Chapter 127 – Alfie Ran Away!

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Author: Firehead Original Source: Syosetu
Translator: TpstT English Source: Two More Free Thoughts
Editor(s): Vecna, Keii

Currently, in front of me, there was the appearance of a man who was in a seiza position… or rather, forced to be in a seiza position.

He was a weak uncle-like man who was serving the guy called Debris or something, the noble who was doing that stupid thing until just a moment ago. He was prostrating and looking downcast after having his face beaten to a pulp.

It was quite a disgusting scene where his nether regions were completely stained and there was a puddle under his feet.

…. Perhaps I went a little too far? By the looks of it, it seems like he’s just a normal person who doesn’t really have any power.

Although… because of what I had heard, I was aware that he was merely executing the orders due to the difference in social standing, so I had pulled my punches back quite a fair amount. Notwithstanding, this was still the aftermath.

Even though I just lightly slapped him.

Well, umm… how do I put this? Let’s just say that he did help out in doing bad things and that because of his actions, there were quite a lot of people that didn’t manage to get away, so… let’s just say it’s just retribution.

As a side note, the guy called Debris or something was healed up just enough to an extent that he wouldn’t drop dead spontaneously, therefore, even though it was barely, he was still alive and breathing.

I emphasise on “just enough so that he won’t die”. After all, if he were to be fully healed, we did not know what he might start doing.

Therefore, he still barely maintained his original shape and did not become an unknown or unrecognizable object.

Additionally, although it was to be expected, I had already confiscated his ring and had no plans to return it to him.

A knife to a fool like an iron club to an oni. It was because nothing good would come out of it even if I were to return it to him.

Afterwards, the wounds on all of the female victims were healed up and Dina was also called upon to erase their memories of everything that had conspired in this place.

After all, it was unlikely that there were any memories they would have wanted to keep.

Although something similar had happened in the past, now that I thought about it, it seemed those orcs could be considered gentlemen in comparison to Debris.

In other words, Debris was an existence that was below that of orcs.

Needless to say, Virgo’s clothes were also repaired.

“You. Do you swear to make up to the victims from now on?”

“Yes, I swear.”

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“Good. But never show your face in front of these victims. There’s a risk of their memories coming back. You are to aid them from the shadows. Do I make myself clear?”

It seemed the man, who was an associate in a countless number of Debris’s evildoings, had an aching heart as he promised to live to make up for everything that he had done.

It was not as if everything would be forgiven once a person were to regret his actions. However, depending on the perspective, he himself was also one type of victim who could not refuse Debris’s orders due to his status.

Therefore, I would not go as far as wanting to kill him outright. I also felt that it was pitiful for the Speth family to be brought down along with the criminal.

I mean… If the Speth family’s evil deeds were to come to light… the family would definitely be ruined to the bone.

I assumed the truth of what had happened would soon reach the ears of the royal family via Gants and the elf nii-san, so they would officially have their nobility revoked.

“Okay, are you able to stand?”

“Aa, ye, yes! I, I’m, I’m, I’m, I’m fine!”

I got the brown-haired girl who was still leaning on the side of the wall to stand up and cast a recovery divine magic onto her.

Even though she was done in quite badly, with this, there should not be any scars left.

To go this far against a young girl, that ******* called Debris was quite a rotten individual as a man.

Just look, she’s shaking this much from fear.

Maybe I should punch him a hundred more times.

…. Well, whatever. Punishment will come chasing later on, after all.

Anything more than this is just kicking a corpse.

“I’ve intruded. I’m done with what I wanted to do. I’ll leave the rest to your discretion.”

I decided to leave the rest to the hero’s party and quickly leave this place behind.

Of course, the woman called Rail, who was the target of the request, was also with us. The burn mark on her face was also healed up perfectly.

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Divine magic is super convenient.

“Ruphas-sama. What kind of an item is that ring?”

Whilst we were returning, Libra inquired about the mechanics behind the ring.

In all likelihood, she became curious after hearing me call it a defective item.

In response, I answered her without holding back any information.

“The effect of the ring is as I previously said already. But if the speed of the entire surrounding area was to be decreased by 10 000, even the user themselves would stop. So the ring forcibly hastens the wearer’s time just enough to be able to counter that decrease in 10 000 speed until it feels like time has stopped for everyone else but them.”

