|Translation & Editing||Re: Translation, Obarou|
I noticed something in the range of [Sense Presence]. Even though it was 2 hours past midnight.
[Sense Presence]'s area of effect has grown considerably recently. I always activate it before going to sleep just in case, so it started waking me up in the middle of the night randomly sometimes. It was very annoying.
That's why I overlapped it with [Sense Enemy] and set it so that only those with a hostile reaction will trigger it, to prevent it from waking me up at night. Now that I actually take a look there are a lot of enemies showing up, too many for this hour.
For a moment I thought "Did the humans come to attack?", but I instantly rejected that idea. At night the forest belongs to monsters.
If the humans were to attack us now, they would be at a huge disadvantage. Trying to figure out what it was, I was able to confirm it wasn't the humans.
The species name coming up after using my abilities [Mental Map] and [Sense Presence] together was kobold. For a moment, I thought "They finally came for revenge?", but… that seems to be not the case.
I could tell there were 53 kobolds by the number of red dots showing up on my [Mental Map]. There were also 38 blue dots that appeared to be chasing the kobolds. At the very edge there was a rather large gray dot. Individuals of the same species show up as the same color, so that means there are three different species.
I didn't know what the blue and gray dots were. From what I could tell, when the red dots made contact with the blue dots the red dots were disappearing.
It appears the kobolds were under attack.
Something like this happens all the time which is why I usually just ignore it.
It was different this time though, because the kobolds were heading straight for our mine.
I’d rather not have anything to do with this, but they were getting closer and closer. I decided to wake up everyone in order to prepare for the possible intrusion.
I can easily kill the kobolds, so the real threat was the blue and gray dots.
The kobolds ran as fast as they could towards our mine. Their numbers had been reduced to 36. There weren't just males. The group included females, elderly and children too.
In the rear was a line of armed male kobolds trying to hold off the blue dots. The blue dots were bleached white skeletons armed with swords, shields, and armor. The kobolds were desperately trying to slow the skeletons down.
I was at loss for words.
Getting a good hit on them is incredibly difficult and even if they get hit head on, the bolt simply gets knocked down to the side. They were incredibly tough.
In all likelihood, there was an ability of some kind at work here.
Seeing that the crossbows were ineffective, I pulled « Regret », our long-range corps, back. «Pleasure», our logistical support corps, led the escaping kobolds to the jail. In addition, I ordered Gobuji-kun to administer medical treatment to anybody that needs it among the kobold's group.
I wanted them under surveillance and they'd only stand in the way if they stayed here.
Seeing that long range attacks were ineffective, I ordered our main close quarters combat corps « Anger » and our lightly armed corps « Hatred » to engage the skeletons. The black wolves also helped.
However, cutting through bone with a blade is hard. It was a tough fight in the beginning.
However, that all changed when Hobusato-san accidentally discovered that it's possible to break the bones with blunt force, that happened when she hit a skeleton approaching her from behind with her scabbard. The skeletons have a high resistance against slashing attacks but they are pretty weak against blunt force.
I relayed that information to everyone using the ear cuffs quickly. Then, as if the tough time we were having was just a bad dream, we took out the skeletons in no time.
Now that we found out their weakness, they were no longer a problem.
With his huge battle axe and tower shield, Gobukichi-kun's figure looking like a castle wall was mowing through them like nothing.
The sight of that huge figure going through the skeletons while emitting a bellowing sound from the clash and turning them into dust was awe-inspiring.
Gobue-chan was equipped with her usual pickaxe. It’s not an exaggeration to say that she already have a certain kill swing. She was swinging downwards crushing the skull in one hit making it all the way down to the sacrum without stopping. It was an incredibly powerful blow. The skeletons were simply dug out.
T/N: Sacrum - Triangular bone at the base of the spine, between the hip bones.
At first, Gobumi-chan used her bow's [Certain Hit] ability to hit them in the skull, but it wasn't very effective. However, she was able to work around that not only with the amount of rapid-fired shots able to hit their mark, but also by changing the arrowhead which resulted in an increase in blunt damage.
The skeletons did not have anyway of defending against the wave-like rapid-fire of arrows modified specifically to counter them.
Hobusei-san burned the skeletons to ashes with her [Fire] magic. Of course, she didn't use her wide-area destructive magic because there was allies around her. After Ranking Up, her magic's power drastically improved. She didn't have much of a handicap against the skeletons.
As for me, well, I definitely wouldn't have any problems.
Unlike the kobolds, we have plenty of ways to deal with the skeletons.
