“So I’ve made a new Undead,” Vandalieu announced.
“Congratulations!” Saria exclaimed. “It is the first time you have made an Undead that other than insects and dinosaurs since you created us, isn’t it?”
“Wah, I’m happy that we’re going to get a kouhai!” said Rita.
Bone Chimera gave a cry for attention.
“Knochen, you were transformed rather than created, so you’re a little different, aren’t you?” said Saria.
Incidentally, Bone Chimera’s name was Knochen, which means “bone” in German.
“In any case, this is an auspicious event,” said Sam.
The new person(?) was quietly unveiled before Saria and the others.
Vandalieu had decided to create Undead from the corpses of Mikhail’s companions.
He thought that even without the original spirits of the bodies, he could make Undead who would be powerful right from the beginning if he used the bodies of a hero’s companions and a large amount of Mana as the materials.
First, Vandalieu used the female mage’s corpse that was the least damaged as a base. He would use brown-skinned female warrior’s head to replace the missing head. Fortunately, they weren’t too different in size.
He cut off the lower jaw that was remaining on the mage, making sure to get the cutting angle right, and then attached the head of the female warrior.
However, below the female mage’s neck, certain hard-to-see parts of her body had broken bones and torn muscles. Organ damage to some extent wouldn’t cause any problems if Vandalieu was turning her into a Zombie, but since the state of the stomach would affect the Zombie’s experience gain, he wanted to have everything in a clean state if possible.
Vandalieu had heard on Earth that focusing on the interior was the secret to creating a good product.
However, the female warrior’s body had been torn to pieces; there were no parts of her body apart from her head that were intact. This also went without saying for the other corpses.
Thus, Vandalieu decided to go to the ruins of the Adventurers’ Guild to get a supply of monster organs.
He used Golem Transmutation to change the shapes of sturdy Trihorn horns to use as bones, replaced the liver and kidneys with those of a Hydra and replaced the lungs with the resized lungs of a plesiosaur, a creature that appeared occasionally in Doran’s Aquatic Caverns.
And because he wanted a companion with the ability to fly, he attached the wings of a pterosaur to the mage’s back. This proved to be very difficult; he had to conduct a major surgery in which he altered the shape of the mage’s shoulder blades and created the musculature needed to move the wings from muscle fibers and tendons he had taken from the Ogre.
Also, he decided to have a tail growing from the tailbone. To that tail, he attached the stinger and venom gland of a Cemetery Bee that had died of old age, and added the venom glands of a Venom Wyvern, a Hydra and a Shark-eating Anemone so that it would be able to choose which venom it would inject its victim with.
And then he replaced the arms from the elbow down and legs from the knees down with parts from the Ogre. Wouldn’t this result in greater strength?
As the female mage lacked the muscles to support this body, he took the necessary muscles from the female warrior and the Ogre while replacing the parts of her skin that had been burned with the female warrior’s. Finally, he inserted the Magic Stones of monsters into her body.
“And so this what I built as a result,” said Vandalieu.
There was a faint, groaning sound.
The female Zombie, who Vandalieu had named Rapiéçage, emerged from below a cover. The name meant ‘patching’ to Vandalieu’s knowledge. It was a word that had been used in Origin, so the actual fine meaning might be a little different.
She had the beautiful face of a girl of an age in between being a child and an adult, combined with the mature, well-trained body of a warrior with feminine curves. But the limbs below the elbows and knees were those of an Ogre, powerful enough to easily crush a person’s skull.
Membranous wings sprouted from her back, and a serpent-like tail with the stinger of a bee extended from her hips. Her skin was a mixture of pale skin, brown skin and the dark green skin of an Ogre joined together by stitches, giving her a strange beauty that could be called the beauty of the afterlife.
At first glance, she appeared to be a beautiful and yet strange, unidentifiable Zombie.
