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Okami wa Nemuranai 30.1

 
1





The Mediation Office is located inside General Information Desk building. General Information Desk is the building right in front of the dungeon.

This building consists of four buildings conjoined together.

The innermost building is the main office of General Dungeon Administration. It's a department that governs over all institutions here, holding enormous authority.

It's a massive stone building, and while the two front buildings are only one-story, it's got two or three floors as a whole. The General Dungeon Administration office is in the center back, an intimidating three story tall building with its second and third floor having a clear view on the dungeon's entrance as well as the row of buildings surrounding it.

Among the three front buildings, the center one is the Information Desk. It's where you get permits to enter the dungeon, purchase floor maps, send letters and items, store baggage, buy and sell information relevant to adventurers, and even look for an inn that suits your budget. Put simply, this is the place to go if you need to ask anything at all, so they were told in the first day.

The building to the left is the Dungeon Management Office. A department in charge of managing and maintaining order inside the dungeon, arbitrating fights between adventurers and sometime convicting them, the department also posts item or magic stone search quests. They sometimes even put up quests to maintain public order. This is also the place to deliver articles of the deceased you find in the dungeon yet don't want to claim.

And the building to the right is the Mediation Office. We're they're heading to.

They went in the center entrance and got greeted by a row of receptionist counters.

Due to the fact that it's early in the morning, there are uninterrupted lines of adventurers in front of every counter.

<Rats (Chirlan)> with watchful eyes are crowding around those lines. The age range of these rats start from 15 to 50s.

One of the officials behind a counter raised his hand and shouted out loud.

"Looking for a guide! Floor 15 to 18!"

Around ten <Rats> raised their hands at once.

The official stared at all those <Rats> and called out a name.

"Kogusun!"

The picked man went to the counter and greeted the official and the adventurers. His income would not be much considering it's shallow floors, but no matter so long as he can get a job. How much more he can get depends on the man himself.

Behind the numerous counters are many desks with officials working on it. Shelves with piled up boxes are placed here and there around them with a huge amount of documents inside.

And further beyond them, on top of a three step stairway, there's a huge luxurious desk, with a young woman wearing an outfit that just screams obvious authority sitting on it. You can overlook the entirety of Dungeon Management Office and the Mediation Office from there. A knight is standing by diagonally behind the woman. Behind them is a shut door that leads to the General Dungeon Administration.

The building may look like it's situated behind the dungeon, but this is the terminus of the huge road leading from this city's main gate, the west gate, so from the main gate's point of view, General Dungeon Administration building looks like it's got this aura of overwhelming dignity. And only nobles are allowed to make use of General Dungeon Administration.

Lecan and Arios walked to the right while taking a sidelong glance at the receptionists.

They passed through a row of stone pillars, and a gigantic arch located between Information Desk building and the Mediation Office's entrance.

They arrived at the Mediation Office.

Many adventurers hang around here. Most of which are solo adventurers. You can recruit people quickly here. However, solo adventurers tend to be a hit or miss. If you're looking for people you can trust, you want a party with good track records. Parties who apply for mediations put their request here and then either go back to their lodgings or go finish other businesses. Sometimes it could take several days to find a party that meets your criteria.

Lecan saw an open counter far in the back, so he headed there.
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
He sat on a chair in front of the counter and spoke.

"We're looking for additional party members. Don't care if they're solo or a party, just need someone who can dive in right away."

"This counter is reserved for the depths just so you know. So, which floor?"

"Starts from floor 82's giant variant room."

"Hou."

The male clerk raised his face to see Lecan. It's an elderly thin sinewy man. Due to Lecan's tall stature, he had to look up.

"State your party name, number, and composition."

"Party name's <Willard>. There's two of us. What do you mean by composition?"

"Your class, weapons and skills."

"Both swordsmen. I can use <Recovery>."

"Hou, that's a rare one. I have eight profitable jobs I can offer to a <Recovery> user who can get to floor 80s."

"I'm not looking to get hired. I'm hiring."

"Hiring? Hired arms, not cooperative diving then?"

"What's the difference?"

"All members in a cooperative diving are treated equally. You discuss between yourselves to decide where to go, when to fall back, how to split the loot. We won't interfere with that stuff. Since you guys're a two-person party, you're gonna have to apply for a five to ten-person party request. Probably won't have any say though."

"And hired arms?"

"You gotta pay for hired arms daily. Don't matter you earned much or nothing. We set the daily fee. You're gonna have to discuss among yourselves for the loot split, and to report to us about loot, but naturally the hiring side holds the initiative."

"Hired arms it is."

"Got you. Tell me the party name you guys been working together with."

"We haven't worked with anyone in this dungeon yet."

"Tell me names of adventurers you've worked together with, just names you can remember's fine."

"I'm telling you we haven't worked with anyone in this dungeon."

The official man put down his pen and looked up, staring at Lecan.

"Are you saying you've delved in floor 82 with just two people?"

"Yeah."

The man looked enraged.

"Get out!"

"What?"

The official stood up and yelled out while pointing at the exit.

