Here’s the chapter, enjoy~
Chapter 10 – I Tried To Defeat The Danger Level S-Rank
The next morning was a pleasant, sunny day.
There are four seasons in this world as well, and a solar calendar with 365 days in a year is used.
It is now the end of September. I opened the window and felt a cool autumn breeze blowing in.
I stretched and got ready for the day.
I will be going out of the city today, and I might have to fight a monster so I would need protective gear.
I opened my [Item Box] and selected the Armored Bear Armor and one more thing.
──The Black Spider’s Gauntlet.
It’s a black gauntlet.
It was created by dismantling the corpse of the Black Spider and then creating it from the parts.
There are two effects that come with it:《Magic Absorption S+》and《Black Spider Thread EX》.
The《Magic Power Absorption S+》raises the defensive performance of the gauntlet, and if it is hit by an attack imbued with magic power, it can absorb it as its own magic power.
The《Black Spider Thread EX》has a special effect: it consumes the magic power to refine a sticky spider thread that can be used to restrain the enemy.
I was once given a town quest to perform a night patrol and it was helpful in apprehending burglars.
I checked my appearance in front of the mirror. I’ve adjusted my sleeping habits and shaved. My armor and gauntlet were spotless.
All set, let’s go.
Outside the inn, the morning sun greeted me dazzlingly. The cloudless sky was refreshing.
There’s plenty of time before the scheduled meeting time, so I decided to have breakfast at the Golden Bear Restaurant.
Today, I decided on the local chicken egg sandwich. The egg roll was thick, and the sweet flavor spreaded onto my palate as I bit into it. It was delicious.
As I was about to leave the restaurant, I was approached by the owner, Oyaji-san.
“It’s you, huh, bear brother? Are you going on a quest outside the city today?”
“Yeah, something like that.”
“Then take this with you. You need it for lunch, right?”
Oyaji-san handed me a square package. It was about the size of a lunch box and felt warm.
“You don’t have to pay for it. You’ve always been a big help to me, so I’m giving you a special bonus to show my gratitude. But in return, you have to come back another time and help me prepare the food again.”
“Okay. I’ll see if I can find another opportunity to do your town quest.”
“All right then. Good luck.”
Oyaji-san saw me off and I left the Golden Bear Restaurant.
I arrived at the Adventurer’s Guild at exactly 8:30 a.m.
Adventurers were gathering in the lobby. However, I couldn’t find Iris among them.
Well, there’s still thirty minutes until the meeting time. I’m just too early. But that didn’t mean that I came early for nothing.
I turned my attention to the counter and saw Milia sitting there.
She is the author of the Adventurer’s guidebook and knows a lot about the city of Aunen and its surroundings. I wonder if she knows anything about the underground city.
“Good morning, Kou-san! As I expected, that armor really suits you!”
“Thank you. By the way, Milia, there is one thing I want you to ask you. Do you have a minute?”
“Yes, yes, what is it? I’ll tell you as much as I can about the Adventurer’s Guild, the truth of the world, and my private secrets.”
I know what she said about the truth of the world is a joke, but can I really ask about her private secrets?
But I decided to ask a serious question.
When I asked about the underground city, I got this answer.
“You’re fascinated by the romance of ancient civilizations, aren’t you? Men love that kind of thing, don’t they? I think it’s very cute that you act like an adult but still have the heart of a boy!”
I don’t really get it, but I guess that’s the difference between men and women.
“I think there is a high possibility that an underground city exists in the vicinity of Aunen. And the scholar of the royal capital is also regularly investigating it. Are you going to search for an underground city today, Kou-san?”
“…How did you know?”
“My instincts are often right. Personally, I think that the Cello Forest in the southeast is suspicious. What do you think of my speculation? It might even be right! …Huh? What’s wrong, Kou-san? You look like an Armored Bear with an acorn thrown at his face.”
Is that the otherworldly version of the so-called “A pigeon shot with a pea-shooter” look?
[T/n: The phrase “A pigeon shot with a pea-shooter” is a Japanese idiom that means a look of shock, staring with wide eyes and an open mouth. In Japanese, the phrase is 鳩が豆鉄砲を食ったよう (Hato ga mamedeppou o kutta you).]
Anyway, I was more than a little surprised. In any case, the entrance to the underground city indicated by [Auto Mapping] is, of course, in Cello Forest. A woman’s intuition can never be underestimated…
* * *
According to Milia, if we find the entrance to the underground city, we should inform the Adventurer’s Guild. Apparently, there is a considerable amount of money at stake.