And her Status was as follows:
Her specs were quite high. She had great regenerative abilities because Vandalieu had given her the organs of a Hydra, and she was capable of switching between paralyzing venom, neurotoxic venom or hemorrhage-inducing venom. And perhaps because the female mage or the female warrior had possessed them, or perhaps for some other unknown reason, she possessed resistance against both physical and magical attacks.
She had also inherited the Ogre’s Superhuman Strength at level 1.
The unexpected thing was that she possessed Electrify, a skill likely possessed by Trihorns. She had probably acquired the skill because Vandalieu had used their horns in her bones. Touching her carelessly would result in a numbing shock.
Because Vandalieu had used parts of the Ogre’s limbs, the female mage who was the base of the Zombie had become slightly taller than before and appeared to have poor balance, but overall, Vandalieu’s craftsmanship wasn’t bad.
“She’s quite muscular, as would be expected,” Saria observed. “She is also quite voluptuous.”
“If I made her thin, she wouldn’t be able to control her movements, would she?” said Vandalieu. “And anyway, muscles are power.”
“I’m sure Gubamon would feel bitter about this. After all, even if they were nameless, you have stolen the corpses of a hero’s companions from him, Bocchan!” exclaimed Rita.
“It is indeed quite pleasant to imagine what kind of expression he would have,” Vandalieu said in agreement. “Though I’ve never seen Gubamon’s face before,” he admitted.
She was Rank 4 to begin with, ready to fight, and she was versatile. Though she would need to train as she did not possess any martial-type skills, the experiment had been a huge success.
On top of that, she could even inflict emotional damage upon Vandalieu’s future enemy.
“She is wonderful, Vandalieu-sama,” said Eleanora, her eyes moist with emotion. “Not only can you combine multiple corpses, you can even draw out their original functions! You are already capable of doing the same things as Gubamon and Tenecia!”
“I see. I’m still only able to do the same things as them…”
As to be expected of beings who had lived for a hundred thousand years. It seemed that they were still a step ahead even when it came to the creation of Undead. They likely knew methods and secrets that were still unknown to Vandalieu.
Vandalieu didn’t know when he would face them, but he decided to make sure to ask them before breaking their souls.
Rapiéçage let out a groan, and then a biting noise.
“Y-you bastard! Don’t eat Vandalieu-sama!” shouted Eleanora.
Rita laughed. “Rapiéçage is being spoiled by Bocchan.”
“It seems to be a playful bite,” said Sam.
“It kinda feels a bit painful for a playful bite –” Vandalieu began to say, but then Knochen made a noise. “Wait, Knochen, stop it!”
As if provoked by the way Rapiéçage was munching on Vandalieu’s arm, Knochen began pressing its monkey and wolf heads against him as well.
These events made Vandalieu decide not to make any plans to produce Zombies in large numbers in the near future. He knew that he wasn’t quite in the predicament that Dr. Frankenstein was in, but having large numbers of Zombies biting him playfully would be painful indeed.
【You have acquired the Surgery skill!】
Vandalieu made Rapiéçage train its Unarmed Fighting Technique in battle while he distributed Orichalcum equipment to everyone else.
And in order to become more experienced with Golem Transmutation as well as to be better prepared against the Vampires, he began repairing the city’s defense installations. The Mirg shield-nation had been sloppy when it came to destroying them, and the installations themselves hadn’t degraded over the past two hundred years.
So fortunately, Vandalieu was able to repair them using Golem Transmutation. The Vampires would never dream that they would have been repaired, so they were certain to become an ace up his sleeve.
Meanwhile, numerous Dragons were fought. Borkus engaged in multiple fierce battles against Storm Dragons, Vigaro fought fiery battles against Burst Ogres that were mutant Ogres emitting flames from all over their bodies, and Zadiris fought battles of magic against Great Treants, tree-type monsters that could cast spells.
These were very profitable in terms of both materials and Experience Points. Storm Dragon sashimi went well with wasabi, Burst Ogre hides could be used in heat-resistant armor and Great Treant lumber could be turned into good staves.
