Translator: Kell | Editor: Weasalopes
Moving to a New Home
The next day, Lavia and Paula brought Hikaru along to their new place. It was located in a quiet neighborhood with no shops in sight. Despite being in the middle of the city, there were trees around. The house was called a garden mansion, one of only thirty-one in the whole country of Dream Maker.
「Wow, it’s surprisingly spacious.」Hikaru said.
They entered a small gate and found themselves on a winding, paved path lined by shrubs on both sides that went all the way deeper. The atmosphere reminded Hikaru of a park in Japan, although the different plants bothered him a little.
The house itself was a bungalow with six rooms, one of them for storage. Compared to the mansion Doriachi was staying in, this one had a more Japanese style to it.
「That’s a pretty yard.」
There was nothing inside the room, and the wooden floor looked bleak with no mats on it, but the balcony had a spectacular view from it. There was a lawn out front, and a pond at the back. Shrubs grew here and there and beyond them stood trees with wide branches, their leaves blocking the streets from being seen.
「This is just like Disneyland.」
It was still, as though they were in a different dimension in the middle of the city.
「Do you like it? We wanted to get more of the interior done before we moved, but we don’t have much of a choice now. We have to cook for ourselves now, and the small kitchen in the apartment won’t cut it.」
They had to cook their own if they wanted to stay away from dishes made from animals contaminated by dragon stones. For ingredients, Hikaru would have to bring Drake with him to figure out which animals stunk and which ones didn’t.
At first, Lavia couldn’t do any sort of chore at all, but since Paula joined the party, she’d learned a little. Right now, she could cook one or two dishes.
「I must say, I didn’t expect the house to look like this. I did think about getting a house in this world one day.」
「What kind were you thinking about getting?」
「Hmm, a mansion I guess.」
「This style of house is really unusual, huh?」
As Hikaru and Lavia were talking, Paula, who was looking around the house with Drake, joined them.
「All right, then. Let’s talk about what we need to do from now on.」
They sat down and started the first Grand Dream Rescue Meeting.
Nights were completely still in Dream Maker. Yet the area around the residence was even quieter. There was no sound, save for the occasional rustling of the leaves by the wind.
It was past one in the morning, and the lights were out. Four men gathered under a large tree that blocked the light from the moon. They wore dark clothes and hood, with masks covering their mouth, allowing them to blend in with the darkness.
They entered the grounds using a grappling hook hurled over the wall, and landed behind some bushes, blocking them from sight. In front of them was a pond. With the trees blocking the moonlight, one wrong step and they would fall into the water. But it didn’t matter. They already had the ground’s blueprint etched into their minds.
The men dashed without a sound and made it to the back door of the house. One man turned the knob only to learn that it was locked. Another took out a thin knife and inserted it through the door’s gap. It clicked open.
There was no response from inside.
『They don’t even notice this level of noise. I guess it’s true what they say. These people from Primeval are nothing but apes. All right, get ready.』
『Kill on sight. Don’t hesitate.』
They produced daggers from their pockets, their blades lacquered black. Only the tip glinted silver in the darkness.
The man giving orders, their leader, slipped into the house first. As he beckoned with his hand, the next man followed.
They were in a kitchen with a dirt floor. It was too dark to see what was ahead, so they had to proceed slowly and with caution.
『Be careful. Don’t kick a bucket or something now.』the man on the lead whispered in a voice that only those very close could hear.『Stairs up ahead.』
As he planted his foot on the first step, he noticed something. He didn’t get any affirmation from his men. It was their rule to give even a tiny response every time. Yet he didn’t hear anything.
As he turned over his shoulder, a hard object hit him hard, knocking him out cold on the spot. All of a sudden, the room turned bright.
「Is it over?」 Lavia asked.
「There really were intruders!」 Paula exclaimed.
Lavia and Paula stood there with lanterns in hand. Hikaru nodded, blinking repeatedly from the sudden brightness.
「Yeah, we’re good. This is the fourth guy. Looks like they didn’t think the attackers would get attacked themselves.」
Hikaru’s punch knocked out two men outside and two inside. Since he snuck behind them without getting noticed, his punches had the Assassination buff. Each time he knocked one down, he grabbed their hand so his Group Obfuscation could take effect. The last one, however, he struck without any Stealth, producing a dull sound.
「I didn’t know punching people hurt so much… Can you please heal my hand, Paula?」
Hikaru wore a glove, but he barely had any experience in barehanded combat. He had to bear with the pain, as he needed the men alive.
「Will there be more attacks?」 Lavia asked.
「I’m not sure. I doubt there will be more, but I’ll stay up all night just to be safe.」
Hikaru constantly thought about the possibility of intruders raiding their house. Unlike the apartment they were in before, this place was conspicuous, and security was lax. He expected some people to send spies to eavesdrop or try to find out what they really looked like, but this was different.
「I didn’t expect they’d actually try to kill us.」 Hikaru muttered as he eyed the black metal on the floor.
「Now, then. How do we make them pay for this?」
「You have that sinister smile on you again, Hikaru.」Lavia said with exasperation.「You’re actually enjoying this, aren’t you?」
「I am deeply sorry for what happened!」 Duinkler apologized, bowing deeply.
The next day in Hikaru’s new home, four men, tied up, blindfolded, and gagged, lay in the corner of a room.
「Did you send these guys?」 Hikaru asked.
「I-I didn’t! Please believe me! Only fools would even think about incurring your wrath!」
「Oh, you really think so?」
「Of course! I say that from the bottom of my heart!」
Duinkler quickly raised his head and placed his hand on his chest, sweat beading on his face. After receiving news of intruders in Silver Face’s new home, Duinkler rushed to his place first thing in the morning. Oblivious to what they were saying, Duinkler’s followers looked baffled as they watched their boss be so desperate.
The citizens probably thought it strange for Duinkler to regard Silver Face so highly. That would indicate just how powerful a man Duinkler was within their society.
「Then why are you apologizing?」
「First, as a citizen of this country, I would like to apologize for the foolish actions of my fellow countrymen. Also…」
Duinkler hesitated to say his next words.
「I will deploy guards to this place. They will work in rotation and be on the lookout at all times. Your safety is our maximum priority—」
Hikaru raised his hand to cut the man short.
「That’s not what you meant to say, right?」
Duinkler’s face was covered in a cold sweat. Hikaru didn’t find it fun making a plump man sweat, but he had to say it.
「Someone leaked info about us moving here. Most likely one of your men. And they’re connected to the traitor. Am I wrong?」
「It is possible.」
「Look into it.」
「Of course. So in the meantime, I’ll provide security—」
「I can’t really trust you, so I asked someone else.」
Hikaru called a man in.
「L-Lord Silver Face! Surely you aren’t serious!」
Shock dawned on Duinkler’s face as he saw the man Hikaru hired.
「The army will be in charge of this place’s security.」 Grucel, the leader of the clan governing the army, said with a sullen expression.