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The Death Mage that doesn't want a fourth time 69

by Densuke


Yoshi (Translator), Kage (Editor)

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Andrew M. ($40) Ferdinand DS ($10) Michael R. ($30) Operative Wolf ($20)
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Making a decision with someone’s life in the first village


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Following the lead of Kasim’s party, Vandalieu was heading towards the village that they were working in, the Seventh Cultivation Village.

“A cultivation village in a place like this?” Vandalieu asked in surprise. There was a city’s ruins to the south, and even a mine in beyond that.

Fester was surprised himself at Vandalieu’s question. “I’ve never heard about the city,” he said. “If you go south from the village, there’s only a rocky mountain with a slave-run mine in it. There is another Duchy when you go past that, though.”

“No, I’ve definitely heard that there was a city, a hundred years or two hundred years ago,” said Kasim. “Isn’t that the city that Vandalieu is talking about?”

“Ah, I see. He said he had a Vampire parent, right? I suppose it wouldn’t be strange for him to be told about that,” said Fester.

It seemed that the Hartner Duchy had gone into a decline in the past two hundred years.

“But why on earth would such a thing happen?” Vandalieu asked.

The adventurers gave him puzzled looks in response to his question.

“Sorry, we’re not really that well-educated. Each of the duchies is its own state, like a country ruled by noblemen, so people like us don’t really learn about the histories of other duchies,” said Zeno.

“Are you all from other duchies?” Vandalieu asked.

“Yeah, there’s a long story behind that. It’s a sad story to both hear and tell –” Fester began.

“I’ll tell him, Fester,” said Zeno. “First, regarding why the city disappeared, I’ll tell you what we know –”

According to Zeno’s explanation, the direct cause was Talosheim’s ruin after all.

That city had been built as a relay-point for the commercial trade with Talosheim, and when that commercial trade disappeared, the productivity of the city decreased and it became difficult to maintain it.

At the same time, the southern mine’s production had fallen as well. Since profits couldn’t be made by employing normal workers, slaves were used to carry out the mining.

With the people working at the mine not even having money to spend, the Duke Hartner of the time, who had been newly-appointed several years previously, had ordered that the city be dismantled.

Vandalieu was amazed that they would have been willing to dismantle an entire city. It seemed that feudal societies did anything that had already been decided upon. In Japan, there would definitely be disputes over such an action.

But what happened to the First Princess?

The name of Talosheim’s First Princess, Levia, didn’t appear in Zeno’s story. It might have been omitted because it didn’t have anything to do with the city.

It bothers me, but I suppose it would be unnatural for me to ask about it now.

As Vandalieu thought this, Zeno’s story skipped to more recent events.

“Actually, five years ago, The Amid Empire came attacking,” he said. “Most of the Sauron Duchy to the north was occupied. We’re from the Sauron Duchy.”

“We’re what you’d call refugees,” said Fester. “Those guys from the Empire apparently behaved themselves in towns and larger farming villages, but in small villages like ours, they did whatever they liked. My oldest aniki tried to save his fiancé, and both of them –”

“Fester, that’s not the kind of story you should let such a small child hear, is it?”

The war between the Amid Empire and the Orbaume Kingdom that Vandalieu had heard of previously. Vandalieu felt that he had suddenly caught up with what had been happening.

“Well, anyway, we’re refugees who escaped the Sauron Duchy and came here to the Hartner Duchy,” Zeno said in summary. “When the initial conflict was over, the second son of the current Duke, Prince Belton, began a cultivation project to help the refugees. That’s why we’re able to live with our families in the Seventh Cultivation Village that we’re heading to now.

“But the village isn’t exactly prospering, so we became adventurers on the third year after it was built and went to the city,” said Kasim.

“I see,” said Vandalieu. “I’m sure it must have been hard.”

Beginning a cultivation project to help the refugees seemed to be not a bad plan in Vandalieu’s eyes. Unlike Earth, there was plenty of unoccupied land. The area around here in particular had no Devil’s Nests, and even if monsters did appear, they were Rank 2 at most. There was nothing but a slave-run mine at the end of the highway, so there were apparently almost no bandits as well.