The greatest find of all was the discovery of wild garlic.
As it was wild garlic, the smell was harsher than cultivated garlic, so Vandalieu decided to use death-attribute magic to apply selective breeding to it.
“I suppose I’ll have to make items that can remove bad breath… I have a feeling it would be easier to make Magic Items with the Deodorization spell than to produce mint goods,” said Vandalieu.
“You’re going to make Magic Items just to remove bad breath?” asked Basdia.
“Isn’t that pretty luxurious?” asked Borkus.
“Bocchan, even noblemen don’t have Magic Items like that, you know?” said Saria.
“It’s a luxury, is it…? Right, I’ll definitely make it then,” Vandalieu decided.
And so he began his work to cultivate garlic and produce Magic Items to remove bad breath.
By the time the season could truly be called summer, there had been numerous developments.
First, the cultivation of garlic was going incredibly well. With the soil of Talosheim that was a semi-Devil’s Nest and manure that Vandalieu had created with Fermentation, the garlic was growing with incredible vigor. The garlic could be harvested as often as once a week.
As a result of selective breeding, garlic the same size as the garlic used on Earth with less of a smell had been produced. But the nutritional value and the main components probably wouldn’t change… or so Vandalieu thought. That was what he felt after examining it with magic, but since he didn’t have proper equipment for examining it, he couldn’t say for sure that this was the case.
Garlic was added as another flavoring commodity at the ruins of the Adventurers’ Guild, and the demand for fish sauce decreased ever so slightly.
Vandalieu had also successfully created Magic Items to remove bad breath. They were large and barrel-shaped. Water stored in them would turn into gargling water that possessed the effects of Deodorization and Sterilization.
These were placed in the city’s plazas, every bathhouse and all the main buildings. The people would take water from these barrels to wash their hands and rinse their mouths after eating.
Braga’s Rank increased and he became a Black Goblin Ninja.
After hearing about ninjas from Vandalieu, Braga had used those stories as a basis for his training and pestered the blacksmith Datara to make him shurikens, kunais and curved swords resembling ninja’s katanas. After he leveled up and some time had passed, he had become a magnificent monster bearing the title of Ninja.
Even Vandalieu was surprised by this. He hadn’t expected Braga to become Lambda’s first ninja after listening to his stories that almost certainly contained fictional elements.
This was likely the result of the Black Goblins’ incredible physical abilities and, more importantly, their characteristically quick development.
“King, I can fly like this! Nin-nin!*” Braga looked to be enjoying himself as he hopped around, each of his jumps being over five meters high.
Would he be the first in the world to acquire the Ninjutsu skill, summon giant toads or transform into things like special effects in movies? … After talking to him, Vandalieu got the feeling that he’d be able to do any of them.
“I can’t lose either!” For some reason, Zran, the Undead Titan who was Braga’s Scout instructor, was getting fired up as well. He was training to become a ninja as well, so it was possible that the birth of Lambda’s second ninja was close.
One day, the Anubis Zemedo and the Ghouls led Vandalieu to a corner of the city where a tree was growing, bearing blue fruits the size of babies’ heads. He had seen this fruit numerous times in the Devil’s Nest forest.
“King, there’s a Kobol tree growing here!” said Zemedo.
Even in Devil’s Nests, Kobol trees normally only grew where Kobolds lived. But there was a Kobol tree growing here.
“These blue things are Kobol fruits, huh. It’s my first time seeing them,” said Memediga.
“Can you really eat them?” asked Zemedo. “They’re really blue.”
There were no Kobolds nearby, so the two of them were seeing Kobol fruits for the first time and were bewildered by their color.
However, the reason Kobol trees were growing was clearly because the Anubises were present. As there wasn’t a single Kobold in the city, there was no other explanation.
Vandalieu hadn’t thought that Anubises could cause Kobol trees to grow.