"This ain't no place for your kind! Get the hell out!"

(Ah, I see.)

(This man thinks I'm lying.)

(Even though dungeons like this one should've no shortage of capable adventurers.)

(Two of those guys would have no problem conquering floor 82s.)

Lecan wondered if there's a way to prove just the two of them have gone on floor 82 here, but he concluded that would be difficult. They can have their Grace Gear drops appraised and proved that those are floor 80s goods. But there's no way to prove that they've gotten them on their own. Let alone proving that it was done by just the two of them.

Lecan quietly stood up.

"Sorry for bothering you."

He turned around and walked off toward the exit.

The official who drove Lecan away went to speak to a knight before walking with that knight toward the woman sitting in the luxurious chair in the back. <3D Perceptions> saw that much.

(The past me.)

(Would have totally blown my lid here.)

(Wonder if I've gotten any closer to this Strong Sword Shira told me.)

 

 

 

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Okami wa Nemuranai 29.16

 16





They reached floor 66 that day. No other weapon besides <Curse Mark Sword> was dropped.

The day after, 16th of Month 1, they reached floor 71.

They got in three other rooms besides boss rooms.

At the end of the day, they had entered eight rooms, defeated 57 White Spectres and got 12 treasure chests.

There were four Grace Gear, <Curse Dark Sword (Zomedscylla)>, <Seclusion Sword (Kanscurrscylla)>, <Cross Pierce Spear (Niarwid)>, <Crushing Hammer (Gwadburg)>, and one Graceless long sword. From a brief test swing, the Graceless long sword seemed to have the best balance among them. Though it's still not quite up there quality wise.

<Curse Dark Sword> has the effect of blinding those it cuts.

<Seclusion Sword> makes its bearer's shape and presence become harder to detect.

<Cross Pierce Spear> reduces the effect of defensive Grace when it's used to stab them. It's not particularly effective on equipped Grace Gear.

<Crushing Hammer> is a grace that adds an explosion on every strike. It's pretty powerful offensively speaking, but the hammer itself is awfully heavy, there's probably not many who can wield it.

They've gotten quite a lot of Grace Gear so far, but Lecan personally has no desire to wield most of them. Nevertheless he'd still like to find out these weapon's traits in preparation for battles with opponents who may wield them. Hence he has no plan of selling them for the time being.

Arios has given his consent too.

Both Lecan and Arios have earned a lot at Dungeon Ninae.

He doesn't know the exact amount, but Lecan should have around ten pieces of Platinum Coins. Not to mention many items that would sell for quite a lot of money in his possession.

Hence there's no rush to sell all these dropped items. Same with Arios. But they plan to at least assess what they can get from all those items at the trading facility in order to settle the split later.

By the way, he hasn't seen any more success at <Appraisal> on gear held by magic beasts now. The one time it worked was because that magic beast was not moving. Thus it can be concluded that <Appraisal> won't work any more from here on.

As they got back to the inn after the expedition, they were dead tired.

"Arios. Tomorrow is a rest day."

"Thank you."

They have had a smooth sailing thus far, but the battle has also been growing fiercer as they further go down. Lecan believes that things won't go as they were from here on.

The following day, Lecan spent all of it sleeping.

Then on the 19th they progressed to floor 74, and 77 the day after.

They got eight treasure chests during these two days, with three Grace Gear among those.

<Super Strength Sword (Ganzonscylla)>, has <Strength Boost> Grace that raises offensive power as well as strengthens all the muscles used to swing a sword. Having this in a blade lock should afford one to blow away foes bigger than them.

Lecan got carried away and cut a White Spectre in half when it broke.

Those with a great natural strength like Lecan will see an intense recoil when they use this <Super Strength Sword> to cut down a <Black Body>. The sword couldn't withstand the sheer magnitude of that recoil.

On top of that, the load his muscles and joints suffered was very huge. Lecan is fine since he's got <Recovery>, but ordinary men would have to take a few days rest were they fought wielding this sword.

Another problem is the fact that the sword is too light. No, the sword itself is heavy in reality, but it feels very light to swing, which is toiling to the body.

(Yeah this sword gonna go straight to bargain bin if we got another.)

<Recovery Sword (Crimscylla)> was a surprising one. Getting cut by this sword doesn't wound you, it heals your wound instead.

"Why'd dungeon magic beasts carry around an item that heals their opponents?"

"That's not it. The healing effect cannot catch up if it slashes deep into your body, eventually killing them. But if you use it to lightly scratch yourself, it will heal your wounds and fatigue. It should be able to heal serious injury if you make a lot of small scratches. This sword will surely sells for a lot of money."

<Chill Sword (Raktorscylla)> is furnished with a Grace that freeze their victim, but trying it out on White Spectres, it only froze the area around where it cut, not the whole body. Lecan doesn't get what's this Grace even for, but it might prove highly effective against fire elemental magic beasts if this world even has one.

They got to floor 80 on the 20th. Meaning they've conquered 79 floors. Since the magic beasts had gotten much tougher as of late, they figured floor 80's ones would be quite a challenge and decided to rest up first before going up against them. They obtained no Grace Gear that day.