… Vandalieu had wiped out a Goblin pack led by a Goblin King just yesterday, but something like that could probably considered similar to a natural disaster.

Kasim and his companions had been confused over the appearance of the Goblin Barbarian, which normally wouldn’t appear on the highway. But there was no doubt that the Goblin King had something to do with this. These Goblins had likely been a scouting party who had been sent out hunting.

“I suppose so,” said Kasim. “The soldiers took us away, pointed at the open land and said, ‘Build a village here,’ so we made fields, dug wells, built houses…”

“They protected the village from beasts and monsters until the village was finished, lent us tents and blankets, and although there wasn’t much food and it wasn’t very tasty, they did give us some,” said Fester. “We’re also exempt from paying taxes for five years, but it was still hard.”

Hearing them talk, Vandalieu realized that they had gone through more hardships than he had imagined. Though land upon which a village could be built had been given to them, and they had been protected and given the necessities to live while building it, they had been made to build all of the houses, fields and infrastructure like wells by hand.

“Hey, it’s still better than suffering and looking for work every day in the slums, isn’t it? You’re going to get punished if you complain too much,” said Zeno.

According to his words, the village’s circumstances were still on the preferable side.

“And I’m sure this child has been through even harder things than us,” Zeno continued. “Sorry about these guys being so inconsiderate.”

“Not at all, please don’t worry about it,” said Vandalieu. “Thanks to my mother and other people, I didn’t struggle to eat up until now.”

There was one time where he had struggled to eat so much that he had been forced to stave off his hunger by drinking earthworm soup, but that was rather difficult to tell them.

After that, Vandalieu walked for three more hours while hearing about the adventurers’ school and Duke Hartner before he arrived at the village.

 

 

 

The Seventh Cultivation Village had a population of around three hundred, a village size that would be considered between small and medium in Lambda.

There were more human villagers than of any other race, as they made up about half of the village population. Among the other half, there were Beast-people, Dwarves and Titans. Elves, Dark Elves and Drakonids have long lifespans and unique cultures, so they often form groups within their own races. Because of this, while they might be found in cities, there are almost none in small villages.

This applied even after becoming refugees, so the Dark Elves and Drakonids of the Sauron Duchy had apparently approached groups of members of their own races.

And the Titans in this village were those who had been living in the Sauron Duchy, so they had no relation to Talosheim.

The houses of the village were all one-story houses and they hadn’t been built to be very sturdy, but considering that they had been hand-built by the villagers, they were very good.

In fact, this was apparently the most-populated of the six cultivation villages in this area.

“By the way, why are there only six cultivation villages if this is the Seventh Cultivation Village?” asked Vandalieu.

“The First Cultivation Village couldn’t make any profits and turned into a ghost town,” Kasim explained.

“They did try pretty hard, too. The nearby spring dried up, and apparently water wouldn’t come out even when they dug wells,” said Zeno.

Life in human society in this world was truly difficult.

“First, let’s hurry and exchange these ears for money.”

With that, Kasim’s party took Vandalieu to the village’s only store… the general store/bar/Adventurers’ Guild branch that also acted as an inn for anyone who wanted to stay, commonly known as the jack-of-all-trades store.

It seemed that it was impossible to get by in this village without having multiple options for business.

However, judging by the fact that none of the villagers had paid Vandalieu any attention so far, it was probably surprisingly common for people to come into the village from elsewhere.

Vandalieu had found something that bothered him far more than the villagers’ reactions, a small shrine containing a stone with Alda’s holy symbol carved on it. He directed his attention towards it, but…

“UWAH! Kasim, there’s something behind you!”

The shopkeeper of the jack-of-all-trades store referred to Vandalieu as “something” and pointed his finger at him.

“… Hello.” Trying not to be discouraged, Vandalieu greeted him.

“Hyih?! It talked?! Someone call the priest-sama!”

Weren’t these words too cruel, even for a secluded village in the countryside?

“Wait, Oyaji-san*. This child isn’t a ghost!”

