After defeating the scorpion, they returned to Hajime’s base after retrieving materials and meat from the scorpion and cyclops. They were troubled by the sheer size of the bodies, but after Yue who was exhausted after using highest grade magic drank some blood again, her strengthened body recovered splendidly in a flash and exhibited superhuman strength. Between the two of them, they were somehow able to bring the items back.
Incidentally, Hajime originally wanted to use this sealed room as their base, but the idea was discarded after Yue adamantly refused. It was no wonder. She had been imprisoned there for who knows how many years, it was only natural that she didn’t want to stay there much longer. In order replenish their supplies, they must stay there for a period of time. Hence, it would be better for her mental health if they left this sealed room as soon as possible. Just like this, they were currently chatting with each other while Hajime was replenishing his supplies.
“In that case… doesn’t that mean Yue is at least 300 years old?”
“…Breach of etiquette.”
Yue stared at Hajime with reproachful eyes full of criticism. Talking about a female’s age seems to be a taboo no matter of whichever world it was.
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From his memories, Hajime recalled that the vampire race perished after a large scale war three hundred years ago. Yue had probably lost her sense of time after being sealed in that dark room for such a long time. It wouldn’t be surprising if anyone said that she had been sealed for a much longer time than that. She was sealed when she was twenty, to be called over three hundred years old after she was released, how could she accept.
“Do all vampires live for so long?”
“…I’m special. 【Regeneration】, prevents aging…”
According to her, after her inherent magic — direct magic manipulation and 【Auto-Regeneration】 — awakened at the age of twelve, she seemed to have stopped aging. Ordinary vampires also appears to live much longer than other races since they sucked blood. Even so, about two hundred years was the limit.
By the way, the human’s average lifespan was 70 years, demonkin around 120 years, while demi-human’s lifespan was dependant on the race. There are elves who lived for hundreds of years.
Yue was considered one of the strongest of her time in only a few years after she awakened to her atavistic powers. At the age of seventeen, she took the throne as the Queen of Vampires.
Indeed, her magic that melted the scorpion’s shell was an attack that had little to no time delay. Moreover, she also had an almost immortal body. To the point that she would be called either a 【God】 or a 【Monster】. Yue was without a doubt, the latter.
Her uncle who was blinded by greed, started spreading rumors that Yue was a monster. He tried to kill her in the name of righteousness, but because of her 【Auto-Regeneration】, he failed and hence, could only seal her in the underground instead. Yue was so shocked by the sudden betrayal that she did not put up much resistance and was put under some sort of sealing spell amidst the confusion. By the time she regained her self, she was already in the sealed room.
Therefore, that scorpion, the sealing method, and how she ended up in the abyss, she was completely clueless. Maybe there’s a way out! Hajime, who held that kind of expectation, drooped his head in disappointment.
He also heard something pertaining to Yue’s powers. According to her, Yue seems to have an aptitude for all attributes. When Hajime became aware of this, he muttered to himself with a blank expression, “What, this cheat…” However, Yue was weak in close combat. All she could do was run around with her strengthened body as she rapidly fired off spells. Despite that, in the face of her powerful magic, it wasn’t really that big of a handicap.
By the way, Yue was able to cast magic without any incantation, but she would mutter the names of the spell out of habit. Many people used unique activation words or actions to supplement their magic and get a clearer image. Yue was no exception.
As for her 【Auto-Regeneration】, it was classified as a Unique Magic. As long as she had any remaining magic power, she wouldn’t die unless she was turned into ashes in an instant. Conversely, self-regeneration wouldn’t work if she sustained any injuries in the state of magic depletion. In other words, because her magic power had been drained after being sealed for all those years, Yue would have died if the scorpion had hit her.
“Next… the key point, do you know anything about this place? Or any escape routes to the surface.”
“…I don’t know. But…”
She also seemed to not have any knowledge about this labyrinth. While feeling apologetic, she continued her story with what she knew.
“…It was said that one of the liberators made this labyrinth.”
Hearing an unfamiliar term, Hajime stopped with his transmutation work, so as to not make any disturbing sound as he turned his line of sight towards Yue. She, who had been watching Hajime work, also shifted her line of sight. After nodding her head, she continued her story.
“Liberators… they are the followers of God that challenged him during the Age of God… Legend says they intend to destroy the world.”
Since Yue was an expressionless girl who didn’t talk much, her explanations took a bit of time. On the other hand, Hajime still needed more time to resupply. He realized his firepower was insufficient due to the fight with the scorpion. As a result, he was currently developing a new weapon. While working carefully, he was poised to listen to her.
According to Yue, during the Age of God, seven followers betrayed the god and plotted to destroy the world. However, when their plan failed, they each fled to the ends of the world. Those “ends of the world” were reportedly the current Seven Great Dungeons. This 【Orcus Great Dungeon】 was one of them. It is said that in the deepest part of the abyss was where the liberator lived.
