Enjoy the chapter~
Chapter 4 – Ruler
Now that I remembered, I asked Black Mist what I had been worried about all this time. “Hey, is there a human town or village nearby?”
“I see, were you actually aiming for a human town?”
“If there is one, then yeah.”
“Tsukuru… I have some bad news for you.”
“Wh-what is it?”
“Right now, you’re almost at the center of the Great Borf Forest…”
“I was wondering if you were planning to go to the center and defeat the lord of this forest.”
“S-such a lord exists?”
I thought I could get out of this forest if I went down the river! Why am I suddenly about to reach the center!? And to think this forest has a lord? I don’t want to fight such a monster! It’s gotta be stronger than a Hell Bear or Musk Leopard, right? There’s no way the lord of the forest would be weaker than its subjects…
“Oh, it has such a loud voice…”
“What the hell is that…!”
At that moment, my [Wild Intuition] started setting off alarm bells, and I felt the presence of a very strong monster with [Presence Detection]. The monster was clearly coming right for me. I knew immediately because I could see large trees falling down in the distance, and getting closer. It’s dangerous! I was about to run away, but the monster showed up right in front of me in the blink of an eye, sniffing at the air eagerly. Its warm breath washed over me like a rough breeze.
Race : Emperor Dragon, Level 300
Skills : [Emperor’s Breath] [Fighting God] [Supremacy] [Super Regeneration] [Physical Attack Resistance] [Magical Attack Resistance]
Attributes: HP [S] | MP [S] | STR [EX] | INT [B] | AGI [A] | DEX [C] | LUK [E]
Title: Ruler of the Devil’s Nest
So, as you can tell, it’s a dragon, and it’s completely locked on to me.
Black Mist chuckled. “This brings you motivation, doesn’t it?”
“Why are you so happy?”
“You can beat this thing, right, Tsukuru?”
“Are you stupid? This guy level is 300, you know!”
Moreover, it’s even got [STR (EX)]?
The dragon looked like a huge lizard with wings attached. It was probably over five meters tall, with a likely length of thirty meters. Its golden scales were beautiful, and its batlike wings were folded on its back, so it might be able to fly.
Come on, if you have wings and can fly, you should just do that instead of knocking down trees in the forest.
“Hey, why does this guy notice me even though I’m wearing this hermit’s coat?”
“The Hermit’s Coat isn’t flawless, you know. Someone at a higher level than the wearer can notice you easily! In this particular case, your enemy is almost ninety levels higher, so the Coat will have almost no effect on it.”
It’s totally useless! Not being recognized by stronger monsters is way more important here!
“Don’t worry, if something is the same level as you, it will definitely still be effective.”
“Right. So, what are we going to do about this? There’s no chance of winning if we fight it, is there?”
“I’m here too, you know! So don’t worry!”
I could just feel Black Mist pushing out her chest proudly. She doesn’t have a chest anyway, she’s just a katana.
The Emperor Dragon in front of me raised its left forefoot and swung it down at me. I immediately jumped back to avoid it, but with such destructive power behind the blow, the impact formed a crater, throwing debris in all directions. The size of the debris varied, and I quickly pulled out Black Mist to block them.
“So how can we defeat this thing?”
Black Mist chuckled. “Isn’t it okay if we just fight it normally?”
“You stupid idiot! I haven’t even fought with a sword, you know!”
“What are you talking about, don’t you have the [Swordsmanship] skill?”
“[Swordsmanship] is a skill I got at the same time I got you! I’ve never used it before!”
“Wh-wh-what should we even do, then!?” Black Mist stuttered.
“That’s why I’m asking you!”
While the two of us were arguing, the Emperor Dragon made a big gesture of inhaling. The moment I realized what it was doing, it sprayed a golden breath from its mouth, accompanied by a devastating roar.
Needless to say, it was the Emperor Dragon using its [Emperor’s Breath], and since my [Wild Intuition] was ringing alarm bells before it happened, I jumped as far as I could to avoid it, but the range was incredible ― as was the pain when I couldn’t avoid it.
