Chapter 23: The dungeon behind the house

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Author: Shizuku Original Source: Syosetu Word Count: 3137 characters
Translator: Nomad English Source: Re:Library Word Count:1394 words
Editor(s): Robinxen

Ophelia leads us through the dense forest, and we reach a large cave eventually. A large opening on the side of a hill, and pitch black inside, telling us it went on deep underground.

“This cave is a Steel Spider nest.”
“Here..?”

Mir sounds nervous hearing Ophelia, looking into the cave with an unsure look. I approach Ophelia and talk to her in a low voice, so Mir can’t hear.

“Umm, Mistress, can I ask something?”
“What is it?”

I felt something on our way here, and now that we arrived I’m almost convinced.

“We’re right behind the house, right?”

I can see a red brick wall peeking through the trees to the side. Mir can’t see it because of the barrier, but that doesn’t affect me.

“Keep it secret from Mir. It’s not that I don’t trust her, I just don’t want anyone to know about it.”

Ophelia lowers her voice to a murmur. I understand she has things she keeps to herself, and I won’t pry too much unless she wants to talk about it. I nod and look at the cave again.

“But a cave, huh. At least I can use light magic to see, then.”

While I still struggle with any form of offensive magic, at least I can use more miscellaneous spells in these situations.

“No issues then.”
“If you say so.”

Hearing Ophelia say there were no issues made me feel slightly unsure. Somehow I feel like she’ll put me through a harsh experience again, for experience’s sake.

“Let’s go then.”
“Okay!”

Mir and I step inside. Wait, huh?

“I’ll stay outside and make sure no monsters follow you inside, good luck you two.”

Woah, somehow she’s grinning even more than the time Olivia left.

“So it’ll just be the two of us?”

Mir looks even more unsure. I feel the same. There’s no guarantee we can win again if a monster like the Tyrannoghavial appears again.

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“Don’t worry, Steel Spiders are really weak. And my magic is so strong it might collapse the entire cave if I use it.”
“But Mistress-”

-I remember seeing you take out a low level monster barely moving?

“Hm, what?”

She interrupts me before I can finish. I’m not an idiot, I know she interrupted me on purpose.

“Sorry, it’s nothing.”
“Alright, then be on your way.”

I knew it. It’s unfair and dangerous, but she’s determined to send us two alone.

“Light up this space, Float Light!”

I chant as we walk inside, creating a small light that floated above us with the spell. At least we’ll be able to see our surroundings this way.

“You really know how to do everything, huh.”

Mir sounds impressed, but she’s really overestimating me.

“Not at all. I’m terrible at any offensive spell, and I’m a novice at hand-to-hand combat. I rely solely on my gun, so my defenses have a lot of holes.”
“So you also have holes…”

Somehow I feel like Mir’s face just got redder1.

“Your face looks red, are you okay?”
“I-I’m fine!”
“If you say so. But don’t force yourself if you’re feeling unwell.”

There’s a stark difference in air temperature inside and outside the cave, so I’m worried her body might have suffered from that. I’m also worried about any noxious gasses that might exist in the cave, which Ophelia didn’t mention, but I don’t breathe so I need Mir to tell me if she notices something.

The cave is slanted downwards, so I have to pay attention to where I put my feet too. Mir is our vanguard, so I just follow her inside. Like I mentioned earlier, I’m bad at close quarters combat, so we had no other choice. We continue walking for a while and encounter a monster.

“Kii kii!”

A large bat. It’s alone, so it probably got separated from its group.

“Hyahh!”

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Mir’s Ghavial Sword easily cuts the bat in two.

“That was amazing.”
“I know, Ophelia really made it more powerful.”

I meant Mir’s strength though.

“This bat aside, there really don’t seem to be many monsters here. I really thought we’d see a lot more of them considering this is a nest.”

Mir’s question is valid, but I don’t believe it’s as strange as she seems to think.

“These monsters usually live in dark caves. I guess they’re hesitant to approach a light.”
“Ah, you might be right.”
“I don’t know for sure, so don’t lower your guard though.”

We continue going deeper, but no monsters ambush us, and the few we encounter die almost instantly. But we still can’t find the Steel Spiders we’re after.

“Should we really keep going?”
“Yeah, I’m starting to get worried too. Ah!”

Mir suddenly raises her voice and points into the darkness.

“I just saw a Steel Spider there!”

I pour more mana into Float Light and illuminate the area. I see it. A black spider the size of a rabbit. It doesn’t seem to like the light, as it quickly scurries into the shadows.

“Let’s go after it!”
“Yeah!”

We chase the spider, going further down the cave. The Steel Spider probably did live nearby, as it knew the cave’s layout, easily running through the scattered rocks without slowing down. It was a big difference to the two of us visiting for the first time. But it wasn’t fast enough to outrun us.

We kept tripping on the rocks, but we could still see the spider ahead of us. After some time of chasing, we reached a larger cavern. The ceiling was high, and there was around twenty meters of distance between the sides. The Steel Spider stops, turning to us as if thinking of something.

“Well, time to fight then.”

I take out Black Hawk and aim at the spider. But Mir remains still, not taking her sword.

“What happened, Mir? You don’t want to defeat it and take the materials?”

While I ask, Mir looks up and starts to tremble. I follow her gaze.

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“Wha-”

The entire ceiling was covered in spider silk, a nest. There’s a large purple spider in the center, and around it smaller black ones, wriggling constantly. All eight of the large spider’s eyes are looking at us.

“Ugh, there’s so many little ones, it’s so creepy…”

Mir didn’t mind one or two large spiders, but seeing such a large group had a strong impact on her mind. It was a reasonable reaction for a girl. But her hand is firmly on her sword, she knows what she has to do.

“Mir, I’ll attack from range, it’ll be your turn afterwards!”
“Got it!”

Mir’s sword would never reach the spiders on the ceiling, only Black Hawk has the reach.

First shot!

Clink

“…”

I must’ve seen that wrong.
Again.

Clink

“…”
“Umm, Natalia?”

O-one more time.

Clink

“…”
“Could it be…”

The bullets are getting destroyed.

Unlike the Tyrannoghavial that received a small amount of damage from my bullets, the Steel Spiders nullify my attacks entirely. In other words, the Tyrannoghavial had so much HP that it could ignore my bullets, but the Steel Spiders have a strong shell that doesn’t receive any damage.

Shoop!

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A Steel Spider forms a bundle of Steel Silk, which it shoots towards me. I jump to the side and dodge it, but I get scared thinking it would hit me directly.

The large spider continues shooting without rest, creating a shower of Steel Silk. Mir also starts dodging them, and hitting a few with her sword to derail them. I focus mana onto my left hand, and use the magic blade to help me too.

But we won’t get anywhere this way. Even if my body can’t get tired, Mir will reach her limit eventually. Either that, or the entire room will get filled with silk and we won’t be able to move.

“Kuh…”

Sparks fly from the Steel Silk hitting my magic blade, together with a screeching sound. I push it away, bracing my legs from the impact. The large spider did not show any signs of stopping. I really have no other choice now.

“Mir, think you can handle it alone for a bit?”
“I think I can keep going, but what are you going to do?”

As we speak, our eyes continue focused on the large spider. At least I have permission now.

“I’ll attempt to fight from a shorter distance.”



References

  1. Robinxen: Her mind works in mysterious ways.

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