“…If it is there, there might be a way out…”
“I see. There is no need to expend so much effort to climb up the abyss. If it is a magician from the age of gods, it wouldn’t be weird if they had some sort of teleportation magic to take them to the surface.”
Hajime loosened up his cheeks when the possibility was presented before him. He then returned his eyes back to the work in his hands. Yue also turned her eyes back to his hand.
“…Is it that interesting?”
“…… (Nods! Nods! Nods!)”
Yue did not say anything, she just nodded her head strongly to express herself. The image of her wearing that oversized coat and the way her small hands were holding onto her knees was very charming. In addition, her unbelievably well-featured appearance made her look very cuddable.
(But, three hundred years old. As expected of fantasy world. Loli-granny really exist…)
Even if his personality changed, Hajime hadn’t forgotten his Otaku knowledge. As he unintentionally thought of something like that, Yue reacted to it.
“…Hajime, thinking about something strange?”
“Nope, what’s up?”
Hajime deceived her, but he felt that Yue’s — or more precisely the woman’s — sharp intuition was something to be afraid of. His inner self broke out in cold sweat as he continued to work in silence. Yue left it off at that and asked a different question.
“…Hajime, why are you here?”
It was a natural question. This abyss was a genuine land of demons. Other than magic beasts, there was nothing else.
Yue had mountains of question for him. Why can he manipulate magic directly? Why can he use so many types of Unique Magic? How can he eat the flesh of magic beasts and still be okay? What happened to his left arm? Is he really a human? What is the weapon he is using?
Bit by bit, Hajime answered all the questions patiently. Perhaps Hajime might be longing for a conversation himself, he did not seem annoyed at her questions. Looking from certain aspects, Hajime seems to be very fond of Yue. Maybe she was the last resort to prevent him from falling into complete darkness. Perhaps Hajime had already realized this unconsciously.
Hajime started with when his class was summoned to this world. How he was called incompetent by everyone, and how he fell into this abyss after he was betrayed by an unknown classmate during the battle against the Behemoth. The transformation after eating magic beasts. The desire to fight the Talon Bear. About the potion (This is what Hajime called the Sacred Water). About how he developed the modern weapons by basing them on the weapons he had seen in his homeland. As Hajime recounted the events one by one, sniffles could be heard from Yue unwittingly. What happened? When Hajime lifted his head to look at Yue, she was weeping. Startled, Hajime instinctively reached out and wiped off her tears.
“What happened all of a sudden?”
“…Sniffs… Hajime… in pain… I also feel painful…”
Apparently, she was crying for Hajime. He started to stroke her head with a bitter smile after he got over his shock.
“Just forget about it. The business with my classmate is inconsequential. Don’t worry about the small stuff. After getting my revenge, then what? Rather than that, I want to put all my energy in surviving and finding a way home.”
Yue produced a nasal sound. She seemed to be feeling very comfortable with Hajime’s caressing and narrowed her eyes like a cat. However, after she heard Hajime said he wanted to go back to his homeland, she jolted momentarily.
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“Hm? To my original world? Of course. I want to return… I changed a lot but still… home… I want to return home.”
Yue looked down with a sunken expression. Then muttered to herself.
“…I don’t have a place… to return…”
Seeing Yue like this, Hajime stopped brushing Yue’s head and started to scratch his head. He wasn’t that dense. He had more or less felt that Yue was viewing him as a new place to return to. That was the whole reason why she asked him of a new name. Because of this, if Hajime left this world, Yue would be alone again.
Hajime thought to himself: “Even though I have already decided, that I will do anything to reach my goals, but it looks like I’m still too naive,” while he stroked Yue’s head.
“Ah~ If that’s so, want to come with me?”
Yue opened her eyes wide in surprise at Hajime’s words. She was gazing at Hajime with her moistened red eyes that looked restless. Hajime got flustered and started to speak rapidly.
“No, I mean, to my homeland. Well, that’s a world with only average humans. It might be inconvenient for races other than human, with the family registration and whatnot… also, with my current state, I’m not really sure what will happen… but in the end of the day, what is it that Yue want to do?”
Yue was stunned for a while, but when her mind eventually caught up. She timidly asked, “Is that okay?” However, she couldn’t hide the expectations dwelling in her eyes. Her eyes were literally sparkling, Hajime could only nod his head with a forced smile. As if her expressionless face until now was a lie, a smile bloomed on her face. Hajime was mesmerized. When he noticed he was lovestruck, he shook his head in a flurry.
Unable to look at Yue, Hajime devoted himself to his work. Yue took great interest in his work. However, the distance between them had shortened, almost to the point of sticking close together…
Hajime told himself not to mind about it.
“…What, is this?”