TLN*: For those unfamiliar with this relatively uncommon term, it loosely translates to an affectionate way of saying “old man”. I’m keeping it like this because I think it loses some meaning if I do translate it to “old man”.

 

“His presence is lacking, but he’s definitely alive!”

“We can explain! Calm down and listen to us!”

Kasim’s party hastily grabbed the shopkeeper and dragged him back into the store rather roughly considering that they were trying to calm him down.

The words of Kasim and his companions that made Vandalieu finally realize that his presence was as thin as air to those who weren’t affected by his Death-Attribute Charm.

It seemed that the reason the villagers hadn’t said anything to Vandalieu was because they simply hadn’t noticed him.

“Sorry about my father. He likes to say stupid things,” said Lina, employee of this Adventurers’ Guild branch and daughter of the jack-of-all-trades store’s shopkeeper.

She was a bright, simple, village-girl-like Guild employee… not really. She was a village girl who had taken an examination to become an Adventurers’ Guild employee.

Whether adventurers are present or not would greatly influence a small village’s longevity, so it had been necessary to build somewhere for them to stay, even if it was a small lodging in the village’s only store.

“Not at all. I’m used to it,” said Vandalieu.

This was a blatant lie. But even though the shock of being treated like this was still echoing inside Vandalieu, it wouldn’t appear in his expression.

“Really? Then I suppose it’s fine, but I’m really sorry about that,” said Lina as she looked at Vandalieu’s doll-like face. Although she was apologizing one more time, she let it go without noticing Vandalieu’s feelings.

“Lina, more importantly, exchange these for money,” said Fester.

“Yes, yes. Umm… These are Goblin Soldiers and a Goblin Barbarian’s?! It’s amazing that you managed to exterminate these; aren’t you still E-class?!” Lina asked them, dumbfounded.

“No, the one who defeated them was –” Fester began.

“Fester, we can talk about that afterwards,” said Kasim. “Just do the exchange first.”

“Yes, you’re right. Umm…”

Lina made the calculations rather slowly, and then she counted out the bronze and silver coins. It seemed that Guild employees in village branches were more like part-time workers than proper Adventurers’ Guild employees, so they weren’t expected to be particularly proficient.

In fact, with Kasim’s party being the only adventurers in the village, she only worked at the branch once every few days.

But Vandalieu had noticed something else.

I only just noticed this, but how is it that the Adventurers’ Guild distinguishes what kind of Goblins have been killed using just their ears?

The ears acted as proof of having exterminated Goblins. Even Vandalieu could tell from their shape and color that they were Goblin ears. But if he were to be asked what kind of Goblins they were from, he would have no hope of answering.

He would be able to understand for cases like Goblin Kings, who possessed such different constitutions from other Goblins that it was difficult to believe that they were members of the same race. But Goblin Soldiers and Goblin Mages, who weren’t very different in size or shape from regular Goblins and simply had different equipment and ornaments, would be impossible to tell apart just by looking at their ears.

So how could they be told apart? Was the incantation for Appraisal recited for each one, or were skills like Monster Appraisal or Extermination Proof Appraisal taught at the Guild?

“The extermination proof of fourteen Goblin Soldiers and a Goblin Barbarian comes to 400 Baums. The Magic Stones are 380 Baums, so the total is 780 Baums,” said Lina.

Just as Vandalieu was about to ask his questions about the Goblin ears, the monetary exchange finished taking place.

780 Baums. If a single Baum was worth a hundred yen, that would come to 78,000 yen*. To Vandalieu, this amount of money didn’t seem worth fighting and risking one’s own life for. But he also knew that this was just how he felt as someone from Earth, from Japan.

TLN*: About $720USD

 

“Divided between three of us, that’s 260 each… Yes!” Fester raised his fist into the air in triumph.

“With this, we can take it easy for a while,” said Zeno, breathing a sigh of relief.

Judging from their reactions, Vandalieu could tell that 260 Baums was sufficient pay for them.

“How much is that money worth?” he asked.

