Chapter 108: Way to Return
It happened when we were cutting across the central square after leaving the town hall to return to Dolan’s workshop.
Just as I thought that the ground was heaving, 『Gooooogogogogooo』, the earth shook and the ground underneath my feet suddenly collapsed.
That was all I could muster before I was sucked into the hole.
Immediately after I began to fall into the hole, I grabbed the holy dragon spear from my magic bag, channeled magical power into the spear and attempted to thrust it into the wall to stop my fall. However, the moment the tip of the holy dragon spear lit up, the light reflected on the ant monsters that were crawling up the hole.
Instantly, instead of aiming for the wall, I pointed the spear tip at the ant monsters and maintained my free-fall, piercing the ant monsters one after another.
If the spear used to pierce the ant monsters was an ordinary spear, it most likely wouldn’t have broken through the monsters.
As the fear from free-falling caused a pulling sensation on my lower abdomen, my attempt to escape from reality was unsuccessful and I tightly clenched the shining holy dragon spear.
Just as I accelerate from the free-fall, there would definitely be ant monsters ahead and piercing them caused me to decelerate, I repeatedly experienced acceleration and deceleration until an inclination gradually appeared on the side wall.
However, perhaps because my falling speed was too fast, it felt like I slid on a steep slide and my body shot off the wall.
Pain ran through my body from the impact.
“E, 「Area Barrier」, 「Heal」, 「Heal」, 「Heal」.”
To ease the pain, I raised a barrier using 「Chant Termination」 and concentrated on repeatedly using 「Heal」to relieve the pain but the holy dragon spear lodged in the wall when I was being occupied.
“Guaaaaaa, 「High Heal」… Why did it get lodged … ?! A cave?”
My fall was suddenly halted and because my body could not withstand the G-force, the bones on my arm and shoulder, the blood vessels and muscles screamed in pain but I somehow recovered.
“Does this mean I should proceed this way? Leaving that aside, the 2 of them … didn’t fall down? … Hasn’t my luck been fluctuating erratically recently?”
Making sure that the holy dragon spear doesn’t dislodge, I immediately grabbed onto the entrance into the cave-like structure and rolled into the cave while storing the holy dragon spear into my magic bag.
“Ha~. There’s seriously been too much going on today.”
While keeping wary of my surroundings, I applied purification magic on myself before I took out the transformation mirror Dresser from my magic bag and transformed into my full gear.
“It’s been a long time since I dressed up, is this my punishment for being complacent?”
Due to the fall, my clothes were not only dirtied, it was torn in multiple places as well.
I once again sighed grandly before I started moving.
Within the pitch black cave, unlike the faintly lit labyrinths, were hidden dangers of falling from the slightest misstep.
“I’m seriously grateful for Paula and Rician.”
Actually, I had them create a mini version of the light used for the carriage.
I commented to myself that it’s lucky that the headlight I had them make in preparation for emergencies came in handy immediately as I readied my shield and illusionary sword and began advancing.
There weren’t any traps around but the usual holes were present and the ant monsters vaguely seen in the distance below caused me to tremble.
“As expected, I’ll die if I fall into one.”
In the darkness, I could see an astounding number of ant monsters.
I have food and plenty of essentials prepared including the light.
The sole problem is how would I return to the town of Rockford, as I pondered on that question, I advanced while being careful as to not fall into the holes.
” … This place gives me the impression that it wasn’t dug by the ant monsters but naturally formed instead.”
Because the ceiling didn’t even reach 2 meters in height, I was uneasy as I had to bend my posture to walk. However, the width was about 3 meters wide so it wasn’t that claustrophobic.
There were sharp rocks protruding from the ground but thanks to the light I could avoid them as I advanced.
How far have I walked … 30? or about 50 meters? After walking for about that distance, I came upon a branching point.
“Well, it’s normal to encounter one.”
I decided to choose the path to proceed by following the direction my illusionary sword falls toward.
“Kuraiya-sama, God of Destiny-sama, Buddha, ancestors, Great-luck sensei, please guide me.”
I entrusted my way forward to them and the illusionary sword did not point to either left or right but to the wall directly in front.
” … Perhaps …”
I picked up the sword and touched the wall directly in front, 『Buun』 a sound rang out and a hole opened up in the wall … and became a path.
… To be exact, the wall disappeared and a path similarly lit like those in labyrinths appeared.
“What would happen if I walk this path? I don’t want to … but I feel like the illusionary sword is telling me that I’ll find out if I proceed so I guess I’ll have to fire myself up.”
I decided to proceed along that path.
After walking briefly, there were stairs and after climbing up, a meandering path appeared. There was a single path so I didn’t need to spend time like when I was in a labyrinth to proceed.
“Hmm. There’s a solemn-looking door for some reason …? Am I supposed to open it?”
The moment I touched the door, it smoothly opened.
《It’s not Rain?》
《Who are you?》
Multiple children voices came from my side when I opened the door … but there weren’t anybody around.
“Hallucinations … or more specifically auditory hallucinations huh? Hearing voices when there isn’t anybody around, looks like I’m really tired due to Sir Rainstar. Leaving that aside, it sure is spacious.”
