Translator: “Pink Tea” Editor: ”Ryunakama”
Since we could fight without a problem, we proceed to the 5th floor.
The 5th floor that we reached through Dungeon Walk was the same as the first floor.
We proceed through it, but for now, there are no signs on the guardian.
Shugor walked next to me with a smile on his face.
「As expected of Rude-san. You were a good match for the fieldzaurus……」
「That much is, you know. If I couldn’t do even that, then what’s the point of me being here.」
「No no…… It’s not 『even that』. Normally, no one would compete with a monster head-on, considering our huge size difference. I heard stories, but I never imagined it to be like this.」
「Yes. It’s my first time seeing a person like Rude-san, who would fight in such a foolishly straightforward way.」
He laughed as if mocking me.
Hearing Shugor, Luna, and the twins tilted their heads.
「……Master is not normal?」
「Since Rude is using a shield meant for blocking, isn’t that normal?」
「Isn’t that how big shields are used?」
As the girls looked slightly doubtful, Shugor shook his head.
「Well, I expected this. Or rather, Lilia-san and Lily-san, you saw me tanking, right?」
「Miserably running around.」
「Nothing but dodging. How about blocking with your shield or sword for once?」
「No! That is the correct way! Humans and monsters have different physiques. So humans fight while using their heads. Evade, evade! Use it to irritate the enemy! That’s how a tank is supposed to be.」
Shugor said, shrugging his shoulders.
There aren’t many tanks among adventurers.
Probably about 10 percent? And from what I’ve heard, all of them are evasion-focused.
Kygras also was saying the same.
Other tanks are evading attacks. So why aren’t you dodging? Saying that it creates additional expenses.
Well, I do dodge what I can, but ultimately, I don’t have speed.
And there is no way you would display your real ability by doing what you aren’t used to.
「Ordinary tanks evade attacks to some extent, but Master is sticking to the enemy.」
「Yup. That way it is easier to keep their aggro on me.」
「Luna-san, don’t listen to him. Aaah, Nin-sama, please say something as well!」
「Why? That is what is normal for Rude.」
Shugor dropped his shoulder and started walking.
「Which reminds me, the new girls that Kygras took, are they strong?」
There were two completely unfamiliar faces.
So it got me a bit curious.
「Well, you could say that. But compared to the two girls that he invited earlier…… They would be weaker. If I remember correctly…… They were called Sasin and Sar, right?」
「……So those girls left.」
Nin muttered under her breath. A bit sadly.
Sasin and Sar…… The members that joined in my place.
「Yes. They were completely terrified of the hero and eventually left, saying that their skills are still insufficient. And the guild didn’t quite like that. Apparently, they were so scared that they took a break from adventuring for a while.」
「……I see. I actually called out to them, but there was a lot going on.」
「Seems so. I also only heard this from the people of the guild, so I don’t know the details that well myself.」
Shugor shrugged his shoulders.
Nin cast a short glance at the twins.
「Shouldn’t you know the details better, Lilia, Lily?」
But they looked like they didn’t even hear her.
「Nee-san, here. Your apple.」
「My, an apple! When did you manage to buy it?」
「Fufu. I wanted to surprise you, so I secretly bought it.」
「……Thank you, Lily. Then, let’s eat it together.」
「No way. This is Nee-san’s share……」
「We will eat it together.」
The sisters were happily having a meal.
Nin’s face stiffened, but she refrained from approaching them.
They have their own world.
It’s better not to disturb them.
Previously, we actually did that, and they snapped at us.
「……The guardian that Kygras’ party couldn’t beat, huh. Isn’t his offensive power is quite high?」
「That I ought to admit. But, during his previous raid attempt, he couldn’t use even that properly.」
「It was the same with me. Or rather, the moment he uses that skill, monsters turn to him, so I’d even prefer if he restrained more in using it. Was it okay with you, Rude-san?」
「It never bothered me.」
「Which means that Rude’s Taunt is just that strong. Rude, aren’t you quite good at pissing others off?」
Nin said in a bit of a teasing tone.
While mildly irritated by that, I indeed have to admit that there are a lot of tricks to it.