As I left the counter, Iris arrived just in time.
The time was 8:45 a.m., and there were still fifteen minutes until our meeting time.
“Good morning, Kou. I thought I was early, but you were earlier than me.”
“It’s a habit of mine. I’m always here at this time, after all. Shall we go then?”
“Yeah, please take care of me today. …Huh? Kou, did you buy a new gauntlet for your arm?”
Iris said, looking at the Black Spider’s gauntlet.
“No, I made this one myself.”
“You made it yourself? …That’s amazing. You could sell it for a lot of money if you wanted to.”
“Do you know about it, then?”
“I’m an A-rank adventurer, after all. I’m confident that I have a good eye for weapons and armor. …Could it be that you used the Black Spider as material?”
“That’s right. If you give it your magic power, you can also make spider silk.”
“You mean it’s not only a protective gear but also a magic tool?”
It was only when I was told that I realized it, but it is true. I wonder if I’ve unknowingly created a ridiculous item.
“Kou, are you also a top-notch craftsman…?”
“It’s not me that’s amazing; it’s my skills.”
“Your skills are part of you, aren’t they? I know you are humble, but I think you should be more proud of that.”
This feeling is unique to the other world, I should say. If I’m going to continue to live here, I’ll have to come to terms with it little by little.
Today’s destination is the light dot on [Auto Mapping], which is located in the Cello Forest.
We decided to leave Aunen through the south gate and head east along the city road.
Near the city walls, the dwarves were working on expanding the city, and when I walked by, they said, “Good morning, Bear Killer!” or “Are you on a quest? Good luck with that!”
“Kou, you’re quite popular, aren’t you?”
Iris muttered with a chuckle.
“I’ve heard rumors about you everywhere I go in the city lately. You’ve been working pretty hard on your town quest, haven’t you?”
“I don’t like to skimp on my work.”
“I think that’s a good attitude. Adventurers must be trustworthy, and no matter how good you are, if you’re always untrustworthy, you’ll never get a job.”
“Alright, I’ll keep that in mind. That’s important advice from a senior, after all.”
“Even though I’m your senior, it seems like you’ve already surpassed me in terms of ability. …Well, I have a good amount of knowledge and experience, and if you have any questions, you can always ask me.”
“I have one question for you then.”
“What is it?”
“Where do monsters come from, and how do they come to be?”
Lonely wolves have males and females, and they reproduce like animals. So what about Armored Bears and Black Spiders?
The [Appraisal] didn’t give any information about males or females, but is it just an omission, or does gender not exist? I’m curious.
“Monster is basically generated spontaneously. However, it seems that some species can have children.”
According to Iris’s explanation, monsters spontaneously appear in places where there is a high concentration of magical elements.
In the case of the Lonely Wolf, however, there are two types of individuals: those born spontaneously and those born through breeding activities.
“This is just a rumor, but it seems that if a Lonely Wolf has procreated for many generations, it will revert to its ancestors form and become a powerful individual.”
“Do Lonely Wolves have ancestors?”
“Yes. Fenrir, a legendary monster from mythology. The Lonely Wolf is said to be related to it.”
Fenrir is a monster from Norse mythology, and it’s one of the most popular fantasy monsters. I guess they exist in this world, too. I wonder if their fur is fluffy after all.
As I let my imagination run wild, it wasn’t long before we arrived at the Cello Forest.
I activated [Auto Mapping] and checked the map. The light spot was marked about a kilometer to the southeast from here. So let’s go there.
We didn’t encounter any monsters along the way, and the sun was shining brightly, so it felt like a picnic.
After a while, we came to an open area.
There, at the bottom of a sheer cliff, a rugged rock face awaited us.
“Kou, are we almost there?”
“Yes, we are. There should be an entrance to an underground city near here.”
[Auto Mapping] is still in effect. A semi-transparent window automatically follows me as I walk. The point of light on the map was just shining at the cliff.
“What do you think of this?”
“Is there a hidden door somewhere in the cliff? Let’s look around a bit.”
Iris tapped the rock wall with her right hand. She’s probably listening to the echoes of the sound and looking for anything strange.
I’ll try it too.
I activate the Armored Bear Armor’s granted effect…《Hearing Enhancement A》 and pay attention to even the smallest differences in sound.
Knock, knock, tut…
Hmm? I heard a strange sound just now.
At the place where I knocked, there was a rock about two times larger than my body. The shape is a vertical rectangle. I held both the left and right edges with my hands and used《Monstrous Strength S+》to pull it out a little toward me.