I don’t know how long it was until I regained my senses, but my vision was distorted and I panted in agony. The pain across my whole body now made my suffering from the Hell Bear and Musk Leopard seem like a children’s game.
I had leveled up significantly, my [HP] was at [B], and I’d even learned the skills [Strong Body] and [Sturdy], both of which were activated right before the breath hit me, which means my [HP] should’ve been equivalent to [S], but that one attack still ravaged my entire body and put me at the brink of death. I regretted not activating [Iron Wall] just then.
“Hey, are you still alive?”
Am I? I can’t even tell if I’m alive… I feel nothing. I can’t even talk. If I am still alive, it’s a miracle. When I managed to open my eyes, I saw the Emperor Dragon approaching me with thundering footprints and a triumphant expression.
“Hey, say something!”
I don’t have time to play with Black Mist right now. If I don’t escape now, I’m screwed! I activated [Dark Magic] and my body sank into the darkness. The Emperor Dragon looked regretful that I escaped before it could stomp me, and it started sniffing at where it last saw me while smashing the ground. I threw some meat into my mouth from [Material Storage].
It’s still a tough situation, even though I’ve experienced this several times. I eventually managed to swallow the meat after softening it enough with my saliva. If I had an HP bar, my remaining hp would definitely have been less than one percent. Even though this meat should be delicious, I couldn’t taste it at all.
Finally, my senses started to return. I couldn’t feel any pain before since I lost feeling in my whole body, but now I suddenly felt severe pain across my entire body. I couldn’t suppress a scream.
“Whoa, are you okay?”
I groaned. “Do I… look… okay… to you?”
“It looks like your sense of pain has leveled up after you escaped from the verge of death.”
“…Just stop talking, ugh… everything hurts.”
I chewed up a second piece of meat. It took time to chew, and it was painful just to move my jaw. A third, a fourth, a fifth… it took five pieces to fully recover. The Emperor Dragon was still loitering near where I first sank into the darkness.
“Hmm, what’s with that guy?”
“Are you not going to try again?”
“I don’t like being beaten, so I will, but what should I do? Should I try [Spring Water] first?”
“I don’t feel like I can win in close combat, so teach me about [Swordsmanship] next time.”
She laughed gently. “It can’t be helped. Alright then, prepare yourself! My special training is tough, you know!”
“Okay, first of all, [Spring Water].”
A raging torrent of [Spring Water] crashed into the Emperor Dragon, but for its huge body, the water was about as effective as a splash from a bucket. It didn’t seem to care at all.
“It doesn’t look like it did anything?”
“Well, I was expecting as much.”
The Emperor Dragon noticed where my attack was coming from and started to dig at the ground with anger. But I’m not in the ground, so no matter how much it dug, it wouldn’t reach me.
“Next is [Ignition]!”
Above the huge mouth which could swallow me in one gulp, its entire face lit on fire. As one would expect from the Emperor Dragon, it immediately tried to extinguish the flames by rolling around to smother them. I recalled how I beat the Sword Reaper, so I figured it was time to just leave it alone for a few hours. In a few moments, the golden body of the Emperor Dragon started to glow brightly, and my [Wild Intuition] alerted me to incoming danger.
“What is it?”
“I have a bad feeling about this.”
I quickly activated [Acceleration] and ran away at top speed. I couldn’t afford to be careless anymore, so that’s why I had to get away from it. Then, a terrible shock hit me in the back, knocking the wind out of me and sending me flying. The Emperor Dragon had caused some kind of shockwave as it emitted light in all directions.
I got blasted dozens of meters away, tumbling uncontrollably through the darkness. I didn’t take extra damage from the tumbling because I activated [Iron Wall] right before the initial impact, but I still took considerable damage overall.