“Then…”

“Yeah. For someone like me who’s already in that realm in terms of speed, it’ll be no problem. But he wasn’t like that. Even then, as long as he was wearing the ring, the ‘time passed’ would be absorbed by the ring itself. But… I’m sure you can guess what happens once he loses that ring, can’t you?”

The effect of the ring was a debuff against the whole world and a buff to the user themself to counter that debuff.

In terms of a number, it was 10 000. It dropped the speed of everything in the world to 0, effectively stopping time itself.

Although it sounded unbelievable, the ring was applying a debuff on the concept of “time”.

However, because the debuff was also applied on the wearer themself, thereby stopping the time of the user, it counteracted the debuff by forcibly compensating the wearer with just enough speed to where they could increase their flow of time enough to be able to break free from the speed debuff.

I see, it’s definitely quite an unfair effect. So much so that if there wasn’t a demerit to it, I would have wanted the Twelve Stars to use it.

However… when there came a time the ring were to be lost, all of the “time that had passed” would come flowing back to the former user all at once. Therefore, it was an extremely defective product.

Needless to say, it was not just a simple and soft-hearted effect akin to, “the wearer was in the world where time had stopped for five seconds, so they lived for five more seconds compared to everyone else”. It conferred a demerit far worse than that.

It was said that the ordinary speed at which humans walked was approximately 5 kilometres per hour. Since that noble was an individual from this world, he possessed physical abilities greater than that of a person back on Earth. However, it still would not have surpassed 30 kilometres per hour.

Unilaterally stopping time… in other words, in this world where individuals at the level such as Benetnash and I were at, the amount of speed adjustment which would be needed to actualise the phenomenon of “leaving everything else behind in time” is… well, because I’ve never really measured it, I’m not 100% sure, but in the state where my perception of time is dilated and I felt like running or flying at full-speed, I would, in fact, be able to lap around Midgard at least once before one second of real time had passed.

Basing my judgement on that, it’s not a bad deduction to think that the speeds of Benetnash and I are over Mach 100 000.

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Because the numbers have gotten too big, all of this sounds like a joke, but let’s leave that thought aside for now.

The main point is what comes after that. I’ve heard that Mach 1 is approximately 1200 km/h.

Although… because it’s affected by pressure and the temperature of the medium, there might be a slight deviation, so it’s just an approximate figure.

And, calculating it based on these figures, for an individual that has a speed of 30 km/h to be able to surpass someone moving and operating at Mach 100 000, their own speed would have to be multiplied by 4 000 000.

In other words, 4 000 000 seconds would have passed for each second of time the noble stopped… rewording that, approximately 46 days of his lifespan would be spent in a flash.

If he were to only use it a few times, although it came with a vicious price to pay, it wouldn’t be something that he wouldn’t be able to afford.

If 10 seconds of time were to be stopped, it would mean that he would have spent over a year’s worth of time, but it may still be considered within an acceptable range.

But what if it was repeated multiple times?

What happens when a few seconds of time was stopped every time it was used and it was used repeatedly?

If one minute’s worth of time was to be stopped, he would have spent over seven years’ worth of his lifespan. If a grand total of 10 minutes’ worth of time was to be stopped, over 70 years’ worth of his lifespan would have been used.

And by the looks of things, that spoiled brat had relied quite heavily on this ring.

I’m not sure how many times he had used it up until now, but… well, if my predictions were correct, by now, he would have turned into a geezer. Actually… I guess if he can end up only as a geezer and nothing more, it’s still a good result?

To sum things up, it was pretty much no different from being asked to abandon the future for a moment of immediate victory.

The only ones who would be able to use the ring without any demerits were me, the Demon King and Benetnash… but, how would we even put it to use?

I suppose it’d be interesting to use it as material for a golem, maybe?

If it’s the current me, it wouldn’t even be a dream for me to create a golem which is at a higher level than Libra.

Well, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s still a defective item, but it’s not like there’s absolutely no way to make use of it. I suppose I’ll just keep it on me for now.

After we got back to the inn, the innkeeper subjected us to over-the-top gratitude.

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He must have been worried about the woman called Rail to this degree.

Needless to say, we did not convey everything that had transpired at that location.

We only informed him that after she was kidnapped, she was put to sleep.

After all, it was a fact that she was not violated, therefore, technically, it was not a lie.

Anyways, let’s put all of that aside. What was important at the time was the food.