They slept in the dungeon.

It was the 21st when they woke up.
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
They had a relaxing meal and went to floor 80's boss room.

There should be nine of these magic beasts now.

Lecan fixed his breathing in front of the room and kneaded his mana.

Then he opened his right eye wide before immediately charging into the room and unleashing his magic at full power.

"<Lightning>!"

Lightning flooded everywhere, wrapping all nine magic beasts. Five <Black Body> stopped moving for a moment. However, the four <Red Body> were completely unperturbed, one of them immediately growled. Lecan quickly moved toward a space in the right interior. Arios had charged in the room as well, but the magic beasts' attentions were focused on Lecan. That full powered <Lightning> wasn't wasted in the end.

Lecan made a sudden turn.

A spear of light shot out by a <Red Body> exploded on the back of a <Black Body> standing before Lecan. However the <Black Body> raised its sword overhead without even flinching and then swung it down. Lecan dodged the attack and struck at the <Black Body>'s sword-holding wrist with his <Sword of Rusk>.

It won't cut.

Lecan was a bit shocked at this.

If that hit didn't work, that means this floor's <Black Body> possess an awfully high defensive power.

Lecan swung his sword horizontally in an effort to cut its head. However, the <Black Body> got a pointy armored rind covering the area around its neck, which repelled Lecan's sword back.

Two different <Black Body> came charging in next to the current <Black Body>'s flanks.

Lecan pulled his sword back and stabbed at the center <Black Body>. <Puncture> skill automatically activated. The two <Black Body> in the flanks hit at Lecan's sword, but the attack went through regardless. <Sword of Rusk> pierced through the <Black Body>'s throat, coming out of the back. Lecan quickly pulled his sword to the side. The <Black Body>'s head got torn and flew upward.

"<Flame Spear (Bandroux)>!"

He blew away the left <Black Body> with a <Flame Spear> unleashed from his left hand, and swung down his <Sword of Rusk> at the right <Black Body>'s crown of head. The right <Black Body> struck at Lecan's left shoulder, but Lecan paid it no heed and kept swinging <Sword of Rusk> down fiercely. The <Black Body> got its head burst open and stopped moving.

<Necklace of Intuador> reacted and blocked a magic attack. Lecan ignored the caster and went at the <Black Body> that had gotten up and charged at him.

It's fast.

Both its mobility and downward swing are like that of a top swordsman. Swung from high above, the sword's got enough momentum behind it.

Lecan timed his strike to parry away the sword's diagonally, and penetrated through his opponent's throat with a thrust.

Another <Black Body> jumped at him from behind. This one crashed with the <Black Body> that got blown away earlier, but it seems to have regained its balance.

Lecan calmly let out a thrust and cut off its head.

At that point, the fifth <Black Body> that had been paralyzed by the initial <Lightning> attempted to get up. Arios swung his sword, beheading the magic beast.

The battle ended. A battle far more intense than anything they have experienced so far.

"We luckily got one of the <Black Body> paralyzed by <Lightning> this time around, could have been a struggle otherwise."

"It appears to me <Lightning> can only stop them momentarily now that we have gotten to this floor. Although that brief moment is decisive enough."

"Couldn't even flinch those <Red Body> though."

The tactic that carried them all the way here is gradually getting ineffectual.

Still, Arios's sword techniques are for sure incredible. He lured three <Red Body> and skilfully moved into their blind spots before disposing them all, Lecan saw it all in his <3D Perceptions>. And his sword skills that severed the black body's head while completely ignoring the neck guard-like needles were terrific. His sword seemingly being quite an article also helped.

Frankly speaking, the <Black Body> around these floors are a bit too much for Lecan's swordsmanship and <Sword of Rusk> to handle.

But it's still too early to take out the <Guardian Jewel of Zana>. Floor 100 and beyond would be a pipe dream if he had to resort to the jewel on this floor. Lecan decided to rely on <Puncture> while also using this opportunity to hone the skill. But it's clear now that they can't afford to play around in combat any longer.

Perhaps it's time to find more party members.

These new members simply need to keep these White Spectres at bay for a bit.

They don't have to beat them. All they have to do is help create a situation where Lecan and Arios can have a one-on-one with those beasts, or at least a one-on-two.

Lecan began flirting with the idea of visiting the Mediation Office.

They finished their expedition on floor 82 that day and went back to the inn.

Tomorrow is a rest day.

Besides eating, Lecan spent his whole time sleeping.

(We're gonna hit a roadblock soon at this rate.)

(Nothing we can't beat with enough time for now though.)

The problem is Grace Gear.

This dungeon spawns magic beasts that carry Grace Gear.

With no way of knowing when and in which rooms will they show up.

Fortunately, Arios is capable of correctly guessing which beasts bear Grace Gear.

However, he's clueless as to what kind of Grace those are.