“Thinking about it another way, the reason the Kobol trees haven’t grown up until now has been there weren’t many Anubises considering they city’s size, or maybe just by chance,” said Vandalieu. “Or maybe a Kobol seed from a fruit eaten by someone who ventured far away dropped here by chance. Well, there’s no use in thinking about it too much,” he concluded.
What was certain was that Kobol trees that didn’t grow outside of Devil’s Nests were growing in Talosheim, and that their fruit could be eaten.
“But it’s still small, King,” said Zemedo.
“Indeed it is,” said Vandalieu.
The Kobol tree was still only a meter and a half tall, and it hadn’t even produced ten fruits yet.
There weren’t enough.
“Hmm, let’s try supplying it with Mana for now,” Vandalieu decided.
In Devil’s Nests, even normal plant life grew faster than usual, not just monsters. This was due to the Mana contaminating the soil.
With that being the case, would the growth of the Kobol trees be accelerated if Vandalieu deliberately provided more Mana to the soil?
With this idea in mind, Vandalieu discharged a large amount of Mana into the soil around the tree and, while he was at it, he also applied the fertilizer he had created with Fermentation.
The next day, the Kobol tree was over three meters tall and there were dozens of fruit growing on it.
Not only that, but there were more Kobol trees growing around it.
Getting carried away by this success, Vandalieu decided to cultivate trees of other fruits in different places.
The space between the first and second outer walls didn’t have a single building there yet, so he planted seeds for various fruits including acorns and walnuts to begin his experiment here.
He used Out-of-body Experience to branch his arms out like tentacles, combined with his physical body and used Mana Transfer on the ground. Holding nothing back, he poured Mana into the soil starting in the morning, straight through the afternoon all the way into the evening. He had recovered some Mana in between, so he had ended up pouring perhaps about 300,000,000 Mana into the ground.
This was because the number of spells he could cast at once had increased due to the Long-distance Control and Multi-Cast skills.
However, the next day, nothing had changed.
Thinking that Mana alone didn’t work, he applied his handmade fertilizer and then poured his Mana into the ground.
“If this goes well, we can eat all kinds of fruits every day. When I go to the Orbaume Kingdom, I can bring back rare fruits and seeds… Talosheim will become a kingdom of fruits… Fufufufu.” With these ambitions rising up within him, Vandalieu poured 300,000,000 Mana into the ground today as well.
And the next day, Vandalieu headed to the site of his experiment expecting trees to have grown, only to find that they had grown beyond his expectations.
“Wow, I’ve done something incredible, if I do say so myself,” he remarked.
Vandalieu made sure there was no poison in the fruits just in case, then headed straight back to the city to report the results of his experiment.
“Oh, how wonderful!” exclaimed Nuaza. “Holy Son, you have recreated the legends of Vida, who was said to have transformed the barren wastelands into lush forests for the sake of the people! This is a miracle! Truly divine work!”
“No, no, it’s not a miracle or divine work. I’m a person, after all,” said Vandalieu.
“But it really is amazing,” Darcia told him. “I’m sure you’d be able to turn even deserts into forests, Vandalieu.”
“Mom, it took me two days to create a single thicket,” Vandalieu reminded her.
“That’s plenty fast enough. Forests normally take hundreds or thousands of years to form, after all.”
Not everyone had gone mad with excitement and religious fanaticism like Nuaza, but everyone did give Vandalieu moderate praise, putting him in a good mood.
“What is this flower used for?” asked Basdia.
“It is a Defeat flower,” replied Zadiris. “If I recall, the boy said oil can be taken from this tree’s seeds.”
This flower was similar to camellias, and until now, there hadn’t been large amounts of this flower available. It had been named the Defeat flower because when the flower fell from the tree, it resembled the severed head of a general who had been defeated in battle falling to the ground. The tree provided them with oil.
The fruit that formed after the flowers fell could be steamed and squeezed to produce oil that could be used as fuel or food.