Adding in the Hind Bears and the Triple Horned horses, we have way too much war potential to be worried about losing.
I though that I won't need to personally end this, but then I noticed that something seemed off, the skeleton's numbers weren't decreasing at all.
The skeletons inside the mine were crushed until they were nothing but a heap of bones, but more and more kept coming in from the entrance. There was no end to them.
Thinking about where they came from, I remembered what Returner told me about them. There is a superior species to Skeleton soldiers called [ Greater Skeletons ], which have the ability to create Skeleton soldiers.
In addition, by absorbing the Mana from the surrounding darkness the number of Skeleton soldiers Greater skeletons can create during the night seemed to be infinite. She boasted "It's something that's normally impossible, however, it's only to be expected that Velvet-sama is capable of such a feat".
“Ah, so that’s how it is” after I figured it out, I thought “Then, I just have to go and crush it.”
However, I changed my mind after considering how much Experience Values we can gain by killing the Skeleton soldiers over and over.
“Isn't this is a good chance to increase everyone's Levels?” I thought.
Then I informed everyone that we are starting a past midnight Experience Values harvesting festival.
The gray dot is probably the Greater skeleton spawning the Skeleton soldiers. It was standing outside without moving, so I wasn't worried about something unexpected happening.
At first I though, "Isn't there a possibility that some may get killed?”, but after some time everyone seemed to have gotten used to fighting them so we got by with almost no injuries.
There was the possibility that something could happen due to fatigue. That's why I had them fight in shifts to make sure nothing happened.
Even the long-range and logistical support corps can destroy their bodies with blunt weapons relatively easily.
I munched on a pile of bones while watching them fighting. Redhead came over to take a break during the fight too.
Blacksmith-san, the Sisters and Alchemist-san came out from the back of the mine in the middle of the fight. I was wondering if the bones could be used as ingredients for anything, so I consulted with them.
Apparently these bones can be used as an ingredient, moreover, it seems like skeletons' bones are high quality rare items. That is why I stored some of them in my [Item Box], if sold, it can get me quite a large amount of gold. I'll turn it into traveling funds when I go outside the forest later.
As expected of those with the [Job-Peddler], they have a lot of useful information when it comes to trading.
Ability [Slashing Resistance] learned
Ability [Piercing Resistance] learned
Ability [Weakness to Sunlight] learned
Ability [Weakness to Blunt Damage] learned
Ability [Critical Hits Nullification] learned
Ability [Tireless] learned
Ability [Bone Union] learned
Ability [Joint Magic] learned
Ability [Equipment Materialization] learned
Ability [Evil Miasma of Life] learned
Ability [Magic Power Absorption] learned
Ability [Negative Status Effects Nullification] learned
Ability [Cold Attack Nullification] learned
Ability [Thunder Attack Nullification] learned
Ability [Acid Attack Resistance] learned
Ability [Weakness to Light Damage] learned
Ability [Weakness to Holy Damage] learned
Ability [Weakness to Fire Damage] learned
Ability [Anaerobic] learned
I ate a ton of them, so I was able to secure a lot of abilities. There was a lot of harmful and useless abilities, but they won’t be a problem since I won’t activate them.
It’s been around 4 hours since the festival began. Since it’s almost time for dawn to arrive, in addition, because everyone gained a good amount of Experience Values and Leveled Up a bunch, I guess it’s time for me to end this festival.
More like, I want to sleep.
That's why I decided to end this festival quickly. I charged towards the entrance tearing the horde of unending Skeleton soldiers asunder with my silver arm and red spear before I went outside.
Right when I got out, a black long sword was swung at my head. I have already saw it coming though and parried it with the vermillion spear, then I thrusted my silver arm's fingers at the enemy, extending them using the silver arm's [Self-Evolution] ability.
The one who slashed at me with the black sword was the Greater skeleton - whose body was twice as large and possessed equipment vastly superior compared to the Skeleton soldiers - , and the moment my silver arm smashed through its chest brought this festival to an end.
I picked up its skull which was making some nasty rattling sounds and ate it silencing the annoying sounds. After that, I devoured every last bit of it down to the last bone.
As expected of a superior species, the difference in the amount of Experience Values you can get from crushing it and its taste are at a different league compared to Skeleton soldiers.
It hadn't occurred to me that bones can be this delicious.
What is this, a luxury-class bone? It have a nice consistency. Yeah, tasty.
