[Vol. 5] Chapter 6 – Exploration

“Crescent Moon, Kouga village was around here, right?”

“Yeah, you remembered well. Don’t get careless, they might watch us.”

 Crescent Moon answered my question earnestly.

“What’s that Kouga village you are talking about?”

“You, you don’t even know that? Is that what they call ignorance?”

 Kitora who sat behind Doji on the same horse hurls biting words at him.
 Doji looked offended for an instant but didn’t say anything.
 I get it, he doesn’t want to anger her and be used for “that”.

“Doji do you remember the men wearing black who attacked us in the capital?”

“Yeah, the time Ca……Akatsuki-sama and Frau-san had their secret date, right?”

 Oops, that was dangerous, those were things I did as Carlo.
 Though Crescent Moon and Knopf know that Akatsuki and Carlo are one and the same person, Pick and Kitora don’t.
 Doji, good job for noticing that.
 But this confusing setting isn’t something I can handle, I think.

“Secret date, huh? Mister does this at other places as well?”

 Crescent Moon looked at me coldly.
 Isn’t it fine? It doesn’t have anything to do with you anyway!

“Ehem. Anyway, those fellows come from Kouga village. They seem to be called the dark army.”

“The dark army, huh? That sounds kind of cool”

“The Rabbit Group is also cool! Right, big bro?”

 Pick, that’s slightly different.
 Though I gave them this uncool name to punish you it seems to be well liked.

“What might a Rabbit Group be?”

“It’s the name big bro Akatsuki gave our group. Cool, right?”

 Pick proudly explained this to Kitora.

“Ye, yeah……that’s right. I think it’s a good name.”

 Even Kitora with her sharp tongue wasn’t able to give her honest opinion when faced with those sparkling eyes.
 She answered awkwardly while avoiding her gaze.

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“Right~? Big sis Crescent Moon is also included. Why don’t you enter the Rabbit Group as well, Kitora?”

“Eh, ehm, I’ll have to decline. Look, I’m already serving the god, Gladis”

“I see, that’s a shame”

 Crescent Moon and Knopf who heard this exchange butted in from behind.

“Hey, hey, I think I heard something dangerous there. Who entered the Rabbit Group at what point of time? I don’t remember entering such a strange group!”

“Eeh~, big sis was our honorary member since a long time ago. Kind of like a vice-head!”

“Give me a break. I’ve been a one-woman-group, a lone wolf up until now. There’s no way I’d become your comrade”

 As she said that Crescent Moon charged ahead at full speed with her horse.

“Good grief, big sis sure is shy”

 Pick wasn’t discouraged at all.
 You’re pretty optimistic.

 Meanwhile, we arrived at the Stone Labyrinth’s entrance.
Nothing noteworthy happened on our journey either.
 The stone arch and the stairs were unchanged from the time we last came here.
 It’s an S grade dungeon which claimed many victims so we can’t be careless.

“Well then, what’s your purpose for participating in this exploration this time?”

 Knopf looked around into each of our faces.

“For me, it’s money, of course. I’ll make a profit by finding treasures no one was able to find before”

 Crescent Moon’s eyes have already turned into $ marks.
 Though I say this I agree with her this time.
 Anyway, it’s hopeless if I don’t earn any money.

“I only came along to protect Akatsuki-sama, I don’t have any special purpose other than that.”

“I came along as it seemed interesting though I’d be happy if I could earn some money.”

 Doji and Pick gave such reasons.

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“As for me, let’s see. I’d like to confirm something I was a little concerned about last time.”

“What does that mean?”

“Hmm, well, I’ll talk about it later. For now, it’s a s-e-c-r-e-t.”⌈1

 The beautiful Priestess of Darkness Kitora winked at Pick and the cat-eared magician.
 Though I have that feeling it’s nothing good or is that just my imagination?

“Understood. I just have an academical interest so I don’t have any particular purpose in doing this exploration. Akatsuki-san, how do we do this?”

“Let’s see, in battle Doji and I will be the vanguard, Pick and Crescent Moon will be the attack group and Kitora and Knopf will support us with magic from behind.”

“Mister, is it fine if Pick and I take the front when we walk through the labyrinth’s passageways?”

“Yeah, because there might be traps, huh? Then please do so.”

“Okay, then Mister will take the back in case of a raid or surprise attack.”

 Like this our formation was decided.
 During the exploration Pick and Crescent Moon form the vanguard after them there are Knopf, Kitora and Doji followed by me who forms the rear-guard.
 This formation is great for letting Knopf and I illuminate the way from the back and front with our light ball spell.
 I take out the sketch I made last time and writing instruments from my bag.

OK, shall we go?

“Going into the right passageway of the first crossroad leads to the room with the centipedes and the left one leads to the spider’s room. What should we do? Should we take a quick look just to make sure?”

“I’m good. I couldn’t sell the spider threads for much and it was uselessly hard to get as well. Therefore it’s fine already.”

 When I asked Crescent Moon let her shoulders slump and shook her head.
 Was the yarn which my seniors painstakingly took back that much less worth?
 A waste of energy for a thankless job, wait, Crescent Moon wasn’t the one who had to go through this hardship!
 Poor seniors, please sleep peacefully.

“Let’s advance deeper then. To the place where that trap was.”

 The two in front nodded to Kitora’s words.
 As no one objected to this we went straight to the passage paved with stone.
 On our way, we also went through the room with the slime in it.

“It was probably around here”

 As Pick said this she immediately starts to check the stone on the floor.
 As we expected, the trap door mechanism on the floor has returned to its former shape.
 It’s evident that someone is managing this labyrinth and restored this trap.

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