In front of me were steaming, luxurious and beautifully presented dishes.

Although I felt there were too many dishes, considering that we also had quite a few people on our side, we would probably be able to finish it all.

I selected one from amongst the many dishes and picked it up with my hand. It was a giant bone covered in meat and well-cooked right down to the inside.

Manga meat… so it actually exists for real…

When I gnawed it off, the meat’s succulent flavour overflowed within my mouth. Its flavour was something that I was not familiar with.

Although it was a little hard, the meat had the right texture and was pretty nice overall. It tasted a little like chicken meat, however, it was definitely something else.

As I was enjoying the taste with every bite that I took, I suddenly pictured a dragon-looking creature with wings in my head.

At the same time, what I saw was a memory of a scene where Ruphas from the olden times was camping with young and immature looking individuals such as Megrez, the late Alioth, Mizar and the others.

Near them was a corpse of a subjugated pseudo-dragon, cooking under a fire.

Ahh… so, that’s a pseudo-dragon, huh?

We might call it a fake one, but it was still the first time we were eating a dragon.

So the taste of a pseudo-dragon is actually pretty similar to that of a chicken?

I mean, I’m definitely not discontented with it. I actually quite like this flavour.

If there was something like mayonnaise, I think it’d go quite well together.

As I was thinking about such a thing, I enjoyed the hour having lunch.

However, it all came to an end when suddenly, at that moment, Dina stood up.

“What’s wrong, Dina?”

“I need to go wash my hands.”

Ahh, she needs to go to the toilet, huh?

After watching Dina’s back as she hurriedly went away, I went back to biting at the pseudo-dragon meat.

But this time, I was stopped again when Castor suddenly stood up by kicking his chair away.

What? Do you need to go to the toilet too?

That was what I thought. However, Castor’s expression at the time was the very definition of dead serious.

He was covered in sweat and donned a very grim facial expression that I had never seen him have before.

He’s holding it back… well, actually, that doesn’t actually seem to be the case.

“This feeling… is it Pollux? But… how can it be… there’s no way she would leave and go outside of the Land of the Fairies…”

Pollux?

If I recalled correctly, that was the name of the younger sister from the [Twins].

According to Parthenos’s story, I had heard that the [Twins] were fulfilling the duties of sealing an ouroboros. However, Castor certainly did not appear to be doing that. In the first place, the very fact that he was here was strange.

Therefore, it could naturally be inferred and determined that the one who was sealing the ouroboros was the younger sister of the two.

And from the looks of it, it seemed something had happened to her.

Castor subsequently ran straight outside and the rest of us were just left behind quite anticlimactically.

“…….”

Well, yeah, it’s that, you know.

I guess we should chase him for now.

*

“….. Well, she certainly came in like a storm.”

After Ruphas left, Sarjes earnestly muttered such words and everyone else was inclined to agree.

Even an item which was terrifying to them was nothing more than a defective product to Ruphas.

Even an enemy who was a strong opponent for Sei and the rest was nothing more than a weak old man from Ruphas’s point of view. In all likelihood, Ruphas had not even noticed that the man, who was still in a seiza position even at that very moment, was one of the top-tier warriors amongst the humanoids. No, in the first place, it was questionable whether she even conceived him to be a warrior at all……

For her, the comparison of the difference between an ordinary person and Debris was the same as that of an ant and a slightly stronger-than-normal ant. There was no way she could even distinguish the difference between the two.

The light slap, which was similar to if she was affectionately patting a small loveable animal, had caused the head of Debris’s subordinate to fling left and right and then immediately swell up. This scene caused everyone still present at the time to become terrified and leak a weird sounding laugh.

Since he was young, Sei had always questioned the concept of “you can’t run away from the boss” in games. However, the reason for that mystery had now become apparent.

Yeah… it’s definitely impossible. You can’t run away from that. The realm that they live in is different.

To have your neck grabbed the moment you start running away… there’s really nothing you can do.

“…. I’m so… pathetic.”

Sei muttered quietly and looked at his own hands.

He was aware that he was weak.

But even then, he had not considered or thought about it too seriously. This was because Ruphas and the rest were definitely over the top.

Comparing oneself to a tornado, an earthquake or a meteor and thinking that oneself was weak was natural. There was no one who would give thought to something like that seriously.

Ordinarily, one would not go about thinking, “The Sun is so big and strong, so why am I this weak?”