Could this be the entrance to the underground city?
But the large rock in front of me was heavy. It was just so heavy. It was like a lump of steel.
It’s hard to move, and I don’t think I can break it with the weapons I have.
I’m in trouble…
When I’m struggling, Iris notices it and calls out to me.
“Kou, what’s wrong?”
“I found a suspicious place. But the rocks are blocking it.”
“How about you put it in your [Item Box]?”
I shouted out loud.
Let’s do it right away.
As it turned out, it worked.
After storing the large rock in my [Item Box], I found a metal door hidden behind it.
It glittered as if it was storing the sun’s rays, and it radiated a faint heat.
“This warmth, could it be the orichalcum…?”
Iris muttered next to me.
Orichalcum is a name often heard in fantasy games and anime.
It can be used as a material for the strongest equipment in some works. What kind of position does it have in this world?
“Orichalcum is a very rare metal.”
As if sensing my inner thoughts, Iris gave me an explanation.
“It’s one of the best in terms of both physical and magical defense, but its processing technology was lost with the collapse of ancient civilizations. At least with today’s technology, it would be impossible to make a door like this.”
“So you’re saying that this door is a legacy of an ancient civilization?”
“That’s very likely. According to your map, this must be the entrance to the underground city, right?”
I looked through the translucent window and saw that the point of light was aligned with the door.
“Let’s go inside for now.”
…I said, but the surface of the door was flat, and there was no door knob or handle.
How do we open it?
A little lower than my eye line, there were some kind of alphabet-like letters engraved on the surface.
After looking at it for a while, [Full Assist] was activated, and I was able to read it.
“──May the spirit bless you, one who comes from a distant land…”
Right after I muttered that, the text disappeared, and I could hear a voice in my head.
…Status check complete. Welcome to No. 0 Underground City, [Transmigrator] Kou Kousaka-sama.
In order to determine whether or not to grant you the right to master the underground city, we will now begin a quick test.
What the hell is it talking about?
As I was tilting my head, Iris raised her voice.
“Kou, behind you!”
When I turned around, I saw that something strange was happening about fifteen meters away from here.
A magic circle that looked like a combination of circles and triangles was floating on the ground, and something was rising from it.
It was a mechanical giant.
It wore a full-face helmet on its head, and its large physique reminded me of a Roman gladiator. It was about three meters tall, and its entire body was wrapped in golden metal.
Could it possibly be made of orichalcum?
If that’s the case, it will be a troublesome enemy… let’s use [Appraisal] on it…
Orichalcum Golem: A giant humanoid ancient magic weapon. It is equipped with armor made of orichalcum and has a rapid-fire magic laser cannon in its right eye. It boasts the highest level of performance in both offense and defense.
A bad premonition always comes true, but I hoped it would not be this time.
This one is backed up against a cliff, so to speak, and is cornered.
In the head of the Orichalcum Golem, two red eyes flashed with a cold glow.
From its whole body, a low, roaring vibrating motor sound resonates.
“──Target confirmed, begin elimination.”
When the electronic voice was sounded, it began to move awkwardly with a creaking sound.
“…I’ll act as a decoy. Kou, at least you should escape.”
Iris took out a large spear from her pouch and took up a fighting stance.
Her face was tight and dignified, and she had an awe-inspiring beauty.
“The Orichalcum Golem has a danger level of S, one level above the Black Spider. I fought one once before, and it took 20 A-rank adventurers to defeat it. The two of us wouldn’t stand a chance.”
“I wonder about that.”
I took out the Hikino wooden sword from my [Item Box] and held it in my right hand.
“You have to try everything to know. I’ll think about whether or not to run away later. In the first place, abandoning someone and surviving alone would be too bad of an aftertaste.”
Iris was about to say something, but as if to interrupt her, the Orichalcum Golem began to attack.
Its right eye shines brightly, and a red ray of… magic laser is released.
At that moment, I felt as if a switch was flipped in my brain. My concentration was raised to the limit, and time was stretched to infinity with the acceleration of my thoughts.
I had been in the same state during the battle with the Black Spider, but it seems that when we are in danger of death, we are able to perform at a higher level than usual.
Right now, I have the Black Spider’s gauntlet on my arm.
The《Magic Power Absorption S+》that comes with it should be useful.
I activated my [Dexterity] and thrust my left arm out in front of me. I bent my elbow and took a defensive stance.
The magic laser struck the Black Spider’s gauntlet ── and it disappeared as if it had been sucked straight into it.
