Vandalieu was finding it difficult to level up. When he had consulted the former A-class adventurer, the【Sword King】Borkus tapped his fingers against his head as he answered.
『It can’t be helped. The【Death Attribute Mage】Job is probably a specialized Job. The Dungeon you went to is Garan’s Valley and those guys are the ones you brought with you. With that being the case, I’m sure leveling up would be hard.』(Borkus)
This knowledge wasn’t something that had been properly quantified, but anyone who had progressed with their Jobs to a certain extent knew certain rules of thumb.
『You know that each Job requires different amounts of Experience Points to level up, right? Apprentice Jobs are easy to level, generic Jobs are moderately difficult and specialized Jobs are harder.』(Borkus)
As their names suggest, Apprentice Jobs are Jobs with the word「Apprentice」at the beginning of the Job Title. Basdia and Zadiris had reached level 100 for these Jobs in a matter of days; they are very easy to level up.
Generic Jobs are Jobs such as「Warrior」and「Mage」that give bonuses to a wide variety of skills.
And finally, specialized Jobs are Jobs like「Swordsman」, specialized for swordsmanship, or「Fire-Attribute Mage」and「Water-Attribute Mage」that are specialized for specific attributes.
『Since your Job is a newly-discovered one, I don’t know the details about it either. But judging from the name, I can tell that it’s a Job specialized for death-attribute magic. Still, it does seem that it provides bonuses to more skills than Jobs like【Light-Attribute Mage】and【Fire-Attribute Mage.】』(Borkus)
Apparently Jobs such as these required a lot of Experience Points to level up.
『Adventurers and even normal people only take specialized Jobs when they are aiming to become first-class in that field. With a Job like that, there’s no way you can become stronger faster than a complete novice.』(Borkus)
Apparently, this is how it was.
Incidentally, the reason Ghouls have a Rank like monsters while Vandalieu didn’t as a Dhampir despite both being races created by the goddess Vida is because of the different origins of the two races.
Races like Ghouls that possess the blood of both a monster and a goddess such as Vampires, Lamias, Scyllas and Centaurs have Ranks like monsters while also being able to gain Jobs like humans.
However, Vandalieu was a Dhampir born between a Vampire and a Dark Elf, so only a quarter of his blood originated from a monster. Because of this, he possessed a stronger constitution than humans while not having a Rank.
Borkus and the other Titans who had become Undead originated from the union between the goddess and the Colossus god Zerno, so they hadn’t possessed Ranks while alive, either.
Having decided not to be worried about his level increasing more slowly than those around him after consulting with Borkus, Vandalieu proceeded through Doran’s Aquatic Caverns.
The majority of the monsters appearing here were aquatic species. Past the fifth floor, fish-people who possessed pale limbs protruding from the bodies of fish called Sahuagin, the Flying Sharks that had been present in Talosheim’s waterways, Big Cancers* that possessed pincers large enough to cut a human in half and enormous octopuses called Killer Octopuses would appear.
Sahuagin were Rank 2 demi-human-type monsters that were called the Goblins of the sea, armed mainly with spears, but they were small-fry.
「This isn’t edible, is it?」(Vandalieu)
『I suppose they aren’t, though they might taste good if you haven’t had any food or water for three days.』(Zran)
It seemed that even their materials were Goblin-like.
They had fought Flying Sharks at the waterways of Talosheim many times, so nobody had any trouble dealing with them.
As Braga dodged the jaws of a Flying Shark, he used a Short Sword Technique martial skill, cutting deeply into the Flying Shark’s neck.
Braga had been born with a body built for agility, but it was training that had elevated that agility even higher. Braga had learned the techniques of a Scout with Zran as his instructor and gained the Short Sword Technique skill that relied on his speed more than his strength. His agility already matched that of a wild animal.
As Rank 2 monsters, the Black Goblins were the weakest among the new races created by Vandalieu, so even the weakest of the monsters in Garan’s Valley that they used for training were at least the same Rank. By fighting the monsters in there, they were able to gain large amounts of Experience Points.
As a result, his Rank had increased and now he was a Black Goblin Scout, only half a year after his birth.