I was glad to finally stop spinning, but soon after, I was painfully informed of how badly that impact hurt me. Why can its attack hit me even in this darkness? I immediately popped another piece of meat into my mouth, fully recovering after three slices.
When I looked back at the Emperor Dragon’s huge body, it looked small enough that it must have been a few hundred meters away. And when I saw the spectacle around it, I was speechless. It wasn’t the fact the Emperor Dragon had spread its wings and now flew through the sky, it was the massive crater right where the Emperor Dragon and I had just been.
It seems that the shock waves carved out the ground and rivers, and destroyed an extensive area of the forest. The river was now flowing like a waterfall into a huge basin. The devastation was immense. For those opposed to destroying nature, the Emperor Dragon was surely the enemy of the world!
I looked back at the Emperor Dragon hovering in the air.
I couldn’t see it clearly because it was so far away, but I felt like that monster was looking right at me.
“Hey, how does he know where I am?”
“I don’t know either, but that guy’s persistence is guaranteed, you know. Several monsters invaded his territory in the past and then tried to escape, but none of them ever succeeded, he killed them all.”
“…What an obsessive guy.”
“He might keep chasing you even after you leave the forest, you know.”
In the end, the Emperor Dragon knew exactly where I was and relentlessly chased me wherever I went. I couldn’t get in any direct attacks because I was inside the darkness, but I didn’t know when he might attack me with that golden light again, so I had to get rid of him as soon as possible.
But no matter how I tried, I couldn’t think of a way to do it. I didn’t expect [Ignition] to be extinguished just like that. I thought the Emperor Dragon’s light skill might have been from his [Supremacy] skill.
Needless to say, the only way for me to defeat it without the [Ignition] skill (which I thought could never be extinguished) was, of course, [Dismantling]. However, that required me to touch the Emperor Dragon’s body, and to do that, I had to stick at least part of my body out of the darkness.
Its body is huge, so it’s not a big deal actually touching it; the problem is it knows where I am almost perfectly. If I approach carelessly, I’m sure I’ll get hit or blown out of the shadows from his [Supremacy] skill again before I can actually touch him. And of course, that would also wipe out the forest for several kilometers around us.
“Hey, is it safe to go near that thing?”
“Obviously not, I’d say ― not even a little bit.”
“That’s what I thought…”
I couldn’t think of any useful strategies. So instead of taking it head on, I moved through the forest to see if I could get any useful skills from other monsters. The first one I met was slaughtered and cooked in short order, and what I got from it was [Mask Presence], [Camouflage], [Flee], and [Absolute Defense].
It was great that I was able to get the [Mask Presence] skill, and the other three would be helpful too. All I had to do now was wait until nighttime. The decisive battle would be limited to the time when darkness rules the world! Darkness was like my home turf now, so I’d have no disadvantages, unlike when I fought in the daytime.
The Emperor Dragon still followed me wherever I went. That was fine, it saved me the trouble of finding him again anyway. I looked up at the jet black night sky and made up my mind. Tonight, in this place, I’m going to defeat the Emperor Dragon!
I was ready. If I couldn’t kill it now, it would only mean this [LUK (EX)] attribute of mine was worthless. I slowly approached the Emperor Dragon at a walk. It looked more vigilant, regardless of whether it could see me approaching.
Still within the darkness, I arrived right in front of the Emperor Dragon’s face. I was actually floating in the air ― as long as it’s night, when darkness is all-encompassing, I can fly around or even go underwater. It’s only natural that I’d choose nighttime for the decisive battle when my daytime movements are limited by where the shadows are.
First things first, I activated [Acceleration] and moved instantly to the dragon’s back, sticking my hand out of the darkness to try touching its body. However, the big monster moved quicker than you’d expect from such a big thing, dropping down to avoid me and whipping its tail at my hand in the same breath. I retracted my hand quickly into the safety of darkness, avoiding the blow.
Its ability to sense my presence was quite precise. It didn’t even have a specific skill for that, but it could still tell when I appeared, and could detect danger just as well. What a troublesome opponent.
