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Chapter 23 – The Pointy Elf Ears Are Cute
“Fumu… I’m not used to eating it, but it’s not bad.”
“That’s good to hear.”
Today’s dinner was a kind of fresh pasta that I made in the Peperoncino style. I kneaded the grain flour with water and a little vegetable oil, rolled it out, folded it, piled it up, and cut it into flat noodles with a knife. After that, I boiled it briefly for about two minutes, fried it in oil with garike, pepar, salted meat, and adjusted the taste with salt to make something like peperoncino.
“Hmm, it’s not quite right.”
“Really? I think the texture is delightful.”
“It’s not very firm. I wonder if it would be different if I added an egg.”
Maybe this grain flour itself is not suitable for pasta in the first place. Anyway, we had this for dinner, fruit and vegetable salad. I wasn’t satisfied with the result, so I’d really like to try again.
Now, after dinner, I had a short free time. If I didn’t have anything in particular to do, I’d like to drink mead with Sylphy and go straight to bed, but I have some things to do, so I’ll leave the lovey-dovey stuff for now.
“What are you going to do today?”
“I need to mass-produce crossbows, and I also want to make a prototype of an improved crossbow. Also, I’m going to make a weapon for Sylphy.”
“Hou, that’s very nice of you.”
I wonder if I should give a knife as a present to a woman, but I guess it’s okay since she’s happy.
The first thing to do is to reserve a crafting tool for the improved workbench.
・Improved Crossbow――Materials: Steel leaf spring x 1, wood x 2, mechanical parts x 3, tough string x 1
I’ve already made a good number of steel leaf springs, and the tough string can be substituted with the tough tendon from Gizma’s hind leg. So, for now, I’ll make three crossbows, including one for myself. After that, I’ll need three hundred ordinary crossbows. I’ve got more than enough wood and fiber from yesterday’s massive logging, and I can use Gizma shells to replace the animal bones that are the main obstacle, so that shouldn’t be a problem either.
After that, I’ll turn all the iron arrowheads I have into crossbow bolts. I also have plenty of branches to use as shaft material, so there’s no problem. The only problem is that I don’t have enough iron arrowheads to make 500 of them, and that’s something I need to make. I guess this is the only thing I can make with the improved workbench. The next one is to be made using the blacksmithing facility.
“Hmm, I don’t see anything on the list that I was planning to make for Sylphy.
“…You can’t make it?”
It’s hard to bear the sight of a depressed Sylphy with her long ears flattened.
“N-no, you don’t have to be so depressed.. it will probably be fine. It can be made in the same way as Bardiche.”
At that time, when I opened the blacksmithing facility menu and imagined in my head what I want to make, it was added. It must work the same way.
What I’m trying to make is a blade called a Kukri. It has a so-called “inner curve” shape that bends inward in a “く” shape. The blade is quite distinctive in appearance. The tip of the blade is wider than the base, making the tip heavier, and it has an excellent cutting ability. In a video I saw on the Internet, it cut through a thick piece of hanging meat with a single blade and cut through the meat on the bone. I’ve also seen one that was thrown and pierced deep into a wooden board.
As soon as I thought of it, Kukri was added to the crafting menu. Yeah, it looks like I can use this method after all.
“I think I can do it.”
Sylphy-san was smiling, a complete change from earlier. Her ears, which had been sunken, also straightened up. If she looks so happy, it makes me happy too. So, what’s the material for it…?
・Kukri――Materials: steel leaf spring x 2, wood x 1, animal skin x 1
Why the leaf spring…? Well, that’s okay. More importantly, the problem is the animal skin. I think I am out of stock of animal skins. I glanced at Sylphy. I can’t bear to tell this result to Sylphy, whose eyes are sparkling with excitement. But I have to tell her the truth.
“I’m sorry, Sylphy, I can’t make it because I don’t have any… animal skins.”
Sylphy’s ears went down again… but then they stood up again. Then Sylphy rushed into the house and returned quickly.
“Do you think this will work?”
What Sylphy brought was some kind of nicely tanned leather. I took it and put it in my inventory and found that I could use it as a substitute.