It closely resembled the boss room where I fought with the Red Dragon.
It would be good if it’s a mole, but if it is an Earth Dragon that shakes the earth, then it would be extremely bad. (TL: Both mole and earth dragon are pronounced the same in Japanese.)
I was thinking about that when I once again heard the voices.
《Hey, you. Why do you smell like Rain?》
《Idiot. Our voices can’t reach regular people.》
《Huh~ but it seems like he has Water-chan’s blessing.》
《Then, this goofy-faced guy can see our figures too?》
《No, I can feel fluctuations from dragons from this guy.》
《Hey you, you can hear us right?》
Looks like it wasn’t auditory hallucinations after all.
Furthermore, even though they sound like children, it sounded somewhat mysterious so I deduced that they were definitely spirits.
” … I can hear you. I’m Luciel. A hole suddenly opened under my feet and I unfortunately fell down here.
How about I answer your questions if you show me the way back?”
Since I’m currently underground, earth spirits might be able to exhibit oppressive strength so I didn’t act impudently.
Regardless of what they say of me … I continued to cover my expression with an iron mask. (TL: ie. poker face)
《Gyahahaha. This guy’s so lame~! Or rather, his luck is way too bad.》
《A clumsy person huh. Well, Rain was the same as well so humans are definitely clumsy.》
《Is that why Water-chan gave you her blessing?》
《You can hear our voices right. Then I wonder why can’t you find the way back?》
《It’s probably because he possess the dragon’s blessing so he can’t see spirits.》
《It doesn’t look like he’s contracted any so that might be true.》 (TL: it’s referring to contracting spirits I guess?)
“How did Sir Rainstar attract them?”
The instant I muttered that, the spirits? answered
《Because Rain’s magical power tasted like honey.》
《Although real honey is fine too.》
《Now you’ve made me feel hungry.》
《Hey, foolish-face. Give me something sweet.》
《Magical power is fine too~》
《He’s similar to Rain so maybe his magical power is tasty too?》
There’s one annoying spirit but I’ll endure for now.
“Erm … how about I present some honey and magical power if you teach me the way to return?”
《Even though he’s uncool, his heart feels similar to Rain.》
《Even though he’s clumsy, he’s generous like Rain.》
《Maybe that’s why he’s recognized by Water-chan … ah, this person …》
《Even though he has a foolish look, he can discern his position and negotiate, he’ll become successful in life.》
《I’ll teach you, so please.》
《I’ll throw in extra so give us plenty.》
Just slightly talking with them caused my fatigue to accumulate but I took out a large bottle from my magic bag that held the highest grade of honey from the Hacchi race and opened the lid.
“What should I do for the magical power?”
《You can just stretch out your hand and accumulate the magical power in your hand. Ah, that’s my share so don’t eat it~!》
“Is it alright like this?”
The voices I heard previously disappeared but the honey within the large bottle was gone in the blink of an eye. I experimented and took out another large bottle and this time, even the large bottle disappeared.
Seems like they are gluttons.
As I had that thought, my arm felt ticklish at random places and my magical power was being drawn all at once.
《The honey was the best. The magical power is so-so.》
《Come on put in more effort. The honey was great.》
《They’re both taste. But, it’s tastier if there’re more attributes.》
《So you do have some fairly good stuff.》
《Honey is the best! This won’t lose to the dragon blessing.》
《Yup. It isn’t muddy also, everyone’s agreeable right?》
The instant about half of my magical power was sucked out, the mechanical announcement sound rang out in my head.
《Blessing of the Earth Spirit acquired》
While thinking that I couldn’t help it, this time, I once again wanted to ask for the way back but at that moment, I noticed light-emitting spheres floating about, with brown on the outside that gradually became white in the center.
《That reaction means that he most likely can see us now.》
《There’s 2 methods to escape from here.》
《Either you destroy the ant’s nest and leave through the large door or you dispel the seal on the Earth Dragon and return using the magic circle.》
《He’s annoying but the earth is weak due to his rampage.》
《If the dragon continues being bound, the miasma would become stronger so I’d prefer if you dispel it.》
《The monsters will become stronger if the miasma becomes stronger so if possible, I want you to protect the town Rain created.》
I don’t mind if it’s just to release it but it feels like it would become a chain of consecutive battles so I don’t want to …
“Why aren’t the dwarves fighting the underground monsters?”
《They are already fighting them.》
《The dwarves are stubborn so they don’t ask for help.》
《They’re doing their best to protect their own country.》
《Their recovery means is also just alcohol.》
《They’re being pushed back by plenty of monsters.》
《I believe if it worsens any more, it will be bad even for the sturdy dwarves.》
” … I’ll have to recover my magical power, if not, I won’t be able to open the door nor will I be able to release it, so we can discuss after that.”
I sat in front of the door leading to the Earth Dragon as told by the spirits and mediated.
When I did so, the spirit who always spoke the last, said a few words and the spirits disappeared.
” … We’ll meet again soon huh.”
A slight gloomy feeling remained in my heart but I began meditating.
Thank you for reading.