『I’ve raised quite the fearsome monster, if I do say so myself.』(Zran)
「I suppose so; the Flying Shark’s head has been half-severed.」(Vandalieu)
『No, that’s not what I mean.』(Zran)
Zran had a shrewd expression, brown brows furrowed and his mouth turned upwards into a smile.
『He’s a monster Scout. He’s a monster with stronger physical abilities than a human while possessing human-level skills. There are a lot of magical beasts that have special abilities that allow them to conceal their presence and catch their enemies by surprise. But that doesn’t mean they’re smart. They’re just acting on instinct. But Braga would be able to do things like concealing his presence to tail a group of adventurers and assassinate the healer first, or infiltrating villages and towns to kidnap women and children.』(Zran)
「I see. You mean that Braga has a high potential to become a covert operative in the future.」(Vandalieu)
That was indeed a fearsome prospect. The Noble Orc Bugogan that Vandalieu had fought a difficult battle against had trained his skills to high levels. That was why Vandalieu had been forced to allow his own flesh and bone to be cut in order to win. If Bugogan had nothing but brute strength, Vandalieu wouldn’t have even allowed Bugogan to cut the tip of his smallest finger.
Braga had the potential to become a monster as threatening as Bugogan. The possibility of him catching an enemy by surprise and stabbing them in the side instead of attacking from the front was particularly fearsome.
No, what was fearsome wasn’t just Braga. It was all of the Black Goblins.
Braga was the fastest to develop among all of them, but according to Zran, all of them would increase their Ranks and become Black Goblin Scouts by the end of the year. In other words, all of the Black Goblins had the talent to be assassins and spies.
They would be a group of monsters capable of slipping past the defenses of humans to infiltrate their villages and towns. Though infiltration for long periods of time would be impossible due to their appearance, but they would at least be able to deal with the guards and open the gates from the inside to allow their comrades in.
「But you knew from the beginning that they would become fearsome when you were teaching them, didn’t you? You were the one who taught them the Short Sword Technique, after all, Zran.」(Vandalieu)
「Wait, you’re a monster as well, aren’t you? You’re an Undead.」(Vandalieu)
「You really just wanted to act cool and boast about your student, didn’t you?」(Vandalieu)
『Hahahaha, very perceptive, Holy Son!』(Zran)
「It’s just that I know how you feel because I’m a person who likes boasting myself.」(Vandalieu)
Though Vandalieu wouldn’t call himself a parent, he felt strangely old as he thought about how that tiny Braga had grown up to be so great.
It would be good if Braga became powerful enough to hunt monsters on his own and he would be a reliable ally to have if the Mirg shield-nation ever dispatched another extermination force.
「What are you talking about, King?」(Braga)
Braga was nimbly returning after retrieving some shark fins and placing the meat in a container in Sam’s carriage.
「We were saying that you’re like a ninja, Braga.」(Vandalieu)
Telling him outright would be too embarrassing, so this was the answer Vandalieu gave. But Braga and even Zran gave him puzzled looks.
「Eh, you haven’t heard of them? Even you, Zran.」(Vandalieu)
Zakkart had tried to spread knowledge and technology from his own world, so Vandalieu had thought that at least Zran would know what a ninja was. After that, the two of them began to pester Vandalieu to tell them stories about ninjas every time they stopped to rest.
Incidentally, Big Cancers and Killer Octopuses were Rank 3 and they were simply large crabs and octopuses, so they didn’t have any trouble dealing with these monsters.
Apart from the marine products that could be harvested in Doran’s Aquatic Caverns, there were also metals that could be mined. Precious metals such as gold, silver and Mythril couldn’t be found here, but they could mine tin, copper and iron.
That was why miners would slay monsters with pickaxes while digging at the walls.
Vandalieu imagined that it might be incredibly difficult to carry large quantities of heavy ores outside the Dungeon, but it seemed that the metal originating in the Dungeon formed in large lumps. Even the purity was high enough that it could simply be used to make metal goods and armor straight away.
Upon learning this, Vandalieu had thought, “Other worlds are so convenient.”
This was why Talosheim had blacksmiths but no smelters to turn ores into masses of metal.