“It’s okay; I can make it.”
The leather that Sylphy brought me seemed to be equivalent to two animal skins, so I decided to make two Kukris. Not long after, I finished crafting the Kukris.
“Here you go. This is the Kukri blade I made for Sylphy.”
The finished Kukri was placed in a beautiful leather sheath. I wonder if the appearance changes slightly depending on the material?
“Oh… The shape is unusual, isn’t it?”
“It’s rare to find a blade with an internal curve. But it’s very sharp. It’s a knife that emphasizes cutting power.”
“I see. It’s heavy, and it seems to cut really well.”
“I made another one, so you should definitely try it out. It can also be used for throwing, so you should practice with it. If the sharpness dulls, let me know, and I’ll fix it.”
“Yes, I will take good care of it.”
With the blade in her hand, Sylphy smiled at me like a flower blooming. Yeah, she’s cute, but please don’t do that while swinging the Kukri. I feel my life is in danger straight away.
I pretend that I can’t hear the wind noise nearby as much as possible and use the rest of the iron to mass-produce the iron arrowheads before processing them into bolts. It’s not enough, though. Even with the amount I have reserved at the workbench, I haven’t even reached one hundred. I’ll have to go out mining tomorrow, after all.
After finishing the operation of the blacksmithing facility, I went back to the improved workbench. Going back and forth between these workbenches is really like a crafting game.
The improved crossbow was ready, so I took it from the workbench and put it in my inventory. I’ll try one now.
“Hmm? Is that the new crossbow?”
“Yeah, it uses metal for the bow. I think it’s much more powerful. Mmm, it’s stiff! Oops!”
The crossbow with metal springs is heavy. It’s not impossible to pull it out, but I’m not very physically fit, and I don’t think I could pull it out many times in a row. It might damage my back.
“Is that so?”
“It feels too heavy for me. You want to try it?”
I took out another improved crossbow and handed it to Sylphy. Sylphy pulled the improved crossbow string as I did, but she seemed to pull it more easily than I did.
“It sure is tough. I guess it’s not a problem for soldiers who have been working out and are proud of their strength, but it might be difficult for ordinary citizens to pull it several times.”
“I guess so. Let’s try shooting it for now.”
The improved crossbow has a rough but round front sight that makes it easier to aim. There are no special decorations, but there are many metal parts that make it look more sturdy. When you aim, a sight marker appears separately from the crossbow’s front sight. As far as I can see, it seems to be perfectly aligned with the front sight. I pull the trigger.
Just as I heard a sharp bang, the bolt had already pierced the target log. It seemed to have a much higher initial velocity than the basic crossbow. Sylphy did the same and also hit the log.
Both of us shot several times in silence. I didn’t want to get tired, so I reloaded on command action. The command action is too broken to be able to pull this hard, improved crossbow with just my right hand.
“I see, these targets are good.”
“Yes, it is. And the higher the initial velocity, the higher the power.”
“It’s sticking pretty deep. You can’t pull it out, can you?”
“It’s hard to pull out by hand.”
I have no problem accessing it and putting it in my inventory. Sylphy chuckled at the sight of me. My abilities are really a cheat, aren’t they? I can see that, yeah.
“I think we should make a small number of these and treat them as special versions for the best shooters and the most powerful. It needs a steel leaf spring, so it uses a lot of steel.”
“Well… we should eventually use this improved model as our mainstay, but I think that’s a good direction to start.”
“Let’s go with that.”
“I guess so. By the way, are you still going to do something?”
“Eh? Yeah, I guess so. I’ve got a lot more stuff I can make, so I think I’ll try a little harder.”
“Un… I see.”
Sylphy’s ears twitched a little. What is it? What’s the matter? It’s not like she’s angry or anything, though.
Although it bothered me, I regained my composure and checked the list of craftable items in the blacksmithing facility. I’m sure the number of glass-related products has increased.