Ability [Lesser Summoning: Undead] learned
Ability [Greater Equipment Materialization] learned
Ability [Negative Energy] learned
Ability [Lesser Physical Damage Reduction] learned
Ability [Lesser Magic Damage Reduction] learned
At first I thought, “How dare these kobolds bring us trouble,” but now I see them as dogs that brought us a gift.
For the time being, I went to the jail and seeing that the cleric Gobuji-kun was frantically healing some of the seriously injured kobolds, I finished the treatment of the rest of the kobolds quickly and gave them a sleeping drug.
It would annoying if they started making a fuss while we are sleeping and woke us up.
We were extremely worn out because of the festival so we all went to sleep quickly.
In the evening, I woke up the drugged kobolds and asked their leader, the [ kobold Footman ] equipped with a short spear and his associates about what happened to them.
Hearing their story, I was able to establish the following:
The kobolds lived in a cave just like us - though they were a little air-headed, they didn’t do any expanding - .
→ They lived by hunting in the forest and the mountains. However, everything changed for them when they killed an orc and obtained an iron pickaxe.
→ Recently, the female kobolds worked on expanding their home by digging while the males hunted for food.
→ Like this they were able to improve their living area. They were happy they were able to expand.
→ While they were expanding their cave they came across « Velvet's Dungeon ».
→ The kobolds didn't know what the dungeon was. They decided that the male kobolds would investigate the dungeon during the day and they covered the hole up, however, while they were sleeping in the middle of the night, Skeletons soldiers appeared from the hole.
→ They were forced to flee.
→ Fatigue, something a Skeleton doesn't have to deal with soon overtook the kobolds who were trying frantically to run away and because they were weaker than the Skeletons soldiers they were mercilessly killed without being able to resist. The Skeletons soldiers didn't show any mercy to them, be it warriors, elderly, children, males or females, all were mercilessly killed.
→ While they were running, a kobold asked "where should we run away to?", the leader answered "there is a cave inhabited by a famous ogre around here, lets go there".
→ A kobold said "but we may get killed by him".
→ Then the leader said “Either way… we’ll all be finished at this rate if we don't do something… So let's at least try”
→ You know the rest.
… What the hell?
No, nevermind, as long as everything worked out in the end it's okay.
Once they finished their story I tried to sort all the details in my head while fiddling with my horns. Then, the Kobold footman and warrior kobolds kneeled before me.
Kobold Footmen are Kobolds who underwent an [Evolution (Rank Up)]. The Kobolds lifestyle is fundamentally that of a Warrior or Samurai. I've only killed and eaten kobolds so far, so I wasn't aware of that.
I said to them "I've eaten many of your kind, is it okay to do this?" then they responded “The weak will inevitably be fed on by the strong and if it's someone as strong as you, Lord, then I'm sure that they don't have any regrets about being eaten by you”.
That’s right, "Lord".
The debt of being saved from death can't be repaid by anyway other than exhausting their lives. It's such a simple way of thinking, after recognizing me as their master they would never betray me and if I given the order they would happily give up their lives.
That's what I heard from them.
Well, there is no way I can believe them completely just like this, but looking at their eyes I can tell how serious they are. It's rare to see such honest and serious eyes.
After considering that, I decided to prepare something just in case before deciding on what to do with them.
I took out a certain magic item from my [Item Box]. Then, I ate all the ten pieces of that I own.
Ability [Enslave] learned
The magic items I ate are called the [ Collars of Slavery ], which belonged to the adventurers that we killed in « Velvet's Dungeon »
It's obvious what they are for. It's something that you can put on your guards if you didn't trust them.
Even though I knew that I'll get an extremely useful ability by eating it, however, I didn't eat it because when I tried eating it before it tasted awful.
Simply feeling it's texture with my tongue and teeth felt nauseating. It's surface was sticky and its contents were hard and had a burnt taste. The more I chewed, the more I started feeling nauseated.
Moreover, it tasted bitter, sour and spicy. I can't even describe how awful the new flavor it brings out by mixing these three.
Is saying this enough to make you understand how bad it tastes?
It has been really a long time since I’ve eaten something this horrible. I thought that it would be good if I didn't have to eat it, however, I don't have any other options in this situation.
After eating it I got the ability [Enslave]. It's an ability that prevents treason. This ability won’t do anything just by possessing it though. To make use of it, I should start manufacturing ear cuff-type communication devices that have this ability.
Eh? What will I do with the kobolds you say? I’ll decide that tomorrow. For now they can use the cells.
The kobolds were very obedient, so I didn't want to be too hard on them.
Hmmm, should I kill and eat them or should I let them join our ranks?