“Ah, 260 Baums? Let’s see… If you were working in the slums with one of the relatively better jobs, you might be able to earn 260 Baums after about twenty-six days,” Zeno explained.

It seemed that one would need to be fortunate enough to find daily work in the slums and work without rest for twenty-six days to earn 260 Baums.

But there probably weren’t welfare programs or safety nets like insurance for injuries and illness. And finding work every day wasn’t guaranteed. Considering that, being able to earn this much in one day might be worth risking one’s own life for.

“But even the fact that we have some leeway with this amount of money is all thanks to the fact that this Oyaji-san lets us stay here for free,” Zeno continued.

“Indeed, we’d be in trouble if we didn’t have adventurers, even if those adventurers do ogle my daughter,” said the aforementioned Oyaji-san, joining in the conversation. “Sorry about earlier,” he said to Vandalieu. “If you’re staying here, I’ll let you stay for free just like these guys, so forgive me, Ojou-chan.” He apologized with a gentle expression that made him look like a completely different person from before.

That was fine, but…

“Oyaji-san! I don’t really ogle Lina –” Fester began.

“What, Fester?! Are you saying that my daughter doesn’t suit your tastes?!” the shopkeeper demanded. “And who are you calling your Oyaji-san!”

“Stop it, Father!” said Lina.

“… Umm, I’m a boy,” said Vandalieu.

“Eh?”

For some reason, everyone present was surprised by this news.

 

 

 

Vandalieu did indeed feel something of a culture shock from coming into contact with a society and culture other than his own.

But the shock at the way the human society in Lambda treated me is something else entirely.

Vandalieu couldn’t have imagined that he had such a weak, ghost-like presence. And most importantly, this was the first time that he had realized that his appearance was such that he would be mistaken for a girl.

There were times when his gender was mistaken by Ghoul children as well, but he had thought that it was simply because Ghoul men had lion heads.

Vandalieu’s other companions had never mistaken his gender before.

The truth was that the Ghouls and Undead Titans had only known because Vandalieu used “俺/ore*” as a pronoun for himself, and because Sam and his daughters referred to him as “Bocchan*.” It wasn’t like they had thought that he was a boy from the very beginning.

TLN*: 俺/ore is a pronoun pretty much exclusively used by males. Bocchan is a term that means “young master” that also only refers to males.

 

In a similar vein, others had also determined his gender by the fact that his pronoun for himself was “俺/ore”, because he was referred to as King, his unfeminine behavior and other things rather than the appearance of his face.

Well, I’m still only seven years old. I’m going to enter my second growth period. Once my voice changes, I grow some facial hair and gain some muscle, nobody is going to be able to make that mistake, Vandalieu told himself to recover from the shock.

If one were to ask what Vandalieu was doing right now, the answer was that he was currently offering topics of conversation.

“Huh, so this child is a Dhampir. It’s my first time seeing one.”

“Oh my, isn’t she just like a doll? Are you eating properly?”

“I touched the Dhampir!”

“Heheh, I’m a lucky guy.”

“Hey! You guys are being rude!”

He was being treated just like some kind of rare animal. It seemed that in this cultivation village that offered the inhabitants few ways of entertaining themselves, the “Dhampir that they had seen for the first time” was something of a spectacle to behold. Because of this, the villagers came into the jack-of-all-trades store’s dining area, one after another.

It was far better than being treated as a ghost. Vandalieu himself didn’t mind this treatment and responded politely when the villagers talked to him, so the villagers didn’t hold back.

“I see, so you’ve had some rough times as well, haven’t you?”

“It’s going to be hard, but you’ve got to do your best.”

The villagers generally treated Vandalieu favorably. Vandalieu figured that they could sympathize for his phase because as former refugees, they had suffered themselves, and they had the freedom to feel sympathy for others’ pasts in this cultivation village. But there were two other reasons.

The first was that the villagers had seen Vandalieu’s expressionless, dead eyes and assumed that he had gone through incredibly hard times.

The other was that Vandalieu was someone they could sympathize with at no cost to themselves.

