15-25. Dungeon's Function
Satou's here. I wonder since when was it, stories about dungeon management became as common as the stories about adventurers clearing dungeons. Personally speaking, I think it started from the fourth volume of the classic dungeon exploration RPG masterpiece.
"Master! Master, Master!!"
The white haired little girl repeated the same word while hugging me.
I asked Arisa for help, but she's only scratching her cheek, not looking like she'll take any action.
"Master is my Master so I declare."
"Mwu, too close."
Nana hugs me from behind, Mia tries to separate the white-haired little girl away from me.
Due to the physical correction from her level, Mia easily pulled the little girl away.
"Aa, Master! Let me go, Masteeeeeeeer!"
The little girl who got separated panicked and struggled to desperately come back to me while crying.
Seeing that, Nana muttered "young organism" and stopped moving.
"Bullying is uncool~?"
"You shouldn't make a little girl cry nanodesu."
Mia loosened her grips from Tama's and Pochi's cover fire, using that chance the white-haired little girl jumped out and clung back to my waist.
As Lulu enters bringing some tea, I sit down on the sofa and put the little girl on my lap.
Tama is looking enviously, but it doesn't seem like she'll push her aside.
"Now then, so what's with this girl?"
According to AR reading, her name is [Core Two], her race is [Homonculus].
Since her affiliation is the Dejima Island's [Phantasmal Labyrinth], she's probably the external probe unit of the Dungeon Core.
"When Pochi was traveling to better herself in combat with Tama, she was in nude and chased by bad people nodesu."
Tama and Pochi puffed their chests with eyes full expectation, so I patted and praised them, "You two did great."
Pochi's explanation was a bit too short, but she probably meant that they found Core Two running away from bad people when they were training.
"How did you girls know that she was my acquaintance?"
"Looking for Master~?"
"She said Master, so it's Master nanodesu."
I see, that's really like Tama and Pochi.
"Master, let's go home. It's dangerous outside the dungeon you know?"
Core Two turned her head upward while clinging to my chest.
Nana twitched whenever Core Two called me Master, but it seemed she was controlling herself, recalling the time when Core Two was crying.
"There's not many place safer than here you see."
The only place safer than here is probably only Yuika's base with her barrier.
Core Two shook her head. I'm not sure if she doesn't believe me, or if she can't accept it.
"Well, the labyrinth will be conquered sooner or later after all~"
Core Two reflexively objected Arisa's carefree words.
"If I'm with Master it's going to be absolutely absolutely invincible!"
"W-well, if Master is there even a straw house would be invincible."
"If you're with Master, everywhere is wonderfully peerless nanodesu."
At Core Two's rebuttal, Arisa assented with a stunned expression, Tama anad Pochi also agreed.
Core Two inclined her head in confusion at their reactions and looked up at me.
"Would you like some snacks?"
After confirming that we had calmed down, Lulu came in with snacks.
"You put biscuit on the sooft chocolate and eat it nodesuyo."
Tama and Pochi explained the snacks today to the Core Two.
"Young organism, you do it like this so I teach."
Nana demonstrated it to the Core Two who didn't understand.
"Tasty. Master, it's tasty."
"Thank you, don't mind me, you can eat more."
Core Two's eyes sparkled on her first bite, she turned back and offered the chocolate biscuit to me.
I bit it once and prompted her to eat the rest.
When Arisa mimicked Core Two and offered her chocolate biscuit to me, the other girls also mimicked her and offered theirs.
I'm not too fond of sweet things, but it tastes curiously tasty today, maybe because I was investigating things for a whole day and all night.
When I pretended to eat Lulu's finger along with her chocolate biscuit, she got surprised with reddened face.
The effect of staying up all night might have just seeped in.
"--So, did your talk with the emperor go well?"
Arisa asked while licking the chocolate on her fingers.
"Hey, the other girls will imitate you."
While whacking Arisa's head, I get Arisa, Hikaru and the others to go to the other room to talk about my talk with the emperor.
I asked the other girls to take care of Core Two.
"Master, please don't leave me."
When I put her down from my lap, Core Two separated her hands from the chocolate biscuit and clung to me.
"I'm just going to finish my business for a bit. Once I'm done, let's go to the 『Phantasmal Labyrinth』. Until then, wait here and enjoy the snacks okay."
"U-un. I'll wait."
Core Two nodded with an anxious look.
I waved my before going out of the room to ease her anxiety even a bit.
Sera who heard my story gave her impression about the weasel emperor with an indignant expression.
The ones here are Hikaru, Princess Shistina, Sera, Arisa, and me.
It seems Lady Karina is training in the desert training site with virtual golems.
I've informed Zena-san and Liza who got left behind in the Weasel Empire that I'll come back once I'm done here.
"Really? I think it's normal for a king to make his nation prosperous though?"
"B-but. For Ancestor King-sama to say such thing."
The princess put her hands on her mouth, shocked at Hikaru's statement.
"The eastern end of the continent where the weasels live is a poor land, I don't think they would have survived if they hadn't done that you know?"
"Well~ they do say that 『poverty dulls the wit』, so I also agree on that part--"
"Wait, of course I do think violating the taboo is a problem okay?"
While listening to Hikaru and Arisa's conversation, I calm down Sera who seems like she can't vent out her anger.
There's no need to use mind magic. I just pat Sera's shoulder who's sitting beside me, Sera who noticed her lost of composure takes a deep breath and leans her head on my shoulder, calming down.
"And, what are you going to do Master?"
"I want to collect a bit more information from the 『Room of Truth』, after that I'll pull back."
If the emperor understands that violating the taboo might mean fighting the gods, then I don't need to be noisy from outside. I don't intend to intervene on their domestic affairs.