・Test Tube――Material: Glass x 1
・Beaker――Material: Glass x2
・Flask――Material: Glass x 2
・Glass Mortar――Material: Glass x 2
・Glass Pestle――Material: Glass x 1
・Distillation Equipment――Material: Glass x 8, Iron x 2
This was added to the list of things I could make at the blacksmithing facility. No matter how I look at it, it’s a pharmaceutical flag. For now, I’ll stop making iron arrowheads and reserve some iron. Surely it will be used to make the pharmaceutical workbench.
However, I don’t see anything that looks like a mixing table in the blacksmithing workbench’s crafting list. Maybe it’s in the improved workbench? So I searched all over the craftable items on the improved workbench.
・Druggist’s Mortar――Materials: Stone x 5, Wood x1
・Mixing Table――Materials: Distillation Equipment x 1, Beaker x 2, Flask x 2, Test Tube x 4, Glass Mortar x 1, Glass Pestle x 1, Druggist’s Mortar x 1, Wood x 10, Nails x 20, Iron x 4
I found it, but the materials were too heavy, or rather, too many! But I have enough glass to make it. I’m going to play around with the crafting reservation priority a bit and prioritize making the mixing table.
Speaking of which, I need to check my achievements and skills. Since I did a lot of things already… A lot of things…!
・First Time Crafting――: Crafting an item for the first time. ※Skill unlocked.
・First Time Dismantling――: First time dismantling a crafted item. ※Skill unlocked.
・First Time Collecting――: First time performing a collecting task. ※Skill unlocked.
・First Time Mining――: First time performing a mining operation. ※Skill unlocked.
・First Hunt――: Acquire a living organism material for the first time. ※Skill unlocked.
・First Repair――: Repair an item for the first time. ※Skill unlocked.
・???――: Hidden achievement.
First time dismantling and repairing wasn’t unlocked last time. It looks like there is still some simple ‘first-time’ work to be done.
・Crafting your first blacksmithing facility――: First time crafting a blacksmithing facility. ※The item creation feature is unlocked.
Oh, I imagine this item creation feature is the one with the added recipes? There’s no explanation for this feature, and it’s not as user-friendly as ever. I took a quick look at the other achievements, but I couldn’t find any that I had earned.
・Skilled Craftsman――: Crafting time is reduced by 20%.
・Disassembler――: Increased the number of materials obtained when disassembling crafted items by 10%.
・Repairer――: Reduces item repair time by 20% and reduces the number of materials required by 20%.
・Mass Producers――: Reduces the number of materials required to create 10 or more of the same item by 10%.
・Loggers――: Increased plant material intake by 20%.
★Miner――: Increased mineral material intake by 20%.
・Dismantler――: Increased living organism material intake by 20%.
Skills have also increased. Hmm, when I think about it, I should have gotten the logger when I did the mass logging last time. I’ve already got a miner, so I’ll get the logger and dismantler now.
Strong Cardiopulmonary Function: Increased stamina recovery speed by 20%.
Agility: Increased movement speed by 10%.
Strong Arm: Increased melee attack power by 20%.
Excellent Archer: Increased attack power from ranged weapons by 20%.
Iron Skin: Reduced damage taken by 20%.
Survivor – Increased health by 10%, increased health recovery speed by 20%.
Reptile’s Stomach: Reduces hunger by 20%.
Camel’s hump: Reduced dryness by 20%.
There’s no increase in physical enhancement skills. There are only three more skills I can take since my level hasn’t increased. I’ll take strong cardiopulmonary function, agility, and the excellent archer here. I think I’ll go with the crossbow and take off in one shot.
It’s time to get the materials needed for the mixing table. When I was about to head to the blacksmithing facility, Sylphy suddenly hugged me from behind. Something soft was pressed against my back.
“Uhyo! W-what’s wrong?”
“…Aren’t we going to make love?”
Sylphy murmured in a small voice. It was so small that I couldn’t hear the first part. And her breath tickled my earlobe. It’s not good. I’m starting to feel a twinge of excitement.
“You know, that… You said you wanted to go home early and make love with me, right? It’s already late at night.”
I almost came at her straightforward invitation. Okay, okay, okay. The work is a little half done, but if my cute and adorable master told me this, I, as a loyal slave, would have to respond.
I, Kosuke, will now battle! Hyahoo!