Lecan managed to use <Appraisal> on a magic beast in floor 62's boss room, but that was only because the opponent happened to be unmoving then, he could never replicate that thereafter. Moreover, the time it takes to cast <Appraisal> could have been used to cast <Flame Spear> instead, failing that means wasting precious time.

Fighting against Grace Gear bearers is tricky.

Parrying or blocking their attack with your weapon can be dangerous, even blocking with a shield is risky.

They might shoot out ranged attacks.

Even just one magic beast with that kind of Grace Gear being around will make the fight harder by an order of magnitude.

On top of that, there can be more than one Grace Gear-bearing magic beast in a room.

It's nothing to worry about in a one-on-one fight. He could just dodge their attacks before cutting them down.

But nine on two is tough, very much so.

And if there's ten of them, perfectly dodging everything will be infeasible.

Starting from floor 80, the <Black Body> move far swifter than before. Lecan can no longer lops their head off in one hit due to that fact. Not to mention their sturdier armor.

As for the <Red Body>, as long as one of them manages to let out a growl, the rest can shoot out magic in rapid succession.

Lecan carries <Necklace of Intuador> to block those attacks, but Arios has to rely on dodging everything. Yet that won't be easy in a confused melee. He's been managing to stave it off with his light armor for now.

A well-kneaded <Flame Spear> can kill a <Black Body>. But Lecan has found himself unable to find time to shoot out <Flame Spears> on later floors. Even though his casting time has been hugely shortened, kneading a <Flame Spear> still requires a slight delay. And the White Spectres around these floors won't afford him that time. He could have taken some distance if the rooms were a bit bigger, but not when it's that cramped, they're too closely packed with the enemy.

He could also knead a <Flame Spear> before entering a room. However, the first strike is reserved for <Lightning>, to buy them a short period of time. <Fire Arrows> can be shoot faster, but it barely deals any damage to those spectres.

Floor 100s would prove difficult with just the two of them. That's for certain.

(Fumu.)

(Guess I'll go take a peek at Mediation Office.)




[Episode 29 Challenging Dungeon Tsubolt] End/Next [Episode 30 Cooperative Diving]

 

 

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Okami wa Nemuranai 29.15

 15





All four of the treasure chests that got dropped contained Large Red Potions curiously enough, all of which were given to Arios.

They got down to floor 63.

Lecan charged into some nearby room and tried <Curse Mark Sword> in it.

The sword is effective on both <Red Body> and <Black Body>.

An ancient script-like object that emits light would surface up on the wounded parts. Then after some time, the victim died.

"Confirmed the effect and all. But this thing's ill suited for dungeon combat with how long it takes."

"It appears to me the <Red Body> died faster. The <Black Body> moved around like usual though."

"Humans might have their strength gradually get sapped out. Hmm. Would be great if a test subject conveniently shows up here."

"Are you aware just how sinister you sound right now?"

"Guess I'll take on some bandit sweeping job in another town or something."

"Ah, you mean that way."

"Or if someone would try raiding us here in this dungeon, even better."

"Let's not joke about that stuff, okay?"

"Besides, against magic beasts, can't test if it's got any effect when it grazes armor or clothes. Ah."

"What's the matter?"

"We're heading to another room."

"Ok?"

They rushed in the next room. Then they defeated three <Red Body>, two <Black Body> and cut at the remaining two <Black Body> with the <Curse Mark Sword>.

The Curse Marks lit up.

Lecan kept dodging the enemies' attacks for a while before cutting one of them with the <Dagger of Harut>. The curse mark disappeared from the cut up magic beast. Lecan cut that same magic beast with the <Curse Mark Sword> once again and then cut it again with <Dagger of Harut> after observing it for a while.

"Fumu. I see. Go ahead and beat them."

"Got it."

After the two magic beasts were defeated, Lecan handed over the <Curse Mark Sword> to Arios, took <Dagger of Harut> off his belt and put it on the ground, then he presented his left hand to Arios.

"Cut it."

Arios stared in amazement like he couldn't believe what he just heard, but then he sighed out in resignation and lightly cut at Lecan's left arm.

Bwosh, the curse mark surfaced up.

Lecan fell down to his knees. He can't muster up power into his abdomen. The malaise keeps getting worse.

(This is quite a powerful curse.)
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
(Human who suffers this.)

(Can only afford to exert a fraction of their strength.)

He picked up <Dagger of Harut> and lightly grazed his left arm with it, the curse mark disappeared.

He put the dagger on the floor once again.

"<Recovery>. Cut at this overcoat now."

"Yes yes."

"No effect huh. Next, cut this armor."

"Yes yes."

"Fumu. No effect either eh. I think that covers about everything for now. Just gotta check more things out once we're out of the dungeon later."

"I sure am getting hungry."

They've taken quite a long time. It's way past noon now.

The two had a meal in a vacant room nearby.

"Lecan-dono, where did you learn how to fight in dungeons?"

"Hm? In dungeons."

"Did someone teach you the know-how?"

