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Chapter 12 – Welcome to Elnato ③

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Author: Akashari Original Source: Syosetu
Translator: Mui English Source: Re:Library

“…Well, the documents seem fine. Now, let’s assess your aptitude!”
“Aptitude…?”

After finishing the paperwork, we were led to another room as if we were expected to follow.

It seemed to be a training area, with swords and leather shields hung on the walls, and in the center of the room stood humanoid figures made of wood and clay.

“We need to assess your aptitude before we can recommend any jobs. Can you handle a sword?”
“I don’t think Master can.”
“Hey now, don’t make assumptions. Even with a sword this light, I can still wield it with my might!”
“Hey, be careful! Don’t overdo it.”

I picked up a sword from the wall and attempted to lift it, but all I managed to do was drag its tip along the floor.

Hmm, perhaps this is made of some new ultra-heavy metal created while I was imprisoned?

“If even a training sword won’t do, you’ll have to wait. For now, let the Outlander try.”
“Okay! …Uh, Ms. Stella, what are we doing?”
“It’s simple. You’re free to use any of the weapons on the wall to attack that clay figure over there.”

Saying so, she pointed at the clay figure standing in the center of the room. It didn’t seem that tough. Though they have been dulled, it seemed like it would easily break if you hit it with any of the prepared weapons.

“Um, is it okay to break it?”
“Well, if you can break it, that’s great. Okay, I’ll make it move now.”
“Move? What do you mean… Huuuh!?”

Stella pulled out a gem-like object from her pocket, causing the clay figure to react and start moving erratically around the room.

“Wow! What in the world is that thing!?”
“It’s a test golem. Its movements may be unsettling, but can you catch it?”
“I see, so this is why it’s used to judge one’s combat abilities.”

While the movements were erratic, it was indeed difficult for an amateur to catch this unpredictable motion.

I doubted Momo’s combat experience would be of much help; rushing in carelessly could lead to more than just minor injuries.

Yet, the mechanism behind it was intriguing. Was it controlled by that gem? It seemed to operate on a system distinct from both magecraft and magic…

“Well, in that case… I’ll borrow this sword.”
“Don’t push yourself, Momo. Shall I handle it first?”
“I’ll be fine. I’ll time it right… Now!”

Seizing the split-second freeze when the golem landed, Momo kicked off the ground.

Closing a distance of at least ten paces in one breath, she swung the borrowed sword with a swift horizontal slash. There was no time for evasion.

The golem’s head flew off cleanly, crashing into the wall and turning to dust.

“Wow! I’m sorry!”
“Why are you apologizing? You were told it was okay to break it.”
“Well, yes, but… this.”

Momo handed me the sword, its handle twisted like a rag. I tentatively tapped the handle, confirming it was indeed metal.

“Don’t worry about it. It was probably forged by an apprentice smith anyway. But that’s some incredible strength you’ve got there.”

Stella examined the sword she retrieved from Momo.

Fortunately, at least the blade was intact. While the handle might not be salvageable, it wasn’t likely to be an expensive sword anyway.

“Seems like a Gift, huh? Powerful, but risky to deploy in combat.”
“Can’t afford to involve allies, after all. Also, the golem broke, do you have a replacement?”
“We’ve got spares, but are you up for it too, kid?”
“I’m not a kid; think of me as a bundle of potential.”

With Momo’s successful conquest, there was an evident sense of rivalry.

But having seen the opponent’s movements once, there were plenty of countermeasures to employ against that level of speed.

“Sorry to rush you, but could you prepare one? Time’s of the essence.”
“Sure, but if it seems too much, don’t hesitate to give up.”

As Stella infused magic into the gem, another golem of the same design burst forth from a wooden box at the back of the room.

Though its movements were wild, there were clear openings, especially during landings, just as Momo had exploited.

Or perhaps it intentionally left large openings to make it easier for beginners to defeat.

“…Master, are you just going to watch?”
“Nope, it’s already down.”
“Huh?”

Observation concluded. There was no point in prolonging the situation, so I signaled with a snap of my fingers, and the bustling golem instantly exploded into pieces.

“……W-What did you just do, Master?”
“I sent compressed air blasts into the joints to cause internal explosions. It’s a simple enough manipulation that doesn’t require an incantation.”

The poor golem lay in shattered fragments, its upper half completely destroyed, making any chance of revival impossible.

With the weapon undamaged and this outcome, I’d surely redeemed myself in front of Momo.

“Hey, kid… can you… use magic?”
“I’m not a kid, and it’s not magic; I’m a wizard. Also, I’m not a kid; I hold the limitless potential to–”
“Yeah, yeah, we’ll talk about that later, Master.”
“Hey, don’t just pick me up! This is important! Really, it is! Look, I’m actually taller and stronger than I seem, you know!”

✦✧✦✧✦

“Well, both of you have proven your fighting capabilities. Congratulations, you’re approved!”

Returning to the reception, Stella handed over a black metallic plate. Carved on the surface was my name, while on the back, two diamond-shaped gems were embedded.

Though it appeared simple, I could sense complex magical waves emanating from it. It seemed more than just a name tag.

“Is this the guild card?”
“That’s right. As long as you have it, you’re a member of the guild. Don’t lose it.”
“I might as well put it around my neck with a chain. What are these gems on the back for?”
“That’s your rank. Right now, you’re two-star on a ten-tier scale.”

It seemed like a precaution to prevent higher-ranking members from monopolizing lower-tier quests. While it made sense, there was something puzzling.

“Why do we start with two stars? Shouldn’t newcomers begin at one?”
“Well, considering how capable you both seem, it’s a bonus. I’m guaranteeing you have at least the skills of a two-star!”
“Wow, thank you!”

While Momo expressed genuine gratitude, advancing in rank meant taking on more dangerous tasks. So, an increase in stars wasn’t entirely positive. Yet, with just two stars, there wasn’t much need to worry yet…

“So, once again, welcome to Elnato… By the way, do you have a place to stay tonight?”
“………Ah.”

Looking out the window, I noticed the sun was already setting, casting an orange hue in the sky as it transitioned into the darkness of night. Even if we were to run now, finding available accommodation would be difficult. Besides, we didn’t have any money.

“…Well, Momo, looks like we’re camping out tonight.”
“N-No way!”

In just a few days since being dropped into this world 1000 years in the future, we were reminded of the importance of the basics: food, clothing, and shelter.



 

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