After greeting the miners who were carrying these lumps of metal on their backs and taking a break to eat food with them, Vandalieu’s party continued their journey to clear the Dungeon.
From the sixth floor onwards, Rank 4 monsters began to appear alongside the Rank 3 ones.
Squid monsters that could change the color of its own body to conceal itself to attack its enemies by surprise, Chameleon Squids.
Monsters that appeared to be one-and-a-half-meter-long lobsters that had sharp claws that were like bladed weapons, Blade Shrimp.
Monsters that looked like beautiful flowers on first glance but actually secreted paralyzing venom and possessed countless tentacles, Shark-eating Anemones.
These were just a little problematic.
Braga’s【Intuition】and【Detection】skills as well as Vandalieu’s【Danger Sense: Death】let them immediately know where monsters were hiding.
And though it wasn’t like Garan’s Valley, they had more than enough strength to get through.
With incredible force and enough speed to cut the air itself, Zran sliced the Blade Shrimp clean in two. He was just like a berserker as he ended its life with his short sword.
Writhing tentacles were severed by the axe swung by Vigaro’s arm that was even more flexible than them. And then the Shark-eating Anemone’s main body was sliced through as well.
It seemed as if Vigaro’s desire for battle had increased since he had become a Ghoul Berserker. Was it just in Vandalieu’s imagination?
『Bocchan, might it not be wise to stop those two? If I am not mistaken, they are supposed to be supervising you.』(Sam)
Zran as well as Vigaro in particular had high Ranks; defeating monsters that weren’t bosses in a D-class Dungeon wouldn’t gain them any reasonable amount of Experience Points.
Even if they wanted to improve their skills, their enemies were so far below them that this was nothing but a warm-up exercise for them. The enemies were simply too weak for this to be real training.
In fact, since the enemies were so much weaker, their skills and instincts would become duller instead.
So the reason the two of them were rampaging around at the front was –
「Well, they’ve been saying they’re bored.」(Vandalieu)
They had grown tired of supervising without participating in the fights.
『Well, it is rather awkward to have the two of them do nothing.』(Sam)
「We can take a break while those two are fighting, too.」(Vandalieu)
「That’s fine, but… can we really eat these?」(Kachia)
Kachia looked at the Killer Octopus legs, Blade Shrimp and sashimi made of fish and shellfish with a displeasured look on her face.
「Of course. Do the people of the Mirg shield-nation not eat octopuses and eels?」(Vandalieu)
Even on Earth, there had been countries without the culture of eating octopuses. Though he wasn’t sure if this was true, Vandalieu had also heard that there had even been ancient civilizations who absolutely could not eat it or avoided doing so for religious reasons.
With that being the case, it was possible that there was a culture of not eating eels in Lambda.
「No, there’s no eels because there’s no ocean, and octopuses are just dried meat…」(Kachia)
Apparently Vandalieu was wrong. The fact that octopuses were used as dried meat meant that they could be eaten normally. So why was Kachia hesitating? Did she simply dislike seafood?
「Then do you at least eat fish?」(Vandalieu)
「That’s not the problem! It’s raw!」(Kachia)
「Ah, that’s what it is.」(Vandalieu)
It seemed Kachia’s apprehension was due to the fact that they would be eating marine products raw. In western countries on Earth there had been dishes like carpaccio where fish and meat would be eaten raw, so Vandalieu had thought that it wouldn’t be a problem.
Did carpaccio not exist in Lambda? Or had Bellwood told everyone that eating fish raw was dangerous so that Zakkart couldn’t spread the culture of eating sushi and sashimi?
「It’s alright. Look.」(Vandalieu)
While Kachia was still apprehensive, Braga was enjoying the sashimi.
They ate eels, squid, shellfish and fish with fish sauce and wasabi. Normally soy sauce would be better than fish sauce, but soy sauce created from walnut miso and acorn miso had a questionable flavor, so they had only brought fish sauce with them.
Were the walnuts or acorns bad to use, or was there a problem with the fungus used for the fermentation process? Either way, Vandalieu really wanted soya beans.
「It’s delicious! Kachia, have some too!」(Braga)
『The combination of this tender texture with the sharp spice of the wasabi is indeed marvelous.』(Sam)
Braga encouraged Kachia with joy on his face while Sam did the same with a report on the food.