"Got nobody like that. I was a starving orphaned kid who recklessly ran headlong in a dungeon in search for food, got lucky and survived, got some pocket change too. Then after a few more strokes of luck, I learned how to fight. Everything after that was taught by dungeons. Well, there were times I used longtime adventurers' fights as a reference. I knew nothing 'bout nothing after all."

"Lecan-dono is a prodigy."

"You're the prodigy."

"I managed to fight my way only after learning Forms. Lecan-dono's style is formless. There are times when Lecan-dono used the <Black Body> on the front lines as shields and times where you charge right at the <Red Body> in the back."

"Yea. It wasn't always like that early on, but around these floors, <Black Body> would always be leading while <Red Body> would always be in the back. They always form up like that."

"Lecan-dono's fighting styles are ever changing. Sometimes I would wonder why you did some things. But not long after you would make it obvious how optimal that course of action was. How do you figure out how to make the right move from the very start?"

"I just do, guess it's instincts."

"It's almost as if you can foresee what move the opponent is going to take next when you move like such and such."

"It's easier to predict how the enemies will move when there are multiple of them than when there's only one."

"I knew it."

"Besides, no matter how alike they are to humans, these White Spectres are ultimately magic beasts. Their thought process, or more like the impetuses for their actions are that of magic beasts."

"White Spectres act like magic beasts they are. I see."

"You sometimes acted like things didn't go as planned."

"Yes. I only realized after Lecan-dono pointed that out just now. I seem to have been relying too much on my preconceived notions on what human hostiles would do."

"Employ every usable techniques you got at your disposal. If you don't find it usable, come up with a way to make it."

"I see."

"Besides. The most frightening thing in dungeons are humans. That's what I believe."

"Are you referring to people like <Pointed Rocks (Jaira)> who raided us in Dungeon Ninae?"

"I am. But those guys are still the more decent ones. Among adventurers who have been delving in dungeon depths for an extended period of time, some have got the chain that binds them as human broken. Or more like, you can't fight enemies found in dungeon depths if you don't discard that sense of value."

"Do you mean to say that they have gone mad?"

"Take for instance, this person suddenly got the urge to test out how your sword feel in their hands, so they attack you in the back when you're not looking and snatch away your sword. Someone who never shows any sign of doing that, and has just been talking with you like normal a second ago, kills you with no ill will behind their action. Casually at that."

"That's really scary. By the way, Lecan-dono, you're also one of adventurers who delve in dungeon depths aren't you?"

"Do not believe in me."

"Eh"

"Likewise, I'm not entirely trusting of you."

Lecan said that despite having been saved by Arios when he passed out in the heat of combat just three days ago. Lecan is saying here that he cannot trust Arios unconditionally just because he's saved his life.

"I see."

"However, I will entrust my back to you if that's what needed to be done in a battle. You decide what you want to do yourself."

"I shall take it to heart, Master."

 

 

 

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Okami wa Nemuranai 29.12_13_14

12





Lecan got out of the stairway and recited a spell.

"<Graph Make (Coznitt)>!"

Floor 56's map surfaced up in his mind.

The boss rooms are occupied.

"Alright. Let's get in some room near here and give this <Thunder Sword> a go. I'm going in ahead. Gonna be swinging the <Thunder Sword> around, keep your distance."

"Understood."

Lecan got in a nearby room, and once he confirmed Arios was in as well, he swung the <Thunder Sword>.

The attack hit all six magic beasts. They're a size smaller than giant variants. The magic beasts that were about to rush at Lecan stopped at their tracks and backed off a bit.

But, that's it. A moment later, the three <Black Body> started charging forward.

Lecan swung <Thunder Sword> once again. It hit all six again. But it couldn't kill even one of them.

Afterward, it just turned into a scuffle. Lecan wielded the <Thunder Sword> the entire fight, but it was just utterly maddening since flashes of lights and lightning would fly off whenever he swung it. He even got hit a few times. Though they beat the <Red Body> before they could cast magic.

"Yeah it's busted. This <Thunder Sword>."

"I don't think so. It all depends on the opponents. As it does possess sufficient firepower in itself. A single swing should be capable of annihilating tens of Red Apes and Spider Monkeys outside. Not to mention your average bandits. And I'm certain it would have been quite effective on higher floors in this dungeon."

"I guess you're right. This things gives swordsmen ranged attack. Rookie swordsmen can take on swarms of magic beasts or bandit gangs if they got this."

"I'm sure it will fetch for a good price."

"You wanna?"

"I'm good."

The boss rooms are both still occupied.

They traversed to a spot near one of the two.

"Lecan-san. Will you reconsider running in dungeon passageways?"

"Why?"

"Everyone we passed by looked startled."

Lecan would always try to find a path without other party around using <Graph Make> but there are times when that just isn't feasible.

"What about it?"

"Won't it make them unnecessarily wary of us?"

"Fumu. Then I'm gonna slow down if someone is in the way."

"Slow down, you mean we're still running in the end?"

"Yeah. All right. Let's get in this room."

"That's not a boss room, is it?"

"Yea. Got a little experiment to test out."