Next, I used [Mask Presence]! The Emperor Dragon noticed my sudden disappearance and looked around, trying to find me. The skill seemed quite effective. With it still active, I put my hand under its belly and tried to activate [Dismantling].
However, the Emperor Dragon reacted to this as well and leaped into the sky immediately. I already knew it, but that monster’s ability to avoid danger was incredible. Annoying, too, but given that it was the ruler of this Great Borf Forest, that was just driving home the fact that it was the strongest enemy I’d ever fought.
“You let out a strong killing intent. That’s why it noticed.”
“My killing intent, huh?”
“Yeah. Even if you erase your presence, you’re still letting off a strong killing intent the moment you activate your skill.”
“But my presence should’ve been erased by [Mask Presence]. Wouldn’t my killing intent be included in that?”
“[Mask Presence] does normally mask killing intent as well, but it didn’t work for you because you released more killing intent while it was active. That skill erases your presence as it was when you activated it; if your presence changes while it’s still activated, the changes will get through ― like releasing a strong killing intent. It’s obvious your opponent will notice.”
She says that, but I didn’t feel like I was intentionally letting out a killing intent, and I don’t have any tricks for erasing an unconsciously released killing intent, either. Crap, how can I get rid of it? I can’t think of anything.
My thoughts were interrupted by [Wild Intuition] alerting me just as the Emperor Dragon started radiating a golden light. Because I was in the middle of a thought, I was almost too slow to react. The Emperor Dragon released its [Supremacy] skill, and I barely activated [Absolute Defense] in time for it to hit me. I got blown away by the shock wave, but fortunately I took no damage due to the effect of [Absolute Defense].
“That was close.”
“It’s not good to get distracted by thinking during battle, you know.”
Black Mist warned me like it was obvious, when she was the reason I was pondering to begin with! I flicked my finger against Black Mist’s handle, ignoring the sword’s protests as I kept an eye on the dragon that had destroyed another part of the forest. It flew calmly over the devastation and approached me.
When I saw the cocky expression on its face, I thought about punching it, but I recognized that we were in a bit of a stalemate. What to do…
The Emperor Dragon calmly circled around me. What a depressing situation… but I finally got an idea. It’d be great if I could actually pull it off.
The Emperor Dragon followed me as I descended to the ground, but it stayed hovering in the air a few meters up. Tsk. If he descended all the way down, he wouldn’t be able to escape in that direction, but this shouldn’t affect the plan that much.
Like last time, I activated [Mask Presence]. While the Emperor Dragon was trying to figure out where I went, I moved over its back and took my hands out of the darkness.
No problem so far. [Mask Presence] was still working, so it remained unaware of me. I gently touched the scales. Still no reaction. Might be due to his uselessly huge body being protected by hard scales. Then I activated [Dismantling], and the usual splattering occurred.
I let loose a celebratory holler, a drawn out “Yeah!” as the dragon’s dismantled parts fell to the ground. Black Mist congratulated me. “Oh, you did it!” What now lay before me was the meat, scales, bones, and other loot from the Emperor Dragon.
“But man, to think that skill can be used in such an interesting way.”
I can’t get rid of my killing intent, it takes proper training to erase it on your own. Just then, the Emperor Dragon didn’t respond to my killing intent. How?
It’s easy if I just told you the trick, but first I really want to praise myself for coming up with something so clever. I’ve done well!
“I’ve never heard of camouflaging killing intent with [Camouflage].”
Ugh, this damn sword! What am I supposed to say now? I was about to reveal the trick myself, but she beat me to it! Well, I don’t mind that much. As Black Mist said, I used [Camouflage] on my own killing intent, changing it to seem like affection. I figured it wouldn’t feel any danger if I came at it with love, and even if it did react, it wouldn’t immediately counterattack.
It worked, and disguised my killing intent brilliantly, so thanks to that, the Emperor Dragon didn’t react at all, or avoid my [Dismantling]. So here we are.
