Sorry for the late post! And Merry Christmas everyone! 😀
Chapter 239: Time flows equally
The labyrinth connected Ebiza to the Empire on the tenth floor and it was apparently used by the Resistance to infiltrate the Empire.
By the way, after sending them off at the labyrinth entrance, we chose a route away from the one they would advance down and specifically chose to take a route with traps.
Nevertheless, as we had fewer members, we reached the tenth floor before them.
“At any rate, the monsters that appear in this labyrinth aren’t that strong.”
“For now that is true. But the Adventurers gave up on going below the thirtieth floor so I’m sure the real deal starts there.”
“I see. Everyone, remember to speak up if you notice anything.”
We moved forward while having such a conversation and Kefin stood waiting in front of the door that seemed to be the door to the boss room.
“This is the main room. According to the information, it should be a pack of Black Wolves.”
“Do they have any strengths or any troublesome traits?”
“Nope, nothing in particular. Let’s go then.”
Kefin reported as he touched the door which caused it to open.
After walking to the center, about twenty Black Wolves surrounded us.
“Aooooo — nn”
At the same time I heard the howls of the Black Wolves, all the Black Wolves rushed to attack simultaneously.
However, since I could see the opponents leaping at me, I was able to reduce the Black Wolf numbers just by going at it with my Illusionary Sword.
Lionel also didn’t have any difficulties and we suppressed the tenth-floor boss room successfully.
“It was surprisingly easy. So Lionel, do we continue on directly?”
“It wasn’t a fight that we need to rest after so let’s continue if there aren’t any problems.”
After everyone collected the magic stones, we proceeded to the eleventh floor.
“Does it become slightly darker from here on out?”
“Looks like it. Perhaps this labyrinth becomes darker the further one delves into it.”
“I see. Kefin, your burden would increase so please proceed with safety as your priority.”
Nevertheless, the impression was quite different compared to the first ten floors.
While proceeding with that thought in mind, the Black Wolves that appeared in the boss room just now starting coming out so I had a feeling we were going to be busy as we began exterminating the monsters.
“There has not been a fight even remotely difficult even until the twentieth floor. Buying the map was the right choice after all.”
“That’s true. But that map is missing a lot of information on the following floors so stay vigilant.”
After signaling Kefin, he opened the door to the twentieth-floor boss room.
The figure of the enemy was nowhere to be found even after reaching the center.
“If the boss isn’t visible, then — there.”
I struck the shadow that was drawing near and a wolf emerged from the shadow before turning into a magic stone.
After ascertaining that the monsters were assassination-type wolves, I turned around to tell everyone.
But there was no need to. Countless magic stones were already rolling about in front of everyone that showed that they have already defeated a number of the wolves that appear from the shadows.
I was reassured after I closed my eyes to search for presences and found that not a single monster presence remained but I was a little shocked.
I wasn’t actually looking down on the four of them including Lionel. However, this battle taught me the difference in my combat technique compared to theirs.
“I was only able to just barely sense the monsters lurking around but how did you all notice them?”
I asked everyone about how they noticed and defeated them.
“I am always sensing for presence and magical power so I just tried attacking where distortions could be felt.”
“Monsters have a scent too. That’s why I can search for my target by tracing their scent back to their body.”
“Same as Kefin nya. This time I noticed the black shadows moving so I just swung my sword nya.”
“For me, I could just somehow know that there were monsters lurking somewhere and that’s how I could defeat them.”
Only Lionel’s answer could be taken as a reference as Cathy and Kefin relied on their race characteristics while Estia had the blessing of the Darkness Spirit.
I originally thought that I had become a lot stronger after attaining new dragon powers but after I heard their replies, I was so embarrassed that I would have hidden in a hole if there were any holes around.
Even though I was not the only one working hard and I was not the only one growing stronger, at some point in time I had started thinking that I was as strong as Kefin and the others.
What better way to call it than to call that as conceit and arrogance.
Ha~ To think that I would be proud of my combat prowess, I’ve not grown in the slightest.