「Y-you might say that, but humans can’t eat fish raw!」(Kachia)
「Kachia, you’re a Ghoul now.」(Braga)
「Ah, that’s right! But even Ghouls can’t eat raw fish, can they?!」(Kachia)
Monsters like Goblins and Kobolds generally don’t cook their food. They feast on meat and anything else raw. Other demi-humans might roast meat on a fire at most.
But the Ghouls had been using primitive techniques such as using skewers to roast meat and baking it in leaves since before Vandalieu arrived.
Like Titans, they were a race of people created by Vida.
「But it’s alright. It’s extremely fresh and I’ve even used【Sterilization】,【Bug Killer】and【Disinfect】, so there’s nothing harmful left in it.」(Vandalieu)
Even if fungi and parasites had been present, they were all exterminated now and Vandalieu had even used the death-attribute spell【Disinfect】to remove any poison.
With this much treatment done, even poisonous mushrooms would become edible.
「I-if you’ve gone that far… Hmm? It’s delicious?」(Kachia)
Kachia’s eyes opened wide in surprise, and then she began greedily munching on the sashimi like Braga. Seeing how happy she was, Vandalieu also felt happy.
Incidentally, after Zran and Vigaro returned from their monster-hunting, Zran said,『Raw meat tastes delicious after you’ve become an Undead so I can’t help it』, as he gleefully dug into the sashimi. Vigaro on the other hand rejected the idea like Kachia had at first, saying,「Raw?! We’ll get stomachaches!」But then he began to eat after being reassured that it was safe to do so.
The mid-boss that appeared on the tenth floor was a Rank 4 Sahuagin Berserker with Rank 3 Sahuagin Pirates as subordinates. Since they didn’t yield any valuable materials, they served as training partners for Vandalieu to improve his【Unarmed Fighting】skill.
From the eleventh floor onwards of Doran’s Aquatic Caverns, Rank 4 monsters began to appear, leading groups of Rank 3 monsters. The frequency of traps also became higher.
There were pitfalls with poisoned spikes at the bottom, spears hidden amongst the stalactites in the ceilings and axes that came flying at them from the walls.
「King, there’s a trap here!」(Braga)
「That’s right. Can you disarm it?」(Vandalieu)
「I’ll give it a try! … Ah.」(Braga)
Poisonous gas was released with a hissing sound, so Vandalieu neutralized the poison with【Disinfect.】
「Sorry, I failed.」(Braga)
「It’s fine. Do your best next time.」(Vandalieu)
『… Why is it that the Holy Son who is at the back is the first to know where the traps are?』(Zran)
Depending on the types of traps, traps could be more dangerous than monsters. However, Vandalieu could detect traps that would kill with his constantly-active【Danger Sense: Death.】This allowed him to detect traps faster than Braga who was actually searching for them.
In addition, many of the traps in Doran’s Aquatic Caverns were poisonous, so he could deal with them immediately with【Disinfect.】
『With the Holy Son here, aren’t Scouts unnecessary?』(Zran)
「Don’t sulk like that. Aren’t materials and training the reasons we came here?」(Vandalieu)
That was why Vandalieu didn’t say or do anything even after detecting traps, leaving Braga to search for them.
「And I can’t detect traps that aren’t deadly. For example, a trap that spits out oil that’s hard to remove.」(Vandalieu)
『That would be more of a prank than a trap.』(Sam)
He would probably be unable to detect a trap where a blackboard duster would come falling from overhead.
『But wouldn’t it be fine to not detect those? They won’t kill you, after all.』(Zran)
「Well, that’s true.」(Vandalieu)
In a Dungeon, half of the traps were designed to kill their victims. The other half would either immobilize or apply a status effect, making it easier for monsters to kill the intruders, so Vandalieu could detect most of them.
「But you know, it’s not like I’ll be around every time.」(Vandalieu)
『I suppose you’re right.』(Zran)
And so they continued and set up camp. The next day, they finally arrived at the lowest floor.
There were apparently only ten floors two hundred years ago, but like Garan’s Valley, the number of floors had increased after being abandoned. There were now eighteen floors to journey through.