Lecan tried using <Life Drain Sword> in that room. It was a good chance since he had been slightly injured. He cut off the heads of the magic beasts inside with <Life Drain Sword> then his wounds got healed, pain went away from the bruised parts too. It also felt like his fatigue was healed.

"Ah damn. Should have lightly wounded them instead of killing outright."

However White Spectres that aren't beheaded would keep coming at you no matter how badly they are hurt. These magic beasts are incapable of feeling pain or flinching. Just lightly wounding them is simply out of question in a fight.

They reached floor 61 at the end of the day.

There was no Grace Gear drop, but they got two spears and four swords. All of which are good gear.

(Weapons dropped around these floors are all mighty fine eh.)

(And in terms of performance and perfectness.)

(The Graceless weapons are better.)

The Graced ones likely fetch much higher prices.

But if someone asked Lecan which one would he use himself, he'd pick the Graceless weapons.

(Either way, can't believe how many kinds of swords and spears get dropped here.)

(Glad I came to this dungeon.)

At this point of time, the thought of how Eda is doing didn't cross Lecan's mind. Let alone about Boudo, he had completely forgotten him.



<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >

13





After their expedition, they got back to the <Rafin's Rock Terrace Inn>, back to a small and crowded dining hall. Though it's only got four tables to begin with.

Just as he was about to go back to his room and had meals later, a group of adventurers who booked long term rooms in the inn opened up seats for Lecan and Arios.

They were a pleasant group of people.

Three person party <Good for Nothing (Grindam)>.

Short spearsman, Tsuinga.

Twin axeman, Bruska.

And mage, Yoana.

Every one of them was born in this town.

And since the dine-in guests were also mostly townspeople who live nearby, <Grindam> readily chatted with them.





14





It's the 15th of Month 1. Lecan made Arios who insisted on having an off day resign to his fate and off they went in the dungeon.

They defeated the floor boss on floor 61, then as they got in the boss room on floor 62, Arios shouted out loud.

"The black one second from the left!"

At this moment, Lecan cast a spell almost reflexively. His instinct told him that <Appraisal> would work here since the target was not moving.

"<Appraisal>!"

"Eh?"

"<Curse Mark Sword>! Your life gradually depletes if it wounds you."

"Uwaaa. That sounds scary."

Arios nonchalantly reacted while rushing into melee. The <Curse Mark Sword>'s bearer naturally fell to Arios to deal with.

(Will he be all right?)

Lecan has been hit a few times by the White Spectres they encountered so far, but Arios has never let any attack hit him except during the one time Lecan got knocked out by the <Exploding Sword>. Although, even if this curse sword somehow grazed him, it shouldn't work on his armor anyway.

(Hold it.)

(Venom won't get through his armor.)

(But that might not apply to that sword's curse.)

(It's gonna be a hectic fight.)

(He'd be hard pressed to perfectly dodge every hit.)

Lecan's got Silver Ring on, as well as <Dagger of Harut>. Even if he gets hit by the <Curse Mark Sword>, it won't be fatal. But that's likely not the case with Arios. It could get dangerous if the <Curse Mark Sword> works just from grazing his mantle.

"Arios!"

"Anything I can help you? Currently got my hand's full if you haven't noticed."

"Will <Curse Mark Sword> affect you if it hits your coat or armor?"

"Eh? I'm unsure. But it might work."

Lecan decided on it immediately.

"Arios, we're swapping opponents!"

"Got it."

Lecan and Arios lured their opponents toward the center of the room before swapping positions.

Lecan is bad at not letting his opponent even as much as graze his equipment. That's Arios's forte. That said, even Arios has done away with trying to dodge every attack after coming this far. Especially against magic, he'd block it with the harder part of his armor instead.

They eventually defeated all seven magic beasts and got their hands on the <Curse Mark Sword>.

Lecan cast <Recovery> on Arios and himself.

 

 

 

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Okami wa Nemuranai 29.10_11

10





The following day, Lecan got up, took a small bag from <Storage>, and put the content in his palm.

<Rainbow Pebbles of Happiness (Willard)>.

They're pebbles Eda's father presented to her mother which then got passed along to Eda, an unusual set of rainbow colored pebbles in white, red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple colors.

They're not exactly valuable, but to Eda, these are truly important pebbles she believes to bring happiness to those who carry them, they're her parents' memento.

Eda handed these over to Lecan on their way back from Goncourt Mansion after he saved her there.

"Cause I think you're gonna need them."

So she said.

Lecan tried to give them back before he left Vouka, but Eda wouldn't accept them.

"You can keep it with you until we meet again, Lecan."

Hence why he's got them with him now.

"Aren't those Eda-san's <Willard>?"

"Yea."

Arios asked about the meaning of their party name <Willard> before they went in Dungeon Ninae, and Eda explained. As such, Arios knows about these pebbles.

"I'm really blessed."

His fortune feels very real to Lecan.

Living in Zaidmahl Household after falling in this world.

Meeting Chaney and Eda.

Meeting Shira.

Meeting Norma.

Meeting Arios.