“I’ve leveled up.”
Oops, if I kill a superior opponent, as always, the level-up notifications won’t stop scrolling past! Let’s just grab the materials for now.
Man, [Material Storage] is such a cheat. I can’t store living beings, but there doesn’t seem to be a problem or upper limit for storing dead things. And now, finally, I’ve found something that I have to say is utterly weird to see in a place like this.
“Ooh, those appear in this place too, huh?”
“Do you know about this?”
“I do, yeah. It’s a clear bonus gacha that appears in front of those who have cleared a dungeon!”
“…So this world has a gacha too, huh?”
“Does your world also have it?”
“Yeah, it was like a game in our world. So if this is a clear bonus, it’s a good thing, right?”
“Hmm, a game, huh… When I think about it, the clear bonus gacha could be called a kind of game. So yeah, it should give us something good!”
“Well then, I just need to turn the crank, right?”
“Yep, you got it. Turn the crank and a ball will come out. You can tell the rank of the reward based on the color of the ball.”
“The color tells you what rank it is? What are the colors?”
“In ascending rank, the balls come in red, yellow, blue, silver, and gold. Red is the lowest rank and gold is the highest rank. What you get is usually random, ranging from a skill to an item. But jeez, I always suspected this Great Borf Forest was actually a dungeon…”
“Did you, now? Well anyway, should I go ahead and turn the crank?” I was looking forward to seeing what would come out.
I turned the crank of the dungeon’s clear bonus gacha. After turning it twice, I heard the sound of a ball falling out, and laid eyes on it. There was a pregnant pause.
“…Hey, this one is black, isn’t it?”
“The gacha balls I knew of only ranged from red to gold, but.. have the dungeons’ specifications changed during these hundreds of years?”
Apparently, even Black Mist didn’t know anything about the black ball that just came out. I knew it was formerly a sword saint, but I didn’t think it had been hundreds of years since she died.
That was all well and good, but what’s going on with this black ball…
The first thing that came to mind about the color black was something negative, like a curse. I couldn’t think of anything good.
“What’s wrong, won’t you open it?”
“I’m not sure I want to. With a color like that, it seems cursed…”
Black Mist laughed. “What a cowardly remark! I never would have expected to hear that from the hero who defeated that Emperor Dragon!”
“Uh, hero is kinda…”
“Tsukuru, you defeated the Emperor Dragon! No one’s ever been able to do that before! You have to take pride in that!”
“W-Well, yeah, but…”
“Don’t stop now! Go ahead and open it!”
The moment the black ball opened with a creaking sound, a cloud of smoke burst out of it and I started coughing.
You have learned the [Equivalent Exchange] skill.
Apparently I learned a skill from that. Equivalent Exchange is a famous catchphrase on that alchemy-based anime, so… well, it’s fine. I’ll check on it later.
My next task was to make use of [Ultimate Cooking]. There were a lot of pieces of meat this time, and one staggeringly large piece of meat from the tail, so I cut that one into smaller chunks with Black Mist, thinking it might not be possible to cut with the copper sword.
“Can you stop using me as a kitchen knife?”
“Come on, even if it’s already dead, you’ve cut a dragon’s flesh. There’s no greater honor for you than that, is there?”
“What do you think of me!?”
“Um, you’re a sword, right?”
“Ugh, yes, I’m a sword, but I’m a divine sword!”
In response to Black Mist’s protesting, I grilled one of the sliced chunks of tail meat with [Ultimate Cooking] and threw it into my mouth. Mmm, it’s delicious! How is it this good?!
You have learned the [Supremacy] skill.
What the…? Did it just say I learned that destructive skill with the golden light, [Supremacy]!?
I swung Black Mist sideways and split the level 120 Ogre King’s body in two, killing it on the spot. The Ogre-type monsters in my surroundings began to split into small groups to flee. I waved Black Mist at those Ogres as well, and a vacuum blade was released from the tip of the sword which cut them apart. It’s not a skill or anything, it’s just a side effect of waving Black Mist around. It sliced up those level 80 to 100 Ogres like paper.