If Vandalieu were a mere powerless orphan, no matter how much sympathy the villagers had for him, the things they could do for him would be limited. Most of the villagers were young and were still capable of doing plenty of work in the future, but even so, they weren’t prospering.

For now, they were still exempt from paying taxes, but in two more years, this benefit would cease. The villagers wouldn’t be able to take him in and raise him.

But Vandalieu was someone who was hoping to be an adventurer, and if even half of the stories of Kasim and his companions were to be believed, he already possessed at least enough strength to exterminate Goblins. With that being the case, sympathizing with him like this and treating him to a meal was plenty.

Still, this was far better treatment than the complete disinterest that he would get in a city.

“I’m telling you, it’s true! This guy came from behind and cut off the Goblin Barbarian’s head in one hit!” Fester exclaimed.

“Hmm, it’s not like I’m doubting you,” said Lina, “but it’s just a little too unbelievable…”

“No, you’re doubting me, right! Believe me, Lina!”

“Fester, we saw it with our own eyes and still can’t believe it, so isn’t it too much to ask for Lina to believe it?” Zeno pointed out.

They were talking behind Vandalieu, but considering that he could slay Rank 3 monsters without any effort, it wasn’t something worth convincing anyone of, so he stayed silent.

In fact, he had rendered a Rank 4 Goblin King completely helpless without any difficulty, only yesterday. Killing a Goblin Barbarian wasn’t a significant achievement compared to that.

Also, Vandalieu couldn’t register at the branch that Lina managed on her own.

Apparently, the only thing that could be done here was the exchange of extermination proof parts and other materials. In order to register, Vandalieu would have to go to a proper Guild branch in the city.

Despite Borkus and the others having told him that two hundred years ago, registration had been possible even at branches in small villages.

It seemed that it wasn’t only the Hartner Duchy that had gone through a decline in the past two hundred years; the Adventurers’ Guild in the Orbaume Kingdom seemed to have gone through a decline as well.

“This child is the Dhampir child who saved Kasim and his friends?”

Two men entered, asking this question.

These two were the rare elderly members in this village of mostly young people; it looked like several years had passed since they were in the primes of their lives. The man at the front was wearing similar clothes to the other villagers, but the one following behind him was dressed in cotton clothes that had been properly colored using dyes, and there was a necklace with an ornament that Vandalieu hated, hanging from his neck.

“Chief, Priest-sama, has your discussion finished?” asked the storekeeper of the jack-of-all-trades store.

“Yes, it is done,” the village chief replied. “More importantly, we must thank this child,” he said as he took Vandalieu’s hand and bowed. “Thank you very much for saving Kasim and his friends. Even if you are someone aspiring to be an adventurer, I am sure it took great courage to attract the Goblins’ attention.”

It seemed that the story circulating among the villagers was, “Vandalieu attracted the attention of the strong Goblin while Kasim’s party made a counterattack to exterminate the Goblins.”

Vandalieu was small compared to other children of his age, so for the villagers who didn’t know much about Dhampirs, this was probably far easier to believe than the truth of, “Vandalieu cut the head of the Goblin commanding the small unit from behind.”

“I am glad to have been of help,” replied Vandalieu, not particularly interested in correcting him.

“But you mustn’t do such dangerous things,” the chief told him. “Adventurers must survive.”

Now that I think back, I think the people here are nicer than anyone on Earth.

Vandalieu felt a little moved, thinking that humans aren’t that bad. However, there was the “Priest-sama” who was smiling behind this nice village chief, so he couldn’t let his guard down.

“To think that I happened to be staying in this village to preach and met such a brave little girl. This must be Alda’s guidance.” The priest-sama… the priest of Alda spoke in a gentle tone as he touched the cross-like holy symbol of Alda on his chest and offered a short prayer of thanks.

Vandalieu’s gender had been mistaken again, but he didn’t care about that right now.

“Priest-sama, this child is a –”

“Hahaha, Chief-san, there is nothing to worry about. Alda only punishes the wicked. Those who perform just deeds will not be unjustly punished, even if they are Dhampirs. I heard that you lived in a secluded forest or mountain. You have not yet been baptized, have you? Would you like me to carry out the ceremony?” the priest offered.