Lecan conquered Dungeon Ninae. Even came with an extra serving of 10,000 Spotted Spiders. Resulting in a huge power boost for him.

However, he could overcome that battle only because Arios, Heles and Eda were there with him. Looking back, you could even say it was actually Lecan's side that was saved by Heles in their Dungeon Ninae's adventure, not the other way around.

And how he could leisurely stroll around Dungeon Tsubolt right now is all due to the strength he gained at Dungeon Ninae. It was also thanks to the Octocular Great Spider's light armor Lecan and Arios wore that they managed to get through <Exploding Sword>'s crisis.

"Yes. And so am I."

Arios's words had sincerity to them.

Lecan took <Necklace of Intuador> out of <Storage>, and put it around his neck before shoving it behind the light armor. Another thing he gained at Ninae. He believed he would need its assistance from this floor on.



<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >

11





The two took their time having a meal before entering floor 55's boss room.

"Lecan-dono. Allow me to enter the room first this time."

"Hou."

By going after Arios into the room, Lecan managed to calmly assess the magic beasts thanks to Arios attracting their attentions.

Three <Black Body> and three <Red Body>.

Magic beasts starting around these floors move too fast he couldn't afford to observe them calmly anymore, but Arios leading the way has made it easier for Lecan.

"Left end!"

Arios shouted out briefly.

The <Black Body> on the left end must be holding a Grace sword.

Lecan cut off the center <Black Body>'s head.

Arios reaped the right end <Red Body>'s head.

Lecan went around to the right side of the right <Black Body>. Effectively using the Grace Geared White Spectre as a shield.

Lecan lightly dodged the right <Black Body>'s diagonal down slash and sliced at the sword-side hand's wrist. However, that blackened arm was surprisingly sturdy, <Sword of Rusk> slid off the wrist as a sound of metal clashing echoed.

That was when a crackling sound and a light shone bright, lightning assaulted Lecan.

<Necklace of Intuador>'s grace got activated, an invisible wall stopped that lightning right before it hit Lecan, letting out a dazzling light.

Lecan swung his sword from left to right horizontally, cutting off the <Black Body> in front of him.

Then he went around before rushing toward the <Black Body> in the back, cutting its head off.

Arios has retreated diagonally behind Lecan.

Two <Red Bodies> stood around in the back, not attempting to chase after Arios.

"<Flame Spear (Bandroux)>!"

The <Flame Spear> landed on one of the <Red Bodies> and blew it away. However, that wasn't enough to kill it despite the damage it received. Starting around these floors, these <Red Bodies> get to be highly resistant to magic.

The other one started to howl.

BOOOOOOOOOOU.

A pale blue light dwelt in its open mouth before explosively flying off toward Lecan.

<Necklace of Intuador> stopped the attack. Lecan just watched the two magic beasts and their attacks without moving an inch.

The other <Red Body> got up and opened its mouth to shoot out a pale red spear of light, but it also got dispersed off by <Necklace of Intuador>.

The first <Red Body> shoots out pale blue spears.

The second <Red Body> shoots out light red spears.

After the eighth attack, Lecan suddenly rushed forward and lopped the left <Red Body>'s head off.

Arios took care of the right <Red Body> at the same time.

All hostiles have been eliminated.

A treasure chest popped up.

Lecan took out the sword inside and appraised it.





<Name: Thunder Sword (Gwintyrscylla)>

<Type: Sword>

<Grace: Thunder>

※ Send thunder and lightning forward when swung above a certain speed





"Hou."

Sounds like a really nice Grace. Seems pretty powerful too.

Lecan explained what the Grace is about to Arios.

"Oh that should let one goes up against multiple magic beasts. I think swinging it horizontally should widen up the scope too. But that dazzling light will surely get in the way."

"Right. Either way, time to take it for a spin."

Bwosh, Lecan swung the <Thunder Sword>.

Thunder and lightning flew off, gouging out the rock wall.

He swung it again, faster this time.

Thunder and lightning flew off, gouging out the rock wall.

"Its power remains the same regardless of how forceful or fast you swing it huh. But man, that stuff is really bright up close."

"Although it may serve as a blind to the enemy, it will also dazzle friendlies like that."

Forget friendlies, it's a hindrance to the user themselves.

Having that dazzling light shone right into your eyeballs will make you lose sight of what's in front for a moment. It's an ideal weapon for the eye-less White Spectres though.

"Let's just get to floor 56 for now... It's floor 56, right?"

"I believe so, yes. More importantly, what was that thing that blocked the magic attack earlier?"

"Hm? It's <Necklace of Intuador>'s work."

"You mean that necklace. You got that at Ninae, didn't you?"

"Yeah. You didn't know how this necklace work eh?"

"I have no idea."

"This thing automatically repels magic attacks. It's also usable as a Mana Cellar."

The two fetched magic stones and went into the floor below. Then Lecan got back into the stairway and recited a spell.

"<Floor (Sijmel)>!"

They really are on floor 56. No doubt.

 

 

 

 

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Okami wa Nemuranai 29.9

 9





Lecan went in floor 53's boss room, followed by Arios.