「Other than Taunt, there are plenty of factors that can get the enemy’s aggro. For example, attacking the same place over and over, attacking the opponent when they try to disengage…… Such little things can actually be pretty enraging.」
The same goes for humans.
For example, were someone to chew with an open mouth.
It would bother some, and some wouldn’t care.
Observing the opponent to find out what they hate.
It’s important to quickly determine that and then take advantage of it.
Shugor nodded with a satisfied look.
「It’s hard to learn to imitate tank in just one or two days.」
「Well, that applies not only to tanks. Every role has it’s own difficult points. I for example also wouldn’t be able to do so many things at once during combat like you do, Shugor. Since I’m basically a dumbass. Sticking to enemies while protecting my allies is the most I can do.」
「And that alone makes our lives a lot easier.」
Shugor made a refreshing smile, to which Nin and the others nodded.
……Please, don’t give me such kind smiles.
I’m not used to this.
「Then, let’s continue?」
We make our way through the labyrinth.
We pass through the 5th and 6th floors without any problem.
On the 7th floor, we took a short rest and continued the exploration.
The monsters that were appearing remained the same. But they gradually grew stronger.
Luna’s walking speed also fell.
They said that homunculi don’t have a notion of exhaustion.
So perhaps the peculiar atmosphere of the labyrinth is making her feel something similar to it.
……There is no need to go all the way to the 10th floor in one go.
It’s not unheard to spend a few days on it.
As Luna breathed a huge sigh upon reaching the 8th floor, I called out to her.
「Luna, are you alright?」
「Yes…… No problem.」
「During the previous battle your movements lacked sharpness. If you can’t go on, we can do the remaining exploration on another day.」
「It’s fine. I’m still fully operational.」
「What about your magic power?」
Until now she continuously used magic.
Magic power is the driving force for homunculi.
It’s a bit different, but…… This can be compared to using your own life force to activate magic.
「No problem. I regain more magic power during our walk between battles than I expend in combat.」
「Well, fine then. I gave you a magic power restoring potion, right? Feel free to drink it any time you like.」
「Acknowledged. I will use it when my magic power goes below half of the maximum capacity. Is that fine?」
「Yeah. Also, let me know if you are tired from walking.」
「I have no fatigue. So that is not a problem. Thanks for your concern.」
She lowered her head in a bow.
The twins are obviously fine, Nin also seems to be okay.
Shugor is doing shoulder rolls, being busy with some warm-up exercises.
After all, it’s hard being a leader.
Stopping for a rest we proceed through the floors.
And finally reached our goal, the 10th floor.
Nothing changed from any other floor, but it’s necessary to exercise some caution on the floors with round numbers.
That’s because unique monsters tend to appear on them.
Unique monsters that drop better magic stones than ordinary monsters.
At times they also might drop a piece of good equipment.
As the church calls it, blessings from God.
Investigation of the 10th floor would conclude the investigation request from the guild.
Looking at the results higher-ups would either give the labyrinth a rank depending on already gathered information or decide that further investigation is needed.
On that 10th floor, we attempted to locate enemies through magic but found nothing.
The detection magic gave off only one reaction.
One monster on a giant plain?
That is abnormal. Is it a unique monster?
That reaction gradually grew closer.
The three in the rear began preparations for magic, while we waited at high alert.
And, a human-like silhouette appeared in our sights. A man.
Dressed in something akin to a kimono, a dress coming from the east.
The man wearing katanas on his waist looked at us with a faint smile.
Lilia and Shugor were the first that brandished their weapons.
Both of them shouted almost simultaneously.
……This is the guardian?
「Ooh, here I thought that the same folk came, not learning their lesson, but I see a few new faces.」
「Haha, indeed. The guardian overseeing this labyrinth.」
He can speak so coherently?
Shock and excitement were mixed 1 to 1 within me.
I already saw human-shaped guardians.
But it’s my first time seeing one that can speak like an actual human.
He put one hand to his chest and smiled.
「Welcome, to my labyrinth, adventurers.」
Then, he spread both hands wide and showed a childish smirk.