Vandalieu was able to obtain the seaweeds and skipjack tuna that he had come here for on the fifteenth floor, so this was a happy surprise for him.
When he returned to Talosheim, he would make a room for smoking food and make katsuobushi. If that was too difficult, it might still be good to use the fish after drying it like it had been in the Warring States period*.
「By the way, does this turtle spit fire or anything?」(Vandalieu)
「『It doesn’t!』」(Vigaro and Zran)
As Vandalieu asked this question with no signs of nervousness, Vigaro and Zran almost shouted in response.
The boss of Doran’s Aquatic Caverns that was waiting for them was a Rank 5 Crusher Turtle accompanied by six Rank 4 Bullet Turtles.
Bullet Turtles were turtles with one-meter-long shells at first glance, but they were problematic monsters that could withdraw their limbs into their shells and use wind-attribute magic to spin through the air at high speeds in order to perform ramming attacks.
Their shells were harder than iron; their ramming attacks would be dangerous even for heavy warriors.
The Crusher Turtle was five times larger than a Bullet Turtle, but its ramming attack wouldn’t be only five times as powerful. There were apparently numerous incidents in history where stone walls of towns were destroyed by the ramming attacks of giant turtles such as these, and it had a powerful defense as well.
They were monsters that were difficult to defeat among Rank 4 and Rank 5 monsters.
In fact, not only Braga and Kachia, but even Zran and Vigaro were having a hard time dealing with them.
「Nuh! It’s fast!」(Vigaro)
『And they’re coordinated, too!』(Zran)
With their heads withdrawn into their shells and spinning at high speeds, the turtles had begun to move in a coordinated fashion. As Vigaro made an attempt to reduce their number by one first, others attacked from the side and above him to interfere.
Half-hearted attacks would simply bounce off the spinning shells that were harder than iron.
This is where magic would come in handy, but Vigaro, Vran and Kachia couldn’t use magic.
「Leave it to me!」(Kachia)
But Kachia raised her sword and stepped forward.
「Kachia, it’s impossible!」(Braga)
「It’s not impossible!【Rapid Reaction!】」(Kachia)
Taking no notice of Braga as he tried to stop her, Kachia increased her reaction speed with a martial skill, dodged a Bullet Turtle’s attack with the bare minimum required movement and released a deadly thrust into the side of its shell.
A swordsmanship technique that increased the speed and power of a thrust. Now that Kachia had become a Ghoul, she had more physical strength than she had possessed as an adventurer. Her attack pierced the Bullet Turtle’s shell.
There was a sound of breaking metal.
Kachia’s plan fell apart along with her sword.
As she opened her eyes wide, dumbfounded, another Bullet Turtle closed in on her. She noticed it, thanks to her【Rapid Reaction.】But though the【Pierce】she used was fast and powerful, it also left a large opening. Even though she had seen it, her body couldn’t keep up.
「I’m done f –」(Kachia)
「I won’t let that happen, don’t worry.」(Vandalieu)
Though Kachia thought she was doomed, the Bullet Turtle crashed into the ground.
「Well, if I erase their Mana, they’re just huge turtles.」(Vandalieu)
The Bullet Turtles that were using wind-attribute magic to fly through the air like bullets lost their ability to fly as they were engulfed in【Magic Absorption Barriers.】They crashed with full force into the walls and into the ground.
If they had wings, perhaps they might be able to glide through the air, but all they had were flipper-shaped legs.
「The amount of Experience Points gained will decrease if I interfere, but it can’t be helped. Ah, everyone, please finish them off.」(Vandalieu)
『Sorry about that, Holy Son.』(Zran)
They dealt with the turtles by thrusting their short swords and claws into the gaps in their shells. The Crusher Turtle resisted a little by attempting to bite them, but it joined its subordinates in death with one swing of Vigaro’s axe.
「Let’s have a new sword made for you when we get back. If there’s anything nice in the treasure room, you can simply take it… What’s wrong?」(Vandalieu)
Kachia, who was sitting down with the broken sword still in her hand, had tears in her eyes.
Should Vandalieu have helped her quicker? Had he spent too long waiting to see what would happen?