I'm going to send some kind of surveillance though as I'd hate it if they launch the nuclear weapon here.
"You won't prevent it?"
"Yeah, even if I announce the thing about taboo to the people there, I'd only be treated like an insane madman."
In fact, I saw such activities in the Imperial Capital.
Moreover, the people of Brains and the important people of the empire are participating in it despite knowing the danger of the taboo.
"Does that mean forsaking the citizens?"
"Satou-san won't ever do such a thing. If the God's divine punishment is about to ruin the people there, he will surely cause a miracle."
The one who reacted to the princess was Sera who clung to my arm.
Arisa and Hikaru are flapping their mouths, having the position of defending me stolen from them.
As a matter of fact, there's an underground shelter under the Weasel Empire's imperial capital similar to the one in Shiga Kingdom's Royal and Duchy Capital, so they probably won't all die out even if the God's divine punishment happen.
If it looks dangerous, I'm thinking of evacuating the citizens to the sub-space with [Another World] magic.
Doing that should count as lifesaving, not intervention, so there's no problem.
"It'll be forestalled though."
"Isn't it fine? In this world there's a lot of people who don't understand what's important until the damage happens."
"Un, building Shiga Kingdom was also tough.... For Sharlick-kun and the others."
Arisa and Hikaru approved at my self-ridicule.
Even if I act preemptively, they'll most likely resent me saying, "You've gone and done unnecessary things" instead of being thankful as the result after all.
"Hee, so this is the 『《Dungeon Master Room》』."
"First time I'm in one."
Arisa and Hikaru are looking around the room curiously.
"What is this~?"
"It's glittering nodesu!"
"A, aaa-! You can't touch that!"
The other girls are also loitering around here and there.
Pochi and Nana seem to be the type who, 'for now let's push', when they found a button, Core Two stop them whenever they're about to push something.
『Master, please don't let outsiders inside the <<Dungeon Master Room>>.』
"They're all my relatives."
『--There is no problem if they're your relatives.』
My random excuse was accepted.
Looks like Dungeon Cores are unexpectedly flexible.
"Huh? The main core calls Master by 'Goshujinsama'?"
『As a result of the analysis of the information from Core Two, that way of calling seemed to be of the majority, so it's been changed.』
Dungeon Core cordially replied Arisa's question.
While still being expressionless, Nana nodded, looking somehow satisfied.
『Master, please confirm the present situation of the labyrinth.』
A graph showing the total sum of the Dungeon Point appeared in front of me.
"Uwa~, you really use Dungeon Point (DP) to manage a labyrinth."
"So torture room and prison exist?"
Arisa and Hikaru peeked from my sides and muttered.
『Master, is this arrangement weird? Would you like to return it to the state before the previous master's customization?』
The Dungeon Core seemed to have a doubt seeing their reactions, it timidly asked me.
Apparently, the current setting was set by the weasel demon lord.
"Can you show me that temporarily?"
Three gauges are displayed; the amount of magic power, the amount of miasma and the amount of souls.
These are the general numerics needed for the dungeon, and the dungeon point is a notation for them.
"Show both of them side by side."
After saying that, Dungeon Core changed the display.
Quite a convenient interface. The part where I don't have to rewrite the code myself is wonderful.
"Oh my--Master updated the interface."
Soft feel of something voluminous stuck on my back.
It appears she's Core Two who has become adult sized.
"Geh, loli girl became a kyonyuu." <TLN: huge breasts.>
Arisa was only surprised but Mia quickly pulled away the adult Core Two.
I'd prefer if she was a bit slower.
"Hey look, Satou! This is amazing!"
"It really is."
Hikaru and the princess beckoned me while staring at a three-dimensional display.
I looked at them out of interest and saw endless stream of Chant Orb names in a column, numerical values were displayed on the right.
"Don't tell me--"
As I stared up at the 3D display, Core Two nodded.
"It's the list of item for the treasure chests with the needed dungeon point."
Come to think of it, my [Chant Orb] was found in a labyrinth.
That means I could have gotten the [Chant Orb] if I just controlled Seryuu City Dungeon Core huh.... It's just a postscript now though.
"--This is nice."
I can't make too many of them since it needs a lot of DP, but this looks usable to power up the girls and the executives of Echigoya Firm.
『Master, is it to your liking?』
"Yeah, I'll frequently come here a bit more."
Looking at the gauges earlier, I can supply the magic power and the miasma as much as needed, but I can't do anything about the soul gauge.
There's no way I'm sacrificing the adventurers who enter the dungeon just to power up my companions.
At most, I can only change a boss room into a training room for the girls and bring monsters from outside there.
There's no skill that we urgently need right now anyway, I'll just take this slowly.
"Now then, it's about time we get back."
"Master, are you going somewhere?"
『Master, the place for Dungeon Master is here.』
When I said that, Core Two became teary eyed.
The Dungeon Core also asked me with tearful voice just like Core Two.
This looks as if I've done something bad.
"Then, you can just make a permanent gate to the solitary island palace here right?"
"Yup, then Core Two-chan can go back and forth and she won't get lonely will she?"
Hearing Arisa and Hikaru, Core Two looked up at the Dungeon Core.
『I understand. I will adopt that compromise.』
We've reached an agreement somehow so I make a gate that connects to the solitary island palace.
Core Two came with us as if it was natural, I'd need to prepare a bedroom for this child.
I don't mind her sleeping together with me if she were in her little girl figure, but I can't do that with her current kyonyuu body.
A brownie appeared from inside the mansion in a hurry.
"Satou-sama, you have a call from Echigoya Firm."
Huh? I should've already told them that I was going to Weasel Empire, did something happen in Echigoya Firm to expressly call me?
I entered the gate to Echigoya Firm alone after telling the girls that I was going to the Royal Capital for a bit.