“Heh, you’re getting better.”
“Of course, I’m good enough now that I can even beat that Emperor Dragon with just my sword!”
Black mist laughed. “Since when did you become so confident in front of an honored Sword Saint like me, huh?”
“I survived your training, after all. Isn’t it only natural that I’d become more confident?”
“You’re right; now that I’ve trained you, there’s nothing in this world that can stand against your swordsmanship!”
I had obtained a lot of skills after defeating the Emperor Dragon, not only by leveling up but also from the meat. The [Equivalent Exchange] skill from the dungeon’s clear bonus gacha also turned out to be a mind-blowing cheat.
I had stayed in the forest for a few more months. Black Mist suggested I gain more experience and train in the sword by taking advantage of a special characteristic of the Emperor Dragon, from the fact it was the dungeon boss.
You see, dungeon bosses respawn after three days. I’d fight and kill the Emperor Dragon after it respawned, then wait another three days for it to respawn and do it all over again. Black Mist said she’d train me if my level exceeded 290, which it did after I killed the Emperor Dragon about three more times.
When I asked Black Mist for instruction, the first thing she wanted me to do was create muscle memory through repetitive practice swings. By doing nothing but swing my blade around, I would memorize the shape and reach of the weapon.
The first time the Emperor Dragon respawned, I fought it using Black Mist, and almost died several times in the ensuing battle. I managed to win by making full use of my other skills, such as [Absolute Defense], [Iron Wall], [Fighting God], and others that I obtained from the first Emperor Dragon’s meat.
I even lost an arm during the fight, but it was completely restored with the recovery meat, paired with the brand new [Super Regeneration] that I also got from the dragon. It was back to sword training for another three days, then repeat the death battle with the boss, more of the same training, and another death battle.
Thanks to that, I grew so familiar with the sword that it was like an extension of myself… and then I exceeded level 300. At level 301, Black Mist was flabbergasted.
“H-h-h-h-he-hey, why’s your level suddenly 301!?”
“Why, you ask? Isn’t it obvious? It’s because I cleared the third stage condition for limit break, isn’t it?”
Black Mist had practically lost her mind. To think that this was something so abnormal! I was sorry for keeping quiet about it, but I thought this would be a good time to reveal it, so I explained the story about how I cleared the third stage condition for limit break.
Name : Tsukuru Sumeragi
Job : Chef, Level 310
Skills I : [Ultimate Cooking] [Ignition] [Dismantling] [Detailed Appraisal] [Material Storage] [Spring Water] [Tool Maintenance] [Food Ingredient Detection]
Skills II : [Night vision] [Acceleration] [Throwing] [Presence Detection] [Sense of Smell Enhancement] [Wild Intuition] [Cooperation] [Group Action] [Whispering] [Monstrous Strength] [Strong Body] [Strong Arm] [Sturdy] [Iron Wall] [Close Combat Technique] [Intuition] [Swordsmanship] [Mask Presence] [Camouflage] [Flee] [Absolute Defense] [Fighting God] [Supremacy] [Super Regeneration] [Physical Attack Resistance] [Magic Attack Resistance]
Skills III : [Plant Magic] [Wind Magic] [Shadow Sewing] [Dark Magic] [Summoning Undead] [Earth Magic]
Unique Skills : [Equivalent Exchange]
Attributes : HP [S] | MP [S] | STR [S] | INT [S] | AGI [S] | DEX [EX] | LUK [EX]
Titles : Weird Person, Devil’s Nest Conqueror, Sword Saint
Mask Presence ⇒ Erase your presence, and maybe sneak into the women’s bath ♪
Camouflage ⇒ You can camouflage anything, such as appearance or status! You’re officially a scammer from today onwards!
Flee ⇒ You can temporarily raise [AGI] by two ranks, but do you really want to escape?
