|Author: Tsunose Bun||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 3024 characters|
|Translator: Jiro||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1168 words|
“Damn. I have a bad feeling bout this.”
Svemir uttered, turning to face Merc and Foldia just as they were about to enter the forest.
“Don ya feel anything?”
“Are you talking about the eyes watching us from the forest?” Merc asked.
“I noticed those too.”
Foldia added, readily affirming Svemir’s hunch.
Both Merc and Foldia had determined that there was no use in informing the others about the presence as they had to take the route through the forest anyhow. It had also served as a means of gauging Svemir’s ability. Merc might have become concerned if he hadn’t been able to detect the presence before they entered the forest.
Or maybe he noticed earlier but wanted to test us instead? What a sly geezer.
“Aight then!” Svemir said casually.
“E-Eyes? Presence? I-Is there a Magic Beast?” Edin questioned, startled by what he had just heard. In response, Foldia calmly explained.
“I don’t think it’s Magic Beasts. If they were, they would have attacked us right away. It’s not like there’s some spell that’s preventing them from leaving the forest. Sly Magic Beasts that intend to ambush their victims are more adept at concealing their presence than this.”
“I-I see. What else might it be if it’s not Magic Beasts? Is the presence possibly human?”
“Right on the money. Still, human opponents are a bit tricky… Isn’t that right Merc?”
Foldia looked at Merc and asked with a devious smirk. Merc, in turn, simply nodded.
“That’s correct. When it comes to Magic Beasts, if you can sense their presence, they aren’t powerful.”
“Isn’t that the same with humans?” Edin asked.
“Listen here, pal. Normal folks can’t just hang around here and snoop. By wat we learned in Ruho, the strongest Magic Beast here is just a Yellow-Green Grade, and that for a Grade 4 Adventurer, passing should be simple. But in other words, it also means that in order to be here, one must be at least a Grade 4 Adventurer. And I don think a Grade 4 Adventurer could be so cocky.”
“I agree with the old man. The enemy is deliberately directing their hostile intent towards us. Most likely to stop us from going inside.”
“B-But why would they do that?”
Edin asked, clearly struggling to keep up because he wasn’t an adventurer. In an effort to keep up with the different speakers, Edin would whip his head in different directions. The scene amused Merc quite a bit.
“In any case, this implies that something is happening in the forest or outside of the forest, most likely in Mr. Edin’s village…” Foldia said.
“Fufu. We don’t know their purpose, but it’s not like we have other options. We have no choice but to go in. Mr. Edin don’t worry, we three…Oh, that’s not quite right. Please disregard this meathead. Try and stay close to Mr. Svemir and I.” Merc said in retaliation to Foldia’s earlier remark.
“Hey! Even if I declined the request, you shouldn’t act like such a jerk!”
Foldia exclaimed, seemingly a bit offended. As if to follow up, Svemir patted him on the shoulder and said,
“Missy’s right. Ya’ll be a useful scarecrow against humans. Ya look quite strong after all.”
“Hehe. Indeed, I am strong.”
“Well then, let’s get moving.”
Merc said, quickening her stride, leaving behind the man who’d once rescued the world and was lauded as a hero. This surprised even Svemir, who shook his head and walked after her alongside Edin.
“That’s going way too far, Merc!”
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As he was being left behind, Foldia cried out, sounding gravely pained. But Merc just pretended not to hear him.
The group quickly arrived in the forest after that.
“?! Get back! That’s an Im Ega (Sleeping Snake)… One bite and ya’ll be transported to dreamland!”
After evading the snake that plunged down at him from one of the trees, Svemir yelled and pulled his knife out.
The huge white snake with light blue markings was a Magic Beast that Merc had encountered before, in her previous life. Its name was Im Ega.
It was a Green Grade Magic Beast, and despite its size, it was renowned for its agility. What made it annoying was that its fangs contained powerful sleeping venom. Anyone who was bitten would enter a coma that would last for two to three days, during which the Im Ega would consume them.
“The bugger’s weak spot is the neck! It won’t be easy to kill it if you attack anywhere else!”
After unleashing an assault at the Im Ega that the snake easily evaded, Svemir shouted to Merc and Foldia.
It went without saying that Merc and Foldia were already aware of all of it. However, it was common for an impromptu gathering to exchange info, as well as warn each other.
Some adventurers were reluctant to provide even the smallest details, but Svemir seemed to not be one of them.
“It’s been a while since I’ve last seen an Im Ega. It’s been ages since I last fought one.” When Merc saw the Im Ega, a Magic Beast she hadn’t faced since her previous life, she smiled and drew out her real sword.
Then, moving even faster than the Im Ega, she threw her body in the direction of the snake.
Astounded that Merc had outpaced it, the Im Ega lost its cool and carelessly extended its head.
Merc swung her blade while deftly dodging the Im Ega’s fangs, which were oozing sleeping venom. When Merc turned back to look at her victim, she noticed that a fountain of blood was gushing forth from the Im Ega’s neck.
“Phew! Not bad missy!” Svemir whistled as he marveled at Merc’s swift annihilation of a Green Grade Magic Beast.
Edin, on the other hand, who had been frozen in place due to the shock until this point, hastily turned his head away from the dead body of Im Ega. It seemed that the blood fountain was simply too much for him.
“You’re moving a lot better now.” Foldia remarked, praising Merc.
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As Foldia, who was aware of her true abilities, complimented her, Merc asked with a smile on her face. She then proceeded to tuck her weapon aside.
“I’ll be confiscating this sword.”
Foldia seized Merc’s sword just as she was going to put it away.
“Although it may be difficult to find weapons that can compete with the Fortifying and Stout swords, you ought to at least use something better than this.”
“Look here. What weapon I use is my business. Heck, if I want to, I can even use a wooden stick.”
Foldia’s usual fetish caught Merc off guard, and she recovered her blade. But all that did was make Foldia appear miserable.
“I know that it’s not my business. It’s only that I want better swordsmen than myself to wield excellent swords.”
“You really are a piece of work.”
Merc replied, baffled by Foldia’s odd reasoning.