But today was different. He was made to learn.

After being faced with the reality that he could not even reach the foot of another human being similar to himself, he was forced to realise how weak and pitiful he was.

It was a disgraceful scenario where, let alone being unable to save a person from someone full of evil intentions, he himself was turned into a hostage.

At that moment, above everything else, he could not forgive his own weakness.

He had wanted to become stronger more firmly than he had ever wished for.

The method was……… right in front of his eyes.

If, somehow, he was to be given the golden apple that only Ruphas could make, he could easily become one of the top-tiered talents, even in this world.

But was that really the right thing to do? Was it not just far too simple?

Ruphaemon~ I want to become strong~ Here, have some golden apples~ Yay, I’m level 1000 now~

……. Was that… really what it meant to be strong? Could one really be proud that they had gotten stronger that way?

After gaining strength in such a simplistic and irresponsible way, could he really keep himself from becoming impudent and arrogant?

Did he have the confidence that he would not become like that Debris guy?

There was nothing worse in corrupting a person than a power that was simply handed to them.

In that sense, the golden apple was truly the forbidden fruit. It was something that provided the temptation for people to go off-track.

I want to become stronger…… That was how Sei felt from the bottom of his heart.

Nonetheless, he still hesitated to reach his arms out to grab the golden apple.

Truth be told, this was the reason he had never brought up the topic about the golden apple in Ruphas’s presence.

It was not anything special. It was simply that he was scared about making a mistake. He was fearful that he would step off-track once he gained power.

Mistakes were frightening. Once he went off-track, it was not just his own life but the lives of others that he would destroy.

Furthermore, the greater the power that he possessed, the bigger the collateral damage he would cause from his mistakes.

As an extreme example, even if the current Sei made a mistake and accidentally smashed the ground with all of his might, at most, only a small part of the ground would be shaved off.

However, if Ruphas were to do the same thing, it would cause unimaginable damage to the surroundings.

It could even make the planet crack in two.

It was the very fact that he, as a single individual, would gain the power to decide the fate of even the world. There was no way the pressure of that would be light. There was no way he could think lightly of it.

If he were to be given that much power… would he be able to use it correctly? Did he have the qualifications for it?

Faced with those questions, Sei did not know the answer.

“Sei-dono, is anything wrong?”

“N, no, nothing.”

Although Kaineko looked up with his round eyes and prompted Sei, Sei feigned that there was nothing wrong.

Sei then silently moved the stupid dog peeing on Debris’s face away from Debris and told it not to pee on someone’s face, before turning to face Alfie.

“Umm… I’m sorry. That I wasn’t able to be of much help.”

“What are you saying? If you weren’t there, I’d have been caught in that dark alley and I don’t even know what I’d be subjected to by now. I’m really thankful for everything, Sei.”

Alfie displayed a warm smile and extended her gratitude towards Sei.

She then looked away, which was also followed by Sei looking away.

They must have had things they wanted to say to each other, however, neither of them could muster up their convictions.

Eventually, however, she picked herself up and looked directly towards Sei.

“So, umm… you know, only if you’re fine with it… or more like, if everyone is fine with it… umm, I know it sounds like a lot to ask for, but umm, I, would like to be included in the journey together with…”

It happened as Alfie was fidgeting and asking bashfully.

The stupid dog that was getting bored and looking for something to do decided to attach itself onto Sarjes. Unfortunately, due to its momentum, Sarjes’s robe slid off.

And what appeared from underneath was – a spider!

As soon as she saw his appearance, Alfie turned pale and stopped speaking.

She already understood that Sarjes was not a bad person. If anything, they had even fought together with each other and she had a favourable impression of his personality. She certainly did not hate him… yes, she did not hate him.

However, as a human, it was unavoidable to have irrational fears that they could not stand.

There existed those who could not stand the sight of a cockroach however much they tried, and there were those who could not stand spiders.

In other words, that was just how it was.

For Alfie, she just simply could not stand the appearance of a spider. It was just something irrational that she could not help fearing.

It had nothing to do with whether it was harmful or not. For example, it was not a problem about whether it possessed venom or not.

It was just that, somehow, she could not stand how it looked.

Just by looking at it, she would get goosebumps and would not be able to stop sweating.

“…………….. I’m sorry. Please forget what I just said…….”

Just like this, the flag which was almost raised collapsed in a flash.



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