Hajime continued his conquest of the Dungeon.
After passing through the quagmire level, he had now advanced to the fiftieth level. Hajime had already lost his sense of time, he had no idea how many days had passed since he started on this journey. Despite that, he was progressing with an astonishing pace. All this while, he had went through deathmatches against several magic beasts that could only be described as unreasonably strong.
For example, on a level that was completely covered by thin poisonous fog, he was attacked by a two meter long rainbow-colored frog with poisonous spit and then there was a moth (with outer appearance like that of Mothra ⌈1⌋) that released paralyzing scales. If it was not for the Sacred Water, he might have already died several times over, simply from exploring the Dungeon.
The iridescent frog’s poison directly affects the nervous system of its target, and it made Hajime experience a pain similar to when he first ate magic beasts’ meat. He would have died if not for the sacred water he had prepared in advance, behind his molars. The thing Hajime placed at his molars was a small container made from a very thin layer of stone, which makes it easily crushable with the teeth. It was really fortunate that he had this prepared in case of emergencies.
Naturally, he had ate both of them. He was a bit reluctant when it came to eating the moth, but in order to strengthen himself, he could only steel himself to eat it. Hajime felt it was somewhat frustrating that it was a bit more delicious than the frog.
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Furthermore, despite being in an underground labyrinth, there was a level which appeared to be a dense forest. The immensely dense humidity made it the most uncomfortable place up till date. This level’s magic beasts include giant centipedes and trees.
He was traversing through the jungle when a giant centipede suddenly fell from the treetops. As expected, Hajime felt extremely nauseated at the sight of it, and started to develop goose bumps all over his body. Moreover, this centipede was a type of magic beast that attacks by detaching its body into several parts, fighting one of them was like fighting thirty black cockroaches in the kitchen. At first, Hajime tried to fight them off by continuously shooting with Donner, but the numbers were too overwhelming. It would take a lot of time to reload, so he decided to switch over to 【Air Claw】 and tear them apart directly. He even had to resort to kicking, which he was unused to, it was literally a desperate fight for his life. It was at this time that Hajime decided to hone his quick reloading skills and brush up on his kicking techniques. While bathed in the purple fluids from the torn centipede, Hajime heaved a disappointed sigh.
Incidentally, the tree magic beast were similar to Treants in RPG games. Its subterranean roots would suddenly attack from underground and also acted like whips to lash at enemies. However, the greatest trait of these treant-like creatures were not these kind of trivial attacks. When these magic beasts sensed danger, they would fling the red fruits that were hanging on their branches. There was absolutely zero offensive power, so Hajime tried eating the fruit. Following that, he just stood there, paralyzed, for more than ten minutes. It was not due to poison or anything. Rather, it was ridiculously delicious. The deliciously juicy red fruit was more like a watermelon than an apple.
It completely blew away the unpleasantness he felt from this level, or rather, he had temporarily forgotten his dungeon conquest. It was the only thing he had eaten other than monster meat over this long duration. Hajime’s eyes completely turned into those of a hunter, and vigorously hunt down those treant-like preys. By the time he was satisfied and continued his labyrinth capturing, the treant-like creatures were already on the brink of extinction.
Pushing on through the dungeon with such feelings, before he knew it, he was already on the fiftieth level, and yet there was still no end in sight. By the way, Hajime’s current status was…
|Nagumo Hajime||17 Year old||Male|
|Magic Power:||760||Magic Resistance:||760|
|Transmutation [+Mineral Appraisal] [+Precise Transmutation] [+Mineral Investigation] [+Mineral Separation] [+Mineral Fusion] [+Replicate Transmutation] • Magic Manipulation • Iron Stomach • Lightning Clad • Divine Step [+Aerodynamic] [+Ground Shrink] [+Grand Kick] • Air Claw • Night Vision • Farsight • Presence Perception • Magic Perception • Hide Presence • Poison Resistance • Paralysis Resistance • Petrification Resistance • Language Comprehension|
Hajime was currently at the base he created on the 50th level, actively refining his transmutation, as well as gun and kicking techniques. In reality, Hajime had already discovered the stairs to the lower level, but the reason he chose to stop here was because this place was clearly unusual.
It was an indescribably eerie space. At the end of the path of this empty space, there was a three meter tall double doors with impressively adorned decorations. On the flanks of the doors were two one-eyed giant sculptures, with half of their bodies embedded within the walls, as if they enshrined there.