There wasn’t much demand for lighting in Talosheim as its inhabitants possessed the Night Vision skill that allowed them to read just fine with just the moonlight, or the Dark Vision skill that let them see in complete darkness as if it were the middle of the afternoon. But Vandalieu had actually wanted oil to use in food.
“With this, I can make tempura and suage*, and also mayonnaise…”
It was possible to take oil from acorns, but the demand for acorn powder had been greater, and taking lard from Orcs and other monsters took more time and effort than extracting it from plants. So now he could make foods and flavorings that he had been unable to make before –
“Bocchan, isn’t that tree moving?” asked Rita.
“Eh? No way, there’s no way a tree would move, right?” said Vandalieu, coming back from his delicious fantasies that had spread its wings to look at the tree that she was pointing at. But a moment later, he was perplexed. “Huh? Was there a tree in that spot when we first came here?”
Right before Vandalieu’s eyes, the tree’s roots moved like legs to produce a sluggish motion.
“… It did move, didn’t it?” he said.
“It does seem like it moved,” said Zadiris in agreement.
“See, I told you it moved, didn’t I!” exclaimed Rita.
“It looks like an Ent… Where did it sneak in from?” asked Zadiris.
“Well, if it’s just one tree coming at me, I’ll turn it into lumber right away.” Thinking that it would be best to fell the tree just in case, Vigaro, who was now a battle lumberjack, raised his trusty axe.
As he did, the entire thicket squirmed with the loud rustling of leaves.
“… Did all the trees we can see just move?” asked Rita.
“Could it be that all of the trees in this thicket are Ents?” Kachia guessed.
Her guess was entirely correct.
Ents are Rank 3 plant-type monsters.
They use their roots as legs to move and possess faces resembling those of humans on their trunks. Their strength is proportional to the size of their bodies and their trunks are as hard as iron. As they are made of wood, they may look weak to fire, but they possess the Fire Element Resistance skill, so they are difficult to burn.
However, their movements are dull and they are only able to swing their branches and roots around in battle. Because of their folk-tale like appearance and their human-like faces, they are imagined to be intelligent, but their intelligence is not significantly different from that of Goblins.
However, as they possess the characteristics of plants, they do not attack other creatures except in self-defense or if they are in extremely dry, barren land. Even in Devil’s Nests, as long as they are not carelessly approached and no fires are lit nearby, they are relatively unthreatening, rare monsters.
Their fresh leaves can be used to make poultices, and their trunks can be used as high-quality wood. Their faces are used as proof of their extermination.
Incidentally, the cause of their appearance has long been a source of puzzlement for researchers. The leading theory is that there are ‘Ent seeds’ that grow into large trees and form Ents. However, the existence of such seeds is still yet to be proven.
Another theory is that normal trees become Ents when polluted with Mana. Renowned mages have tried pouring Mana into soil in experiments to test this theory, but in the end, no trees transformed into Ents in these experiments.
“So, Van, how much Mana did you pour into them?” asked Basdia.
“If I recall, I recovered my Mana as I worked so it was around 300,000,000 Mana yesterday,” replied Vandalieu.
“… Your Mana is amazing as always, isn’t it, Van?”
Upon hearing the mention of Mana in the hundreds of millions, Kachia, who was more open with her feelings these days, let out a sigh. She had been training in magic recently, but her Mana was just over one hundred.
In a single day, the five-year-old boy in front of her had poured three million times that amount into the ground. Wasn’t it simply too extraordinary?
“I wish you’d share some of that Mana with me,” she said. “Well, you do share it with me from time to time,” she added.
“Indeed,” said Zadiris in agreement. “No matter how renowned a mage is, they would not possess a hundred million.”
It seemed that as a result of an incredible amount of Vandalieu’s Mana being continuously poured into the ground, all of the previously very ordinary seeds had grown into Ents.
This made the truth behind the appearance of Ents very clear.
It did seem like it would be years before this was announced to human society, however.
“By the way, is it alright with the plants like this?” Vandalieu wondered.