He wasn’t releasing any intent to kill or making Vandalieu feel unpleasant, but the smile on his face looked shallow in Vandalieu’s eyes. The constantly-active Danger Sense: Death gave no reaction, either.

“No thank you. Though it was an informal ceremony, my mother baptized me in Vida’s name,” Vandalieu replied. Even if it wasn’t a trap, he didn’t want to be baptized in Alda’s name, so he told yet another lie.

“I see. What a good mother she was.”

With nothing more to ask regarding the baptism in Vida’s name, the priest of Alda stepped back.

 

 

 

The Orbaume Kingdom was a collection of smaller countries that had united in order to protect themselves from the threat of the Amid Empire.

With this being its origin, the religion of Alda, the god of law and fate, the primary religion of the Empire, was… not prohibited. The religion of Vida was allowed, but there were no restrictions placed on the religion of Alda, either. This is because there was a considerable number of people in the smaller nations who believed in Alda and his subordinate gods.

But this religion couldn’t be said to be exactly the same as the teachings of Alda in the Empire.

There were multiple groups of people who interpreted Alda’s teachings in different ways. Among them was the harmonious faction who believed that “Virtuous individuals who uphold the law should be forgiven, even if they are members of Vida’s races.” This would be considered heresy by the clergymen of the Amid Empire, but it was this faction who had allowed Dhampirs to be accepted as people in the Orbaume Kingdom.

This wasn’t particularly strange or unnatural. Everyone in Lambda knew for certain that gods existed, but those gods had only existed in the world itself a hundred thousand years ago, during the age of the gods.

Now, through Divine Messages and such, they could only convey their will with limited methods to a limited number of people.

Because of this, each god’s religion was interpreted in various ways depending on the nation, region and person, and these interpretations often had strange differences between them. The most prime example was the harmonious faction of Alda.

But then, the reason the harmonious faction spread is because there were more members of Vida’s races here than in the Amid Empire, including dukes who were Beast-men, and the people’s impressions of Alda’s religion in the Orbaume Kingdom had worsened following the war, so this was probably a political decision made in order to survive.

Even on Earth, it wasn’t unusual for there to be multiple religions despite originating from the same god. I don’t know what Alda is thinking, but there’s no way that he would descend to the world, send Divine Messages or dispatch Familiar Spirits to all of his believers and point out which of their interpretations are wrong. Well, as long as it doesn’t cause me harm, I don’t really care.

He didn’t really like the condescending way he had been “forgiven,” but Vandalieu accepted that he couldn’t afford to care about things like that if he wanted to survive in society.

“Priest-sama, about the medicine you gave me… It seems to be rather ineffective.”

“That medicine is best taken in large doses, so please take it in double the dose that you have been doing up until now.”

“Priest-sama, could you please have a look at our fields?”

“I do not mind. Alda is also the god of life, after all.”

One by one, the villagers approached the priest with their troubles and requests. It seemed that the villagers adored him quite a lot, considering how shallow his smile was.

The stories of saints and heroes told by clergymen were probably one of the few sources of entertainment in this cultivation village, and seeing that he was an educated man who could even mix medicine, it made sense that he was adored, even if he was a little suspicious.

Suddenly, there a voice came from outside.

“Priest-sama, please come! Ivan has fallen from a roof!”

It appeared that a villager had accidentally fallen from a roof while doing repairs. Judging from the tone of the voice, it seemed to be quite a serious injury. In fact, when Vandalieu used Detect Life, there was one person with an unnaturally weak reaction.

“That is not good, we must tend to him immediately,” the priest said behind Vandalieu, standing up.

Vandalieu quietly left the jack-of-all-trades store. Perhaps because their attention had been drawn to the priest, nobody noticed him leave.

If he’s not dead, I think I can do something about it… Ah, it’s here.

Using Flight to rush to the place where the spell’s reaction had come from, he saw a man in his thirties lying limp on the ground and a woman with a large abdomen, a little younger than the man. There was also a child, smaller than Vandalieu.