Hajime felt chills running down his spine the moment he set foot in there, the danger making him retreat temporarily. Naturally, Hajime had no intentions of avoiding it after putting his preparations in order. There was finally a “change”, it was out of the question to not investigate.
Hajime was filled with both expectations and dread. He was positive that the moment he opens these doors, there would be some sort of calamity or disaster awaiting him. Yet, however, at the same time, it also gave off the feeling that he could finally see a fresh breeze blowing.
“It’s just like a Pandora’s box… I wonder, what kind of hope will it hold?”
Checking the fighting techniques, weapons, as well as the skills he currently possessed one by one, he confirmed that he was in perfect condition. Completing his preparations, Hajime drew Donner. Then, he lightly pressed it against his forehead and closed his eyes. He had already made up his resolution a long time ago. However, there was no harm in repeating it again. Hajime dived into his innermost depths, and voiced his oath.
“I will survive and return home. Japan, home…… I will go back. Any obstacles shall become my enemies. And enemies, I…… kill!”
Hajime opened his eyes with the usual fearless smile on his face.
Hajime vigilantly advanced and arrived in front of the door without any incident. On a closer look, he noticed the decorations were even more extravagant than he originally thought. At the center, he realized that there were two magic formations that were drawn in the recesses.
“…? I don’t understand. I’ve studied quite a lot, but… I have never seen these formulas before.”
When he was being called incompetent, Hajime focused on expanding his knowledge to make up for his low abilities. Naturally, he couldn’t have learned all there is to know, but even so, it was strange that he was completely unable to recognize any of the formulas that make up this magic formation.
“Could it be… from an old system?”
While he was guessing, Hajime inspected the door, but he still couldn’t understand anything. Not meaning anything in particular, Hajime was on high alert as he checked for traps, but it does not seem like Hajime would be able to decipher these with his current level of knowledge.
“It can’t be helped. Let’s just pass through with transmutation as usual.”
No matter how much he pushed or pulled the door, it still didn’t budge. Thus, he attempted to force his way through with transmutation.
Hajime then placed his right palm on the door and began to transmute. However, just as he was about to start transmuting. Crack! Crack!
A red electrical discharge ran through the door and repelled Hajime’s hand. His hand was releasing smoke. Cursing, Hajime drank the Sacred Water to recover. Immediately after, an unusual event occurred.
Suddenly, a deep roar resonated in the entire room. Hajime took some distance from the door by backstepping. He dropped his hand to his waist, touching the horizontal holster, ready to draw and shoot at any time immediately.
While the cries continued to echo throughout the room, the true identity of the voice started to move.
“Well, this is a cliche among cliches.”
Muttering while smiling bitterly to himself, the walls around where the two one-eyed giants were engraved beside the door started to crumble. Before he knew it, the grayish skin that resembled the wall has turned dark green.
The one-eyed giants looked exactly like the cyclops that appeared in fantasies. They were holding four meter long greatswords that appeared out of nowhere in their hands. Trying to forcefully free their bodies which were still half buried in order to eliminate the untactful trespasser, they turned their sights towards Hajime.
At that moment, Dopan!
With a terrific cannon roar, an electromagnetically accelerated bullet made from Tauru ore pierced through the right cyclops’ only eye, and blew its brain out. After penetrating through the back of cyclops’ head, the bullet continued on and pulverized the wall behind it. The cyclops at the left side could only stare blankly at the neighbouring cyclops. The shot cyclops twitched twice before its body started to collapse forward. The impact caused by its huge body shook the entire room, raising thick clouds of dust.
“Sorry, I’m not the type of antagonist who would read the atmosphere and wait for you.”
That was an outright devious attack! No, considering the hell Hajime had experienced, that was only a natural reflex. Still… cyclops (right) was a little too pitiful.
They were probably sealed here as gatekeepers. It is safe to say that there had never been any visitors to this place, which was even deeper than the abyss of the Dungeon. Who knows, maybe his(?) heart was filled with joy at the fact that the time to fulfil its responsibilities was finally here.
Their long awaited appearance did not even reach the point where it was able to see who its opponent was, before the all important cyclops head was completely blown into smithereens. If you couldn’t call this pitiful, then what would be considered pitiful?