As he panicked, her tears began to fall from.
「I… I’m shorry…」(Kachia)
Why was she apologizing to him?
Vandalieu wanted to ask her this question, but decided to console her instead for now.
「I felt my limits even before being captured by the Orcs… Uu… And then I became a Ghoul, but even so…」(Kachia)
「I see, so you were impatient.」(Vandalieu)
Kachia was a fast learner. She had grown strong rapidly after becoming an adventurer, catching up to her seniors… and then she had hit a wall.
It wasn’t a hard iron wall, but a soft one made of mud. It gradually became harder to level up and no matter what kind of training and battles she went through, her skills were improving at a snail’s pace. She couldn’t even imagine when her skills might level up.
“I don’t need to worry about it; the growth period for my strength has just passed. I just have to become stronger one step at a time from now on.”
Even though she told herself this, she could only see the backs of the seniors that she was supposed to have caught up to and those who started training in the same year as her left her behind. Even her juniors were catching up to her.
She suddenly felt that the stories of retired female adventurers that spread throughout the Adventurers’ Guild were real.
If Kachia had earned enough money, she might have retired in the same way. However, she had only just become a D-class adventurer and all of her money was going into her equipment, living costs and paying off the debt that her parents had left her.
Though she didn’t live extravagantly, the amount of money she had was only several months’ worth of living expenses.
She didn’t have the connections to be hired as an exclusive escort. The Mirg shield-nation didn’t employ female soldiers to fight on the frontlines, though some were used for office work.
That was why she had no choice but to continue as an adventurer, putting in hard work without knowing when it would produce results.
It wasn’t that Kachia had become weak. However, the adventurers around her had become strong and left her behind. She was unable to find decent requests to accept, the monsters in Devil’s Nests whose materials would sell for high prices were too much for her to handle and there were many cases where more skilled adventurers were already hunting them.
Perhaps it would simply be better to find a suitable man to run away with and marry.
She had been captured by Orcs while thinking this and fell into despair. She thought that she would be giving birth to a Noble Orc’s children until she died. She would have been better off dying during her adventures, even when she still had dreams to accomplish.
However, Kachia was rescued by the Ghouls and decided to become a Ghoul at Vandalieu’s suggestion.
After becoming a Ghoul, Kachia thought that she had been reborn.
She gained the【Superhuman Strength】and【Pain Resistance】skills and her Attribute Values increased. She was clearly more powerful than she had been as a human.
She could finally become stronger. She would regain her pride and her dreams. That was what she thought.
「But because everyone else was becoming stronger faster than you, you grew even more impatient.」(Vandalieu)
That was why she had grown impatient and done something like that, believing in herself.
These were Kachia’s circumstances.
Hearing this, Vigaro and Zran thought that this was where Vandalieu would scold her.
After that, Vigaro and the others went to retrieve the items in the treasure room. And all of them began the journey back to Talosheim.
Kachia and Vandalieu were sitting together on top of a Golem that Vandalieu had created. This was because Sam’s carriage was full with the harvested materials. Braga looked jealously up at them.
Vigaro didn’t understand the circumstances of humans, but he knew how it felt to be frustrated with one’s own lack of progress. However, allowing that to cause reckless behavior was not good. His death would cause the village to lose strength.
That was why Vandalieu had to scold her, even if he understood how she felt. He had to scold her and teach her so that she wouldn’t become impatient again. That was his job as a leader of the village.
「I understand how you feel. I really do.」(Vandalieu)
But Vandalieu’s words faltered.
Vigaro called his name out, wondering why he wasn’t continuing, but the words that came from Vandalieu’s mouth weren’t scolding or reprimands.
「I’ve thoroughly experienced that.」(Vandalieu)
It was sympathy. Vandalieu knew all too well why Kachia had felt impatient.
No matter how hard he had worked on Earth, his grades were just a little above average. He had always been scolded at his part-time job and he had been unable to make any friends. When he had finally participated in the school trip with the money he had saved, everyone else was having the time of their lives and he had to mask his feelings of being alienated by trying to enjoy the view.
His own worth shouldn’t change, but as others rose above him, he had felt that his own worth was decreasing relative to them.