Absolute Defense ⇒ Perfectly block damage, but only for a moment. Feel like chasing skirts yet?
Equivalent Exchange ⇒ You can create anything by consuming materials and magic! Nevertheless, take care of your life ♪
Fighting God ⇒ A godly fighting technique, making use of all weapons! It’s not the same as martial arts ♪
Supremacy ⇒ Releases a supreme burst of energy! That golden light seems almost divine, doesn’t it?
Super Regeneration ⇒ Even if part of you gets cut off, it will grow back like a lizard’s tail ♪
Physical Attack Resistance ⇒ Oh, this is perfect for someone like you who enjoys getting beaten up ♡
Magic Attack Resistance ⇒ The pain of being burned by magic might change into pleasure, you know?
The [Equivalent Exchange] skill from the clear bonus gacha was allocated as a unique skill. [Detailed Appraisal] informed me that this was the only unique skill that existed in this world. In other words, it’s an incredibly powerful skill.
I kept fighting the Emperor Dragon until I reached Level 310. I didn’t particularly target level 310, that’s just where I ended up over the course of training my swordsmanship.
I also got the title of [Sword Saint] for some reason, and [Devil’s Nest Conqueror] from killing the first Emperor Dragon. However, having this title doesn’t seem to mean anything; it doesn’t improve any of my attributes or skills. Maybe there’s some small effect, but there’s nothing right now that I can tell.
Oh, by the way, Black Mist evolved. Its appearance hardly changed, but the length of the sword increased by a few centimeters. What I was really happy about was that she also learned new skills from the evolution.
Name : Black Mist (Second Form)
Skills : [Unbreakable] [Sharpness] [Purification] [Evolution] [Special Move (2)] [Doubled Experience Points]
Attributes : HP [EX] | MP [S] | STR [G] | INT [S] | AGI [G] | DEX [G] | LUK [S]
Titles: Fighting God Sword
Doubled Experience Points ⇒ Experience gained by the holder will be doubled.
Fighting God Sword ⇒ A divine sword suitable for transcendent masters of swordsmanship.
As a matter of fact, the effect of [Doubled Experience Points] is particularly ideal since my level has exceeded 300. The Emperor Dragon’s level was still at 300 no matter how many times it respawned, so killing it no longer gives me such a tasty amount of experience points. Nonetheless, he still contained enough that I could somewhat notice the effect of [Doubled Experience Points].
Well, leveling up wasn’t the point of fighting it anyway, I was just training with the sword.
Finally, when the title [Sword Saint] was added to my stats, I decided to stop hunting the Emperor Dragon; it felt like I was bullying the weak. I instead started on a new journey to leave the forest and reach a human town.
On my way out, every monster that got in my way was killed mercilessly. The Ogres that swarm around the borders of the Great Borf Forest challenged me to a fight, and I had just finished slaughtering the lot of them. The snow all around me was trampled and dyed red with Ogre blood, and the air smelled of rusty iron.
With fight over with, I could finally leave the Great Borf Forest. Before me now was an open plain, like a meadow covered with snow, and several monsters wandered in the area. As soon as those monsters saw me, they turned their tails and ran away. Apparently, the highest level of monsters in this meadow was around level 80, and I got the impression I was overwhelmingly strong based on that.
I basked in the feeling of finally leaving the Great Borf Forest, but it was time to move on to the town. I took my first triumphant step.
“Hey, are you really going to show up like that?”
“Just look at yourself.”
I look… oh yeah, now that I think about it, I’ve been living in the forest for months already… My hair was wild and messy, and my only article of clothing was the Hermit’s Coat. If I went to town with this appearance, I’d definitely be stopped by the guards.
“…I guess I should take a bath and clean up my hair first, shouldn’t I?”
Let’s just fix that; it’s something worth doing, after all. I immediately dug up the ground in two separate spots with [Earth Magic], and layered each hollow with stones to make them solid. I put a stone that had been heating up with [Ignition] right in the middle. There were a lot of them to put down, so it’s pretty hot already.