“Honey! Hold on, the priest is coming now!”

“Daddy!” Daddy!”

Though his wife and son were clinging onto him, the man let out nothing but a groan in reply. His breathing looked labored. There was a thick shadow of death on his face.

This is a serious injury; it’s not his bones, it’s his organs… in the worst-case scenario, something might have even happened to his brain.

In such a situation, with Lambda’s medical treatment, it was hopeless. Magic might be able to do something about it, but this was the edge of the village. Vandalieu judged that he would likely die before the priest arrived… though that priest would likely be able to do anything other than shake his head unless he was a first-rate practitioner.

Of course, if Vandalieu used death-attribute magic, there was a high chance that he could save the life of this man named Ivan. The wife wouldn’t have to lose her husband, nor would the child in her abdomen and the child by the man’s side have to lose their father.

However, Vandalieu’s current objective was to “register at the Guild without attracting any attention, and then dash back to Talosheim.”

A child saving a life that could not be saved without high-level magic. That would attract plenty of attention.

To follow my original plan, or give into my emotions… It can’t be helped. I give up.

“Excuse me.”

With these words, a child quickly approached Ivan’s side and touched his body.

“Hieh?!”

“Uwah! Who are you?!”

The woman and child who hadn’t noticed Vandalieu’s presence were surprised, so Vandalieu said, “I’m the Dhampir that people are talking about in this village; my name is Vandalieu,” to introduce himself as he cast Spirit Form Transformation. In a way that they couldn’t see, he produced tentacles from the palms of his hands that were touching Ivan, fusing with Ivan and extending his spirit form into his body.

It was indeed the brain that was the problem. There was intracranial bleeding, and the blood that was pooling inside his head was creating pressure on his brain.

Absorb the accumulated blood with my tentacles. Regenerate the broken blood vessels with Healing Power Enhancement. After that, repair the cracks in his skull… This person has an aneurysm in the blood vessel near his heart. I suppose I’ll fix that while I’m at it. Ah, there’s a growth in his large intestine. It seems malignant, so I’ll remove that. His athlete’s foot… I might as well cure that as well.

“Hey, what are you…”

“Mommy, Daddy’s face is looking better!”

“Y-you’re right. Could it be that you’re healing him?”

“Ah, yes. Please wait a little longer,” said Vandalieu.

The man called Ivan had been in poor health. The image of a simple, slow life being a healthy one wasn’t true, at least in his case.

Vandalieu had done all of the medical treatment he could, so he returned the tentacles back to his body and undid his Spirit Form Transformation.

“Things will be alright now. He’ll likely open his eyes soon,” said Vandalieu.

Vandalieu had even fused his own stamina and nourishment with Ivan’s and expended it in order to heal him, so there was no way that he would stay unconscious. Vandalieu had taken up the blood that had accumulated in Ivan’s skull, but he would consider that as the treatment fee.

“Ugh, what… happened to me?” Ivan opened his eyes in the next moment.

“Honey!”

“Daddy!”

The woman and child embraced Ivan. It was a moving sight. This was what a household, a family, should be like.

“What is the meaning of this? Why are you here?” Ivan asked his family.

“I-Ivan?” said a man’s voice. “Just a moment ago, you were lying on the ground, looking like you were going to die! How are you looking so lively now?!”

Just as Vandalieu began feeling respect for Ivan for having built such a good household, the priest, village chief and the others had finally arrived.

Now if they could be fooled into thinking that Ivan’s condition had actually been nothing serious and that the man who had called for the priest had jumped to the wrong conclusion, everything other than Vandalieu being present could be resolved.

“This child, this child called Vandalieu, healed him! This child saved his life!” Ivan's wife exclaimed.

Madam, honest women are well-liked.

“Now that you mention it, I had a dream. A scary god of death had grabbed my head… but before I knew it, there was a goddess patting my head instead. I see, so that must have been this child,” Ivan concluded.

Who are you calling a goddess?

And so, Vandalieu saved the life of a villager he had never met before, attracting a lot of attention to himself.

 
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