「I still feel impatient. Among my mother’s enemies, Gordan is an old man, but judging from the sound of his voice, Heinz was still young. He’ll have grown stronger by now, but meanwhile, this is how I am.」(Vandalieu)
Heinz had been B-class back then. It had been three years, so he might have become A-class by now. Even while Vandalieu was doing this, Heinz was undoubtedly becoming even stronger.
And Amemiya Hiroto and the others who would be reincarnated here were likely undergoing high-level training and fighting in Origin right now. They wouldn’t have the【Experience gained in previous life not carried over】curse, so they would be able to make use of that training fully once they reincarnated in Lambda.
Vandalieu didn’t know whether they were serving as soldiers or agents in Origin so he could only make vague guesses as to what kinds of things they would experience, but there was a high chance that they would possess first-class skills even without their cheat-like abilities.
「So how can you stay so calm?」(Kachia)
「I intend on using any method available to me. And no matter how strong they become, they won’t be immortal.」(Vandalieu)
He would kill them, even if he had to use poison, spread diseases or catch them by surprise. He would have no qualms about making thousands of Undead and Golems to crush them to death with the strength of numbers.
He wouldn’t care if he was called a coward. In the end, he just needed to be the one to stand victorious.
As for those who would reincarnate here… Well, if they insisted on killing Vandalieu no matter what, then he had no choice but to deal with them in the same way. They wouldn’t be immortal, either.
However, he still wanted to avoid having to fight all one hundred of them. He didn’t like them; emotionally speaking, he couldn’t forgive them. But if he couldn’t defeat them in the end, all of it would be meaningless.
He would talk to them. If they apologized, he would keep his distance and watch them work hard to develop this problematic world while enjoying a comfortable life eating delicious food with everyone else. That would be more than enough as revenge for him.
「So what should I do?」(Kachia)
Kachia seemed to have calm down. Vandalieu took a moment to think before replying.
「How about leaving swordsmanship aside for now and trying some magic training? Ghoul women are supposed to have a high aptitude for magic, after all.」(Vandalieu)
She might just end up as a jack of all trades and master of none, but she was currently not making much progress so it wouldn’t be a bad thing to have more options.
「… Yes, I’ll give it a try. But what if it doesn’t work out?」(Kachia)
「If it doesn’t work out? I’ll be there to listen to you again if that time comes.」(Vandalieu)
Vandalieu felt that he was responsible for Kachia. He was the one who had suggested that she and the others become Ghouls. He had known that their previous lives would come to an end and this would be a step down a one-way road that they would never be able turn back on. That was why he thought that taking care of them was the obvious thing to do as a person, if he wanted to be considered a person.
Wanting to help others in need was how a person should act, wasn’t it? He got the feeling that everyone said that the character for “person” was one person supporting another.
「I see. You’ll be there to listen.」(Kachia)
「If magic doesn’t work out either, there are other options like becoming a specialist in making fish sauce and acorn miso.」(Vandalieu)
「Hmm, try again.」(Kachia)
「Then how about becoming a maid with Saria and Rita?」(Vandalieu)
「A maid, huh… Well, let’s go with that for now.」(Kachia)
Why did she add,「for now?」Could it be that she wanted to be a maid in the past? Was her childhood dream to become a maid leader?
「Mhmm, I’ve found my motivation. I don’t know how far I can go, but I’ll do my best with magic as soon as we get back!」(Kachia)
Leaving that aside, it was a relief to see that she had recovered.
「Basdia has a rival now.」(Vigaro)
『This is good, isn’t it? Heroes are supposed to be popular with the women.』(Zran)
「I want to be popular too, like Berg.」(Braga)
… Had Vandalieu raised some kind of flag?
Vandalieu didn’t care, since he was looking forward to making miso soup with kombu and dashi.
As a human, Kachia possessed moderate strength for a D-class adventurer. But she had the flaw of having no skills other than swordsmanship, and hitting a wall in her growth made her feel even worse about not making progress.
She has gained passive skills after turning into a Ghoul and her Attribute Values have increased under the effect of Vandalieu’s【Strengthen Followers】, but the way she fought as a human is unable to make use of them and display her strength.