Of course, I took no damage.
I can do this!
“I’m fine. But tell me. How’d you beat it last time?”
“You had to aim for its eyes. That part of the eye isn’t protected by the orichalcum.
“That means we have a chance if we get close enough.”
The Orichalcum Golem unleashes more magic lasers, but as long as I have the Black Spider’s gauntlet, I won’t take any damage. I used [Dexterity] to block all of them completely.
“I’ll be the shield. Iris, I’ll prevent the attacks, so you should aim at its eyes.”
“…I don’t see any other way. Okay.”
Iris nodded. Her crimson eyes had a sharp glint of determination in them.
“If we can win this, it means that you are as strong as nineteen A-rank adventurers.”
“It’s a very interesting development. …Let’s go.”
I start running. Iris follows behind me.
The Orichalcum Golem’s magic lasers don’t seem to be able to fire in rapid succession, and there were several seconds between each shot.
I blocked all of them with my Black Spider’s gauntlet and closed the distance between us. Eventually, when the distance between us had been reduced to about five meters, I shouted.
“I’m on it!”
In response to my call, Iris jumped out from behind me. Her supple feet kicked the ground, and she leaped high into the air. Her long red hair spread out softly.
It was a desperate attack that carried all her weight and speed.
The thrusting spear crushes the right eye of the Orichalcum Golem and makes its huge body cower.
But… it was too shallow!
As soon as the Orichalcum Golem steps on the spot, it immediately regains its stance and tries to slam its right arm into Iris.
“I can’t let you do that!”
I pointed my left arm at the Orichalcum Golem and focused on shooting the thread.
《Black Spider Thread EX》is activated, and the sticky spider thread entangles the Orichalcum Golem’s body and right arm.
The right arm didn’t move properly as it tried to swing down, and the Orichalcum Golem lost its posture significantly.
I took up Hikino’s wooden sword and jumped at the Orichalcum Golem.
The thrust was almost like a physical attack. The wooden sword pierced the Orichalcum Golem’s left eye and went straight into the head.
I let go of the wooden sword and moved away.
There was no… counterattack by the Orichalcum Golem.
Sparks were buzzing from the head, and eventually, the internal driving noise diminished. It fell to its knees on the ground and collapsed.
It never moved again.
“Kou, did we win…?”
Iris muttered and readied her spear.
I also took out a spare wooden sword from my [Item Box].
Just then, I hear an inorganic voice in my brain.
Your HP and MP have been increased, and your physical abilities have been improved.
I’ve leveled up, which apparently means we’ve defeated the Orichalcum Golem.
The message in my head continues further.
The quick test has been completed — confirmed achievement of defeating the Orichalcum Golem. [Transmigrator] Kou Kousaka is granted mastership of the No. 0 underground city.
Well, I don’t know what that means, but does that mean I’m now the owner of an underground city?
As I was thinking about this, the huge body of the Orichalcum Golem disappeared in a flash.
It seems that the [Automatic Collection] has been activated.
When I checked the [Item Box], I found that the “Orichalcum Golem (Failure) x 1” had been added.
…However, Iris has no idea about the [Automatic Collection], so she is puzzled by the disappearance of the Orichalcum Golem.
“The Orichalcum Golem disappeared…? What happened…?”
I think it would be better if I explained this to her. When I explained about the [Automatic Collection], Iris raised her voice in question.
“Wait a minute. How many skills do you have in total, Kou? You already have four skills: [Item Box], [Automatic Collection], the map skill, and the item creation skill. But at most, one should only have three skills.”
“Even if you say so…”
I don’t understand it either.
I have a lot of skills, and moreover, these skills are increased by leveling up when they should not be acquired.
All of this doesn’t fit in with the common sense of this world.
“…well, it’s not the first time that Kou is out of the norm. But who exactly are you? Although you look like a human, you are clearly beyond the reach of the human race… Are you actually a messenger of the Gods?”
“I’m nothing special, just an ordinary guy with a lot of skills.”
“If you were a normal human, you would have used me as a decoy to escape. …oh, by the way, I haven’t thanked you yet.”
Iris put her spear back in her pouch and turned to me. Her crimson eyes stare straight at me.
“Thank you for protecting me, Kou. Thanks to you, I survived.”
“I’m the one who should be thanking you. I might not have been able to win on my own.”
“Neither could I have won alone, you know? …We were perfectly in-synch; we could have made a great pair.”
Iris’s mouth broke into a slight smile.
Seeing that smile was probably the best thing about this battle.