Little by little Hajime was finishing up different parts with the transmutation. On the side there was a one meter long cylindrical pipe, a red bullet about twelve centimeters in length, and others parts scattered around.
This was the new weapon Hajime started developing as his new trump card, since Donner was lacking in necessary firepower.
“This is… an Anti-matter Rifle: Railgun version. You saw my gun, right? This is an even more powerful version. The bullet is specially made.”
Just as Hajime said, when all the parts were assembled together, a 1.5 meter long rifle was created. Hajime was considering what he could do to increase the firepower of his guns. Electromagnetic acceleration and combustion charge was the limit for the Donner. The final verdict was that, Donner couldn’t be improved much further anymore. So he had to create a new gun.
Naturally the answer to increase the power was a larger caliber, and the length of the barrel. And the result, was an Anti-matter rifle. It could only load up to one shot but its theoretical power is enormous. In brief, its maximum output was ten times the destructive power of Donner. When an ordinary person fired with Donner, the repulsive force was enough to crush half of their body. Donner was that kind of monster gun.
The gun’s name: Schlagen. In theory, it was about ten times more powerful than Donner… roughly. It was made with the scorpion shell. When he analyzed the shell with 【Mineral Appraisal】, this was the result:
High magic affinity. A special ore where its hardness is increased by the amount of magic power used.
Apparently, that scorpion’s hardness was due to Stella Ore’s property. It probably had a massive amount of magic reservoir to fuel that armor.
Hajime was thinking, “If this is an ore, will I be able to process it?” He gave it a try and was able to accomplish it effortlessly. If that’s the case, he could easily break through the shell with his transmutation! Recalling the hard fought battle before, Hajime felt weak in the knees. This had turned into one of his bitter memories.
Hajime had gotten his hands on a lot of excellent materials to work with, so the result was still all right. He could use these materials to make a sturdier barrel. While Hajime was consoling himself with this, he fired Schlagen. Since he now had more experience compared to the time when he made the Donner, the work progressed more smoothly.
He paid particular attention to the bullets. The bullet was made out of Tauru ore coated with Stella ore. It could be considered a full metal cover… or something like that. In each cartridge, combustion powder was installed with a suitable ratio of compression. After one bullet was completed, as long as he had enough materials, he could use Transmutation Subskill, [+Replicate Transmutation], to mass-produce the bullets effortlessly.
While Hajime talked with Yue endlessly without getting to the point, Schlagen was completed. The gun had a very powerful and brutal form. He finished his work as he indulged with self-satisfaction. After he finished the gun, Hajime started to feel hungry, so he began preparing the meal by grilling the scorpion and cyclops meat.
“Yue, the meal is almost ready… Would it upset your stomach by eating this? That pain is not to be made fun of… no, vampires should be fine with it, right?”
Since his daily meal consisted of magic beast meat, Hajime thoughtlessly invited Yue to eat with him. However, what if something happened to her after she ate it. While thinking like this, Hajime cast a glance at Yue.
Yue stopped playing with Hajime’s invention and shook her head to say, “I don’t need the meal,” to Hajime.
“Well, since you survived for 300 years without eating, I guess there’s no problem… Won’t you feel hungry though?”
“Yes… but, it doesn’t matter anymore.”
“Doesn’t matter anymore? Did you already eat something?”
Her empty stomach had already been satisfied? Hajime looked at Yue with an astonished gaze. Yue pointed at Hajime.
“Ah, my blood. Does that mean a vampire don’t need a meal other than blood?”
“…Food can also provide nourishment… but drinking blood is more effective.”
Seems like vampires could survive with just blood. She had sucked Hajime’s blood earlier and was satisfied with it. Yue stared at Hajime who looked convinced. For some reason, she was licking her lips.
“…Why are you licking your lips?”
“D-Delicious you say. I thought that I would taste terrible considering I’ve eaten so much magic beast flesh…”
From Yue’s description, his blood had a heavy, deep taste similar to a bowl of soup made with all kinds of herb and meat. The first time she had sucked his blood, she fell into a trance. This wasn’t his imagination. Having such a fine meal after starving for so long, getting infatuated was within reasons.
However, Hajime wanted to stop her bewitching lip licking. He realized Yue was past her prime. However, that childish figure coupled with the lewd act, it made Hajime unable to calm down in a certain sense.
“…Please spare me from this.”
In all sorts of meaning, she might might be the most dangerous partner. Hajime broke out in a cold sweat.
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Omake (Not related to the main story)
Shizuka: “K-Kaori? You just clicked your tongue…”
Kaori: “Eh? What’s the matter Shizuku-chan?”
Shizuka: “N-No. It’s nothing…”
Kaori: “…Thieving Cat.”
Kaori: “Fufu, it’s nothing, Shizuku-chan. I just felt like someone was threatening my position.”
Shizuka: “I don’t think this can be considered nothing…”