“I guess it’s about time. [Spring Water].”
Sizzling steam rose up as I filled each hollow with water. I tested the temperature with my hand and concluded it was nice and toasty before taking off my Hermit’s Coat to jump into the newly made bathtub with a splash.
“Ah, that feels nice.”
Bathing in hot water is the best thing to heal a tired body! When the water started to cool down, I added more heated stones to maintain the temperature. After warming up sufficiently, I took out some soap from [Material Storage].
This wasn’t my first time taking a bath like this, so that’s why I made soap. The only material I needed to make it was oil, obtained from monster fat, and the production was taken care of with [Equivalent Exchange]. That skill pretty much lets me make anything I want, even if I don’t have the proper materials.
I lathered the soap onto a washcloth I’d also created with [Equivalent Exchange] and scrubbed my body clean. Technically, washing while inside the hot bath is not good manners, but it’s fine in this case. I’m in the middle of a snow-covered meadow, it’s too cold to get out of the tub!
I washed myself from head to toe, then used clean water from the other bathtub to rinse the soap off, wiping myself dry with a clean towel. Then I took out a hair dryer from [Material Storage] and flowed magic through it. The fan spun quickly in response to my magic, and with its low magic conductivity wires exchanged for adamantite wire, the heat blown out of the dryer was generated efficiently. This entire device was made from [Equivalent Exchange] to begin with.
I tidied my dry hair into a ponytail and felt a little better. All that was left was clothes and shoes. I hadn’t made any clothes until now because I didn’t feel the need to, but times had changed.
I took out some white wool from a monster called Sleeping Sheep and turned it into underwear with [Equivalent Exchange]. I could feel a lot of my magic getting absorbed, and the Sleeping Sheep’s wool turned into good underwear with a very fine texture.
The next thing I took out from [Material Storage] was Hyena Wolf fur. They might sound like small fry, but they’re still level 150 monsters, so I used the fur of such a strong monster to make a shirt and a pair of pants. Of course, that monster only seems strong outside the Great Borf Forest. These clothes didn’t turn out to have hair-like fur, and were more like leather.
For the last step, I turned the Hell Bear’s fur into a coat and boots. The coat still kept the texture of the Hell Bear’s fur, but the boots were more like shoe leather. I went ahead and put on all these nice clothes that I’d just made.
“All right, now let’s go!”
“Wait a minute!”
“Your status; it’s not good to just leave it like that.”
“O-oh yeah, that’s right. Well then, I’ll disguise it with [Camouflage].”
Name : Tsukuru Sumeragi
Job : Chef, Level 20
Skills : [Cooking] [Ignition] [Dismantling] [Appraisal] [Material Storage]
Sleeping Sheep Underwear (Top and Bottom) ⇒ Undergarments that are so pleasant to touch you can’t even compare them with silk. Why are you wearing it like this?
Hyena Shirt ⇒ A jet-black shirt that enhances [STR] (Large). It’s black ♪
Hyena Jeans ⇒ A jet black pair of jeans that enhances [AGI] (Large). Even though it’s made of leather, it’s still being called jeans?
Death Bear Coat ⇒ Made from black bear fur, it has temperature control, physical attack resistance and magic attack resistance. The hood is fashioned after a bear’s head and gives off an extraordinary presence, so be careful not to get shot accidentally ♪
Death Bear Boots ⇒ Black boots that are super durable, water-proof, and increase kick attack damage (Large). It’s perfect for your smelly feet ♪
Still, I wanted the Hyena Shirt and Hyena Jeans to be named Wolf Shirt and Wolf Jeans if possible. Naming it Hyena makes it seem like newbie gear… and that last part of the Death Bear Coat’s description seems dangerous, doesn’t it? Well, as I understand things based on Black Mist’s explanation, there’s not many people that can exceed level 100 anyway, so it should be fine.