After experiencing defeat by the under-leveled Shisho, I was supposed to use that as food to discipline myself but my arrogance actually continued on — I won’t be able to face Shisho if this goes on.
While feeling down, I asked everyone for a little break.
And I recalled the words Shisho told me a long time ago.
If I remember correctly, that was when people started aiming for my life because of the Botacyl incident.
When I asked Shisho if I had become stronger.
“When you start thinking if you have become stronger, you will end up arbitrarily drawing a line to categorize fights into those that you can win and can’t win. Once you do that, you will only be able to win against those who you think are weaker than you and if there are any of them who aims to become stronger, they will eventually overtake you.”
“Then Shisho, you were never conceited when you fought with me?”
“Yeah. I train while maintaining maximum tension. If I don’t do that, I would inadvertently … yup.” (TL: He meant that he would accidentally kill him lol.)
” … Thank you very much as always. Please continue to maintain maximum tension to prevent any accident in the future as well.”
“Ou. If there comes a time Luciel realizes your own conceit and did not die from it, it would mean that your luck is very good.”
“I don’t think I will ever become strong enough to feel arrogant about it but for now, I will try to survive and think about being conceit once I surpass Shisho.”
“Fu, that’s some nerve you have there. Then, today will be harder than usual.”
“Are, are you kidding?”
“Don’t you want to surpass me one day? Now then, I shall endeavor to maintain my vigilance so that you won’t die ahead of time.”
“I’m an idiot for getting ahead of myself —”
… There was an exchange like that.
I really thought that I would die that time but I really ended up surviving by the skin of my teeth. Thinking back, I really want to praise myself for not dying.
With that in mind, so that my future self would feel proud of my current self, I decided to first thank everyone who became my retinue and also do my best for each and every task ahead of me until the day I can stand shoulder to shoulder with Shisho and Lionel in their heydays.
“Thank you, everyone. Shall we continue?”
“So you’re finally feeling motivated.”
“There will be more Shadow Wolves appearing as we move forward so stay vigilant.”
“Worst come to worst, we can always use the magic tool Light nya.”
“I have good compatibility with this labyrinth so I shall protect Luciel-sama.”
Lionel cheerfully opened the door to the twenty-first floor, Kefin warned me, Cathy gave an idea to conquer the dungeon while Estia said that she would support me.
It was too embarrassing to say out loud but it’s great to have companions.
“Well then, let’s break through without getting complacent.”
We fired ourselves up as we descended to the twenty-first floor.
As predicted, it became even darker compared to the twentieth floor.
“Should I take out Light?”
“I’ll be fine until the thirtieth floor.”
Kefin was confident so I trusted his judgment.
As it was darker, it was harder to see the Black Wolves and Shadow Wolves but seeing how everyone was defeating them without any difficulties, I tried my best to adapt to the dark and joined the fight.
Perhaps because I had started concentrating on conquering the dungeon, I was not caught off guard by the monsters and could advance smoothly.
“But if the monster level is to this extent, wouldn’t there have been others who searched further into this labyrinth? Maybe there’s something else?”
“We’ve tried asking for information beyond the thirty-first floor but there was almost nobody who knew anything about it. Clearly, it must have been a burden on the Adventurers to take care of the lighting as well and another reason could be that compared to earning money in this labyrinth, it was more lucrative to go to Grandol and earn money there.”
“Then, maybe we will encounter treasures.”
“Maybe we will encounter demons too nya.”
“Cathy, that’s a flag so please stop. Well, our only option is to forge ahead and take a look ourselves. Also, Lionel, I’m fine with you taking individual action but please tell me even if you suffer from minor injuries. Lionel remains as our cornerstone for defense after all, now and for the future.”
” … Okay.”
It was dark so I couldn’t see his face but I believe Lionel was happy.
Perhaps it’s good to occasionally voice out feelings that I usually don’t talk about.
We advanced through the labyrinth as I thought about that.
Thank you for reading.