the question from Char that came from behind me. I cautiously turned around to find the gazes of five of them on me —– they had finished eating their cakes.
「Touya-sama, sit down for a moment. We have much to talk about. I’ve heard a lot from Leiselotte-sama, but I think you also need to explain yourself, don’t you think?」
When I first met Char, she was so modest and docile. But now she was more upfront now that she was embracing her role as the imperial princess. She looked imposing as she looked at me with a smile.
I let out one short sigh, and sat down without resistance.
I threw myself on the bed in the guildhouse house, tired. Ahh, and I tried not to think about what had happened earlier.
I had to explain to Char and the other two girls everything that had happened up to this point and in this city. When I tried to give them an abridged version and try to censor some of the stuff, Liese was there to correct my mistake.
Since she and Myra are one of the longest acquaintances I have in this city.
Char and Liese were in synch and began to bombard me with questions, as expected of one from the royal family and a noblewoman.
After being made to explain everything, I headed to the guild to give another report. And because they didn’t want to leave my side, I had everyone accompany me to the guild.
Liese was dressed in her adventurer costume, and was fine, but Char was wearing dress armour and Al was wearing the Kingsquard armour.
In short – they couldn’t help but stand out.
The amount of murderous stares I received when I entered the guild with five women in tow was immeasurable. I found Maia at the counter, and she immediately led me to the reception room.
Blythe came rushing afterwards, but when he found Char and the other two girls; he kneeled down on the spot and bowed his head.
He was obviously unprepared to find the princess with me.
This was supposed to be a meeting to discuss the state of the monsters in the forest after all.
When I read out the number of monsters that I had in Dimensional Storage, Blythe and Liese’s faces looked troubled. As for Char, Al and Natalie, they simply looked dumbfounded.
The number of monsters that I had defeated and stored away was over a hundred. The guild and the lord were initially supposed to split the amount of monster materials they each purchase, but Liese chose to take more.
「…….. If the guild takes too many, it will put pressure on the city’s finances……..」
There were tons of D-ranked Orcs, and over 100 of B-ranked monsters. The reward for a B-ranked monster alone would be enough to sustain an average person for about three months.
The total amount they would have had to spend would have been a tremendous amount of money.
But thankfully Char was present. I gave her a look and nodded.
「What you can’t take. I’ll bring back with me to the castle」
With this, Char, Blythe, and Liese looked relieved. However, they seem to forget that more materials will be needed in preparation to subjugate the dungeon.
The monsters will not stop pouring out unless the dungeon is conquered, which is by removing the dungeon core located on the lowest floor, the guardian’s room, out of the dungeon. The core controls the entire dungeon, supplies it with magic and produces the monsters.
However, in the guardian’s room, as the name implies, means there is a monster, a guardian, protecting the dungeon core. And it is necessary to defeat it.
This dungeon reminds me of a dungeon I once conquered in the game while playing as a character from Generate Kingdom. If this is the same kind, then I might know what kind of monster guards the core.