Here’s the chapter, enjoy~
Chapter 14 – Get ready to conquer the dungeon!
After our audience with the King, we gathered in Ruri’s room in the royal castle. The room was off-white with floral patterns on the walls and was furnished in a soothing atmosphere. We sat down on the cat-legged sofa and sipped the tea that had been prepared for us.
“For now, thanks for your help. It’s a shame that the Chloria was wasted, but since we were able to get the terms of the termination of the contract, we can consider our goal accomplished.”
“I was just standing there, not talking, but I was so nervous…”
Listening to Ruri announce our victory, Lusha laughs, her legs are still shaking. I agree with her, of course, but there are more important things to do this time.
“As for me, I’m glad that the King didn’t mark Lusha.”
“That’s what I thought too. I don’t want to get Lusha involved and injure her in any way…”
Ren immediately nodded and let out a sigh of relief.
“But if there’s something wrong, you’ll have to talk to us properly. We’ll definitely help you out! Isn’t that right, Hiroki, Ruri?”
“Thanks, guys! But I’m not that weak either, so I’ll at least be able to protect myself.”
At Ren’s words, Lusha smiles. As expected of a handsome man, the things he says are very different from mine. But the words that came in return from Lusha are also very dependable.
“The only thing left to do is to get the lake drop, and then it will be over. The first thing we need to do is gather some basic information, and then leave immediately.”
“Well then, I’ve already looked into it. Or perhaps it would be more accurate to say that I’ve been briefed on every single dungeon in this country before…”
“Oh, that’s a relief.”
Ruri took out a map from a drawer and spread it out on the table. She pointed to the city where we are now and moved down from there―stopping at the place where the picture of a lake was drawn. I see, because it’s on a lake, it’s called the bottom of a lake dungeon.
“From what I’ve heard, the water in the dungeon is up to the height of one’s ankles. You might want to wear boots if you can prepare them.”
“Then, I’ll go ask the old man.”
Then I asked Ruri to give me information about the monsters on several floors since entering. Then, it was all over.
“…Eeh, is that all?”
“I mean, it’s more like a map of the interior and how many levels there are up to the boss’s room…”
I was only expecting to get that kind of information! When I shout, Ruri smiles bitterly. I know it’s not because she doesn’t want to tell me, but…!
“It’s a dungeon that only a few adventurers have ever completed, with only that much information.”
“Well, I knew it was going to happen. Otherwise, that King wouldn’t have been so confident about making the condition.”
“Yes. But the King’s miscalculation is that he doesn’t know that Hiroki is the toughest among us.”
Hearing Ruri’s words, I think, hey, give me a break.
“Ren and Ruri are more powerful than me, you know?”
“Level wise, maybe yes, but overall, the knowledgeable and resourceful Hiroki is stronger than us.”
“Well, I mean…”
If they’re this strong, they’ll be able to overwhelm a lot of things with just two words: firepower rather than knowledge. Especially for Ruri in particular; she seems to be quite implacable. However, since Lusha and Ren are nodding in agreement, I thank them for their honesty.
It was decided that the only thing to prepare is a pair of boots, so the only thing left to do is to go to the dungeon. Since there’s no particular day-night situation between us, we can leave at any time.
So, I was about to go to the old man’s place, when I heard a knock on the room’s door. When Ruri responded while tilting her head, it was Ishmer and Lucia-sama who came to visit.
It seems that they knew we were going to have an audience with the King, so they came to check on us.
“Welcome. Ishmer-sama, Lucia-sama. Thank you for coming and worrying about us.”
“Yes. I heard that your audience with His Majesty is over.”
“Is everything okay? Takanashi-sama.”
Ruri invited them into the room and explained what had happened earlier. Then, Lucia-sama’s face grew paler and paler.
“The bottom lake dungeon? You are going to such a dangerous place!?”
It must be a perfect place for the ladylike Lucia-sama to raise her voice. Ishmer seems to agree with that.
“That’s a place where a skilled knight has to party up to go.”
“Yes! Sakurai-sama, please get the condition changed now!”
“Calm down, Lucia. Sakurai is a capable person, don’t talk to him like you think it’s impossible.”
“Oh… my apologies, Sakurai-sama.”
Lucia-sama’s, who was admonished by Ishmer, dropped her shoulders and hung her head.
“No, you were worried about me. Thank you, both of you.”