“You walked around before you brought us here, didn’t you?” said Vigaro. “Isn’t it fine, then?”
“It does not seem that they will attack us when we come near,” said Sam.
“Holy Son, how is your Death-Attribute Charm?” asked Nuaza.
“Hmm… It seems to be working.”
Why was Death-Attribute Charm having an effect on plant-type Ents who didn’t have death or cemetery in their names?
It was unclear, but there was no denying that it was affecting them.
But Appraisal revealed…
【Rank: 4, Name: Immortal Treant, Summary: Mutant Treants who have been showered in death-attribute Mana as seeds. However, they do not possess evil natures. They are resistant to all kinds of conditions, physical attacks and magical attacks, and they possess excellent self-restoring abilities.】
In other words, they were Ents that were incredibly difficult to kill.
“Well, I suppose we have more fighting forces and an additional source of food,” said Vandalieu.
For now, he needed to refine the Defeat flower oil. He decided to make Golems and establish a production system right away.
A group of seven people proceeded through a large, dark corridor.
The group of men and women holding lanterns to light the way, wearing various kinds of equipment, looked like adventurers in the middle of clearing a Dungeon ruins.
This would be half-correct.
“There’s less resistance than I expected, for great ruins that were supposedly sealed off a hundred thousand years ago,” said a man in his late twenties wielding a spear as he stabbed a Demon* to death.
Demons are coagulations of contaminated Mana with evil wills that turn into monsters. The Lesser Demon with the head and legs of a black goat that the man just defeated was the weakest kind, but even that was a powerful Rank 6 enemy. However…
“It’s nothing but small fry; this doesn’t even make for good exercise.”
“You are absolutely right, Riley-Aniki!” said a small man in light equipment who appeared to be a scout.
The unamused face of the Green Wind Spear Riley twisted in a small smile.
“There is no helping it; there is no way that a suitable opponent for someone like you who is an A-class adventurer with a Title would be easily to find,” said a woman whose cleavage was visible through her revealing top, who would appear to be a prostitute rather than a mage if she were not holding a staff.
Riley’s smile grew wider.
“Do you think so as well, Flark?” Riley asked.
There was no response.
“Ah, come to think of it, your collar is set so that you can’t talk, isn’t it? Well, whatever.”
The man called Flark was a Shield-bearer wearing plate armor and a helmet made of black steel harder and heavier than iron, holding a shield larger than the smaller man. As Riley spoke to him, he didn’t even so much as glance at Riley. But Riley showed no signs of concern as he chuckled and continued.
“Well, I suppose there’s no helping it,” said Riley. “I’m not foolish enough to think that heroes who leave their names in history are constantly doing flashy work. They have to do this kind of dull work as well. Especially when it’s requested by Earl Mauvid.”
“The words of a hero are really something else!” said the small man in admiration.
“Kyah, how wonderful!” squealed the female mage.
Flark said nothing, letting out only a small, short sigh. The other two praised Riley and flattered him even more unabashedly than before.
This conversation alone would be enough to indicate that the adventurers of this party were not all of equal standing, but the collars worn by Flark and the others made it very clear.
The three of them were wearing hard, black collars on their necks. They were slaves owned by Riley. The marks engraved on the collars showed that they were criminal slaves.
Unlike slaves of debt who would be released and return to becoming normal people once their debts were paid off, criminal slaves could be legally treated in any manner and they wouldn’t be released until their deaths.
There was no way that these were companions of equal status. Riley held their lives and possessions in his hands. With a party formed with just these slaves, it was not unnatural for Riley to become carried away.
However, there were three more people other than Riley and his slaves. They were three individuals with pale skin and crimson eyes, giving wry smiles at the conversation they were hearing.
“Do you guys think so as well?” Riley asked them.
One of the red-eyed individuals smiled even wider as he answered.
“We are grateful that we were able to make this exchange, Riley-dono.”
There were fangs visibly protruding from his mouth.