T/L: Lore_Temple (foxaholic)
“Hey, is the monster’s nest still far away?”
It was about an hour after I started climbing the mountain.
The little boy named Chris began to whimper as he shrugged his shoulders.
Xenia read through him.
“Chris, haven’t we just left? Be patient with this.”
“Atleast, we have to know where we are going.
Mister, you didn’t even tell us where that monster’s nest is.”
“I will tell you that later.
That’s why you got that big sum as payment.
Isn’t it so?”
“It is, but…”
Chris’ momentum waned a bit.
Taking advantage of that timing, that uncle guy… Kurba interjected.
As your son said, this is important.
We don’t even know where the monster’s nest is, moreover, we don’t know the identity of the monsters too.
If left unchecked, this can be life-threatening.”
“Ah… is that so…?”
Kurba talked with his arms crossed, pretending to be cool.
Seeing this, Xenia’s reaction was not very good.
No matter how young she may look, she is the mother of a son in his mid-teens.
The clerk said that she had been an adventurer even before she had children, so her career as an adventurer must be more than Kurba, not less.
Naturally, she won’t look good when someone with lesser experience than her, tries to undermines her authority in front of her son.
Of course, Kurba had no intention of offending her.
He must have been planning to take it step by step while gaining the favor of those around her.
“Right? Am I right? Look mama, I’m right!”
He even won the favor of her child as he thought.
Mom was wrong.”
However, unknown to him, it lowered the affection of Xenia, who was more important.
‘But, well, it’s time to start talking slowly.’
When I gathered the adventurers, I did not give out the cause—dungeon exploration.
If I said it out directly, it’s definitely going to attract a lot of attention.
They can sell the location of the dungeon or even be threatened by others to know the dungeon’s location, after which, someone will come out to steal it.
I will be bothered no matter what.
So, I took out the cause of subjugating a monster nest instead.
And now that we have climbed the mountain for quite some time, and are still far away from the city, now was the time to bring out the true purpose.
I told the real purpose of bringing them.
The reactions were different, but they had the same thing in common.
“So that’s why… that’s why the down payment is so huge…”
In Xenia’s case, she was even readily convinced.
She also had doubts like Kurba, there was no way she wouldn’t have such doubts.
Because it was a slightly suspicious quest if anyone looked over it carefully.
The big down payment was the only thing that made her shut up.
Anyway, the three of them followed me above the mountain with a brighter expression than before.
So we climbed for a few more hours and arrived at a pond surrounded by peach trees.
“Eh? Where is the dungeon here?”
I took off my clothes along with my armor.
“H, Huh?! W-What happened, why are you taking off your clothes?”
Xenia covered her eyes and turned her head away.
“There is a mechanism that opens the dungeon under this pond.”
“Ah, that’s good.”
“…why is mommy’s face red?”
“Hey, boy! When did mommy had any red on her face?!”
Xenia and Chris quarreled just because of that.
Kurba was looking at me with hostility present in his eyes.
Hehe, I see why.
No matter what others say, some people are born handsome.
Even if I just sleep, charm will radiate on its own, just because of that simple action, what to do?
After some light stretches, I threw myself into the pond.
It was a clear pond, so I could see the fishes swimming around me.
Among the fishes, there was also this guy, the size of my forearm, he seemed to recognize me as a big prey and opened his mouth to stick out his sharp teeths.
‘What’s with this bastard?’
I grabbed the head and tail of the fish that dared to teeth on me and bit on its fleshy nape.
It was tougher than I thought, so my jaw ached, but I couldn’t just leave the guy who dared to go backwards in the food chain.
After that, I scoured the bottom of the lake, swinging the naughty fish who tried to go backwards in the food chain, to and fro.
I found a chain attached to a round ring hidden between the rocks.
I grabbed the ring and pulled it up with force.
With a loud sound, the structure of the pond began to change.
The miracle of Moses unfolded in the middle of the pond.
The water was divided into two halves, creating a staircase from above to the bottom of the pond.
I swam up to the middle of the lake and came out of the water.
As I went up the stairs, I could see the three people looking at the pond with their mouths wide open.
After putting on my clothes and gear, I gestured to them.
“Are you guys going to remain surprised? We still have a dungeon to clear.”
Only then the three of them came back to their senses and followed me.
As I went down the stairs and continued walking, the stony floor splited on both sides.
A large stone gate appeared.
-Prove your qualifications.
The three adventurers panicked at the sudden sound.
I gashed my palm with a dagger, soaked it in enough blood, and brought it to the stone gate.
The stone door opened with a rattling sound.
As the four of us entered, the stone gate closed immediately.
The sound of water pouring over the stone gate was heard.
“…how will we get out of here later?’
Xenia asked in a worried tone, to which I chuckled.
“You haven’t found the treasure yet, are you already worried about going out?”
“Ah… that’s right, but…”
“I know how to get out, so don’t worry and just focus on the dungeon for now.
And as I’ve said before, I’m going to make it clear once again.
Treasures from the dungeon will be distributed evenly.
However, the treasure from the 30th floor is mine.
Do you all agree?”
“…Isn’t the lowest level floor’s treasure the best?”
“Ah, all right! I just asked, come on.
Don’t look at me like that!”
I blankly stared at him, and this Chris guy’s dissatisfaction was corrected.
It seems like this guy’s gonna be later catched up by Xenia and educated strictly again.
His actions are no different from middle school students who fight at simple eye contact.
‘Is that how he increased his adventurer grade…?’
I used to do that when I worked with tough mercenaries back in those days.
I glanced at the party members.
A young-looking mother who cares about her son’s bangs and a son who hates such an action.
The man who spies at the young-looking mother with wretched looks.
I don’t really need to.
Pulling out my torch, I stepped into the dark cave.
* * *
The 1st to 5th floors of the dungeon are made up of caves.
Goblins live here, and these goblins are not ordinary goblins.
Hobgoblins, goblin shamans, goblin knights, etc.
All kinds of mutant goblins roam around on these floors.
Among them, the goblin knights seem to be a bit inconsistent, but…
“Damn! Why is a goblin, a green a**ed goblin better armed than me?!”
These guys wore full plate armor like real knights.
Thanks to which, Chris had to go through the infamous experience of getting a soul match with a goblin.
When I saw it, a lot of things naturally came to my mind.
‘The goblin knights I saw in the game were of level 15.
Chris’ level is 16.’
Goblin knights or any other goblins, they are just mobs in the game.
A miscellaneous mob that dies facing 3 to 5 attacks in case of player’s or allies’ normal attacks and in 1 to 2 attacks in case of a skill.
However, Chris was fighting such a mob in equal measure.
Even though he’s one level ahead.
‘An unimportant npc is an unimportant npc…’
Growth potential is limited.
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