But still… and I look at Ishmer. He thought I was a normal healer when we went to collect Chloria. He was even more surprised when I told him I was an evasion healer, and my level is higher. I’m sure that’s something Ishmer had never experienced before.
And yet, he accepted me so readily in this way. I don’t think that’s an effortless thing to do. Normally, though, he would have reacted like the King or refused to party with me because I was an evasion healer without even listening to me.
…He’s a knight of this country, and I don’t want him to be my enemy.
When I told her that I had no problem with it, Lucia-sama softly smiled.
“It seems that I, apparently, get overly concerned. If I were stronger, I wouldn’t feel that way, would I?”
“There’s nothing wrong with being worried about it, so there’s nothing to be concerned about. It’s not a bad thing to have to worry. However, if you worry about him too much, he might think you are bothering him, so you might have to be careful.”
It’s natural to have feelings of concern for people you know, your family, and others. Well, I want them to trust me and send me away, but I think that’s not easy to do even if I’m forced to do so.
…And honestly, I think that if there’s an evasion, I can abbreviate the dungeon without a problem.
“I’ll come back properly; it’ll be fine. Ishmer-sama also watches the surroundings well during the battle so that I can rely on him.”
“Thank you, Sakura-sama… I’ll do my best to do better. For now, I’m praying for you to succeed in capturing the dungeon.”
It seems that Lucia-sama was relieved, and that’s the end of the story. Then Ishmer, who appeared to be planning the timing, looked at us.
“Are the four of you from the same town?”
“Watanabe, Sakurai, and I are from the same town. And then we met Lusha in this town.”
“So that was it. Miss Lusha had a strange status too, so I’d have thought so.”
We all laugh at Ishmer’s words. Indeed, Lusha’s status is also a rare category in this world, I guess so. When I thought that, Ruri looked at Ishmer.
“I think I have a common status as a wizard, though?”
“Oh, that was true too. Watanabe-dono has a good balance of offense and defense… The only two people with an unusual status were the two of them, huh?”
I’m sorry about this, Ishmer says to Ruri and Ren. No no no no, then it’s just me and Lusha who look weird!
“Absolutely, evasion is highly useful! Recovery is important, of course, but I’m sure there will come a time when people will understand how good it is.”
“Well then, let’s hope Sakurai can handle it. Because I’ve seen it in person and thought he was someone I’d want at the party.”
“…Oh, thank you.”
I looked at Ishmer, who was convinced by my explanation of the story, and I had a faint hope in my heart that one day there would be more evasion healers…
◆ ◆ ◆
I rang the doorbell as I came to the old dwarf guy. I came to buy a pair of boots to go to the bottom lake dungeon. I told Lusha and the others that I would be going to the dungeon after I finished shopping.
“Oh, welcome. And what are you up to today?”
“I wanted a new piece of equipment, like a pair of boots.”
“What’s it for?”
The old man asked for an explanation, and I explained that I was going to the bottom lake dungeon. As soon as I explained that I was going to the bottom lake dungeon, he immediately made a move.
“I’ve got the equipment for a water level dungeon. Come this way.”
I was led to a shelf in the back of the store. There were multiple sizes of boots and light cloaks made of water-repellent materials.
“There are adventurers who buy rain gear for the same reason you do, so I have a certain number of them available. If you don’t have a size or have some particular preference, I can make a special order for you.”
“I’d love to have custom equipment, but I don’t have the time right now, so I’m asking for off-the-shelf equipment.”
“All right. Then pick one that fits.”
I wear several pairs of boots and choose one that is a good size. The street lamp should be long enough to cover the dagger at my waist completely. Since I’m going to avoid all the monster attacks anyway, I don’t need to be that durable.
I choose a pair of blue boots and a white cloak and pay the bill. It’s not a particularly good piece of equipment, so the total price for the two of them is just 7 thousand Lotto.
“They say the bottom lake dungeon is challenging, so be careful! When you come back safely, come to the shop to see me again.”
“Yes, I’ll come to visit you when I get back. Then I’m sure I’ll be going to Tangerine next, so I’ll probably ask you to help with supplies and such.”
After leaving the old man’s shop, the next step is to buy some groceries and other items. I don’t know how many days I’ll be spending in the dungeon, so I’ll buy more than usual. Since I’m the only one this time, anti-monster potions are also a necessity. If they come to me in numbers, there’s a chance they’ll beat me to a pulp.
Once I’ve got everything in place, I set off. I climbed into the carriage that would take me to the town near the lake.