Cyclops (left) turned its sight towards Hajime with a horrified expression. Its eye seemed to be saying “What did this guy just do?!” Cyclops (left) glared at Hajime without moving. It had no knowledge of Hajime’s weapon, the gun, thus it warily lowered its waist to prepare for any sudden movements as it continued to stare at Hajime. Ten seconds, twenty seconds…… Hajime remained unmoving no matter how much time passed. Cyclops (left) lost its patience, and it let out a mighty roar as it stepped forward.
Immediately after, Cyclops (left) dived face first into the ground. The moment it took a step forward, it lost its balance and fell as though all its strength had left it. Cyclops (left) did not understand the situation, as it raged to get up, but was unable to muster any strength. Hajime slowly approached the struggling cyclops which was letting out a low growl. The steady footsteps were like a countdown. Stopping before the fallen Cyclops (left)’s eye, Hajime pressed the muzzle against its head. Then without any hesitation, the trigger was pulled.
The gunshot echoed across the entire room. However, an unexpected event happened. Cyclops (left)’s body seemed to glow for a split second, and following that, the bullet which scored a direct hit was repelled by the skin.
Hajime guessed that it must have used its Unique Magic. The Cyclops’ Unique Magic appears to increase its defence significantly.
The fallen Cyclops (left) which was lying face-down curved its lips as though ridiculing Hajime. Hajime paid no heed as he removed the muzzle and sent a kick towards Cyclops (left)’s head.
Using 【Grand Kick】, Hajime’s kick traced an arc as beautiful as the Kicking Rabbit’s and completely flipped Cyclops (left) face-up. Then, he once again pushed the muzzle towards the Cyclops’s exposed eye.
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Hajime felt like the Cyclops was trying to say “W-Wait a moment!” but he simply ignored it and pulled the trigger. As expected, the strengthening did not affect the eye, the bullet easily penetrated and pulverized Cyclops (left)’s head.
“Hmm, approximately twenty seconds. It’s a little slow… is it because of their sheer size?”
Hajime observed the cyclops to analyze the test result. Why did Cyclops (left) suddenly fall over and became unable to move? It was because of the 【Paralysis Grenade】. Packing the gathered scales from the Mothra-like monster into a grenade, once it has been scattered by the small-scale explosion, the enemy would end up paralyzed. The instant when Cyclops (left) was distracted by Cyclops (right) falling, Hajime secretly dispersed the scales.
“Well, it doesn’t matter. I’ll just retrieve the meat later…”
Hajime glanced at the door and pondered a little. Then using 【Air Claws】, he tore apart the cyclops and took out the magic stones from within. Paying no attention to the wet blood, holding up the two fist-sized magic stones into the two holes on the door, they were a perfect fit. Following that, a dark red magical light burst forth from the magic stone and started pouring magic power into the magic square. And then, along with a splitting sound, the light settled down. At the same time, the magic power has spread throughout the entire room, causing the surrounding walls to glow. It has been a long time since he had saw such brilliant radiance.
Hajime blinked his eyes several times, as he cautiously and gently opened the door.
Behind the door was void of even a single light source and shrouded in total darkness, it seemed to stretch for a large area. With the lighting from the previous room and his 【Night Vision】 skill, Hajime was able to make out the complete picture of the room little by little. Two columns of thick stone pillars lined up all the way into the depths. It was as magnificent as the marble ones he saw in the Saint’s Church. Near the center of the room was a huge stone cube, its smooth surface reflected the light that shone into the room, giving it a brilliant lustre.
Hajime gazed steadily at the cube, and noticed something shiny swelling from the center front of the cube.
After verifying his surroundings, Hajime tried to keep the door fixed open. Generally speaking, if it was a horror movie, the moment he entered the room, the door would be slammed shut with a loud bang.
However, before Hajime could fix the door in place, it moved.
It was a hoarse and frail female voice. Hajime had a little jump and hurriedly looked towards the center of the room. There, the previously “swelling thing” was starting to move. The light that was shining in, revealed its identity.
That “swelling thing” was actually a person. Her entire body was buried within the cube, with only the head exposed. Her hanging long blond hair was reminiscence of the female ghost from a certain horror movie. Moreover, the red pupils peeping from the gaps of her hair were like blood moons. She looked to be roughly around 12 to 13 years old. It might be hard to tell from her haggard, hanging hair, but even that was unable to hide her beautiful appearance.
Hajime stiffened at this unexpected occurrence, while the girl with red eyes was staring at him. Before long, Hajime took in a slow deep breath and exclaimed with a determined expression;
“I’m sorry. I made a mistake.”