"Lecan-dono. That <Black Body> ahead bears a Grace Gear!"

(Hou.)

The said <Black Body> is holding a plain unassuming short sword.

(Let's see how a strike feels).

Lecan had barely clashed swords with the enemy they came across so far.

That's how he's always done it even against human. Clashing weapons would just nick his sword. He won't hesitate if the need truly calls for it, but even then he would adjust his timing and angle to minimize the blade chipping.

But this is a rare chance to have a taste of a grace gear's strength.

So Lecan thought as he attempted to parry the down swung sword sideway.

In that exact moment, there was an explosion.

Lecan reflexively shielded his eyes with his left arm, but his whole body took a huge blow, his face got injured.

Then he passed out on the spot.

"Lecan-dono. Please wake up."

Lecan opened his eyes as he lay in a passageway. No magic beast anywhere in sight.

He got up and spoke to Arios.

"Where are we?"

There's something inside his mouth. It's Stamina Restorative.

"We're somewhere close by the stairway to floor 54."

He's right. This place is right outside the boss room.

"Did you carry me out. My bad."

"Please don't mention it."

"Did you beat all the magic beasts?"

"Yes. It was pretty tough facing off against six on my lonesome, you know."

Arios had barely been ever got hit in this dungeon, his light armor made of Octocular Giant Spider's mats from Dungeon Ninae was pretty much brand new until earlier. Yet it's gotten damaged and dirtied all over now. Signifying just how intense the battle was.

Lecan could only count his luck having Arios as a companion.

Anyone else would never be able to beat six magic beasts while protecting Lecan. Or worse, they would leave Lecan behind which is understandable.

Nevertheless, he's quite something to beat those beasts while keeping Lecan safe.

(This guy is hiding his trump cards.)

(Though well that's no surprise.)

"Sorry. I'm in your debt. Did you get me take the Stamina Restorative too?"

"Yes. I sprinkled a Red Potion on Lecan-dono's face and also make you take the Stamina Restorative you gave me."

His face did get damaged when that sword exploded. Felt like his lips got shredded to pieces too. The guy administered red potion and restorative right away, nothing less to expect from Arios.

The Stamina Restorative is something Lecan made himself. He gave ten pills to Arios, telling him to use it when the needs arise.

Lecan touched along his face and found nothing wrong with it. <3D Perceptions> showed no oddity either. No pain either.

"Just what was that anyway?"

"Oh it's this thing."

Arios took a familiar short sword from his <Box>. The same sword the magic beast earlier carried.

"<Appraisal>. Fumu. It's called, <Exploding Sword (Gopsuscylla)>. Grace is <Explosion> Small. The sword produces a forward facing explosion when it receives an impact of certain intensity. Use rate is 100. It's got limited use huh, what a letdown."

It didn't feel magical when the sword exploded. Meaning Grace Sword's explosions are caused by some sort of non-magic means. This was not unusual even in his previous world. Though it's weird how the <Exploding Sword> itself is completely undamaged from the explosion.

"I have heard stories about this grace. But if small can produces that much explosion, medium and large must be tremendous."

"This Grace Gear doesn't sound really usable."

"Oh not at all. Please think about it. Even a small fry managed to deal such damage to Lecan-dono."

"Mwu."

He speaks the truth here. The user's skill doesn't matter to the scale of the explosion. If anyone can produce that much firepower just by equipping one, even a not-so-strong adventurer can defeat powerful magic beasts in one shot, and ten of this thing can form a group with a very high breakthrough potential.

"Let's do a little experiment. For now we go down. <Concealment><Concealment>."

The two ran down the stairs. There was no other adventurer along the way.

Once they were on floor 54, Lecan went in a nearby vacant room.

Then he struck the wall with the <Exploding Sword>. A loud booming sound echoed, the wall's splinters flew off everywhere. Some of which hit Lecan's face.

"Arios. Throw a pebble at me."

"Yes."

Lecan hit the thrown pebble with the <Exploding Sword> horizontally. An explosion occurred, the pebble got blown away while disintegrating.

"Do it again."

"Yes."

This time Lecan hit it with the side of the blade. The explosion faced not the pebble, but toward the edge of the blade out, to the ground.

"Arios. Try slashing at its back."

"Yes."

Lecan turned the <Exploding Sword>'s edge to the left. It's a double edged sword, but that edge is obviously the front considering its blade and handle's constructions. Lecan told Arios to slash at the blade's back, meaning the impact will hit the right side from Lecan's point of view.

Arios slashed at the sword as instructed, and the explosion didn't occur at the side where it was hit, but at the other side.

Next Lecan put the <Exploding Sword> on the ground and hit its side with <Sword of Rusk>. An explosion occurred and while the <Exploding Sword> got blown away to back, it didn't fly far.

This time he put the sword in its scabbard and hit the wall with it.

No explosion.

He hit even harder but still no explosion.

He drew the <Exploding Sword> out of its scabbard and weakly hit the wall.

No explosion.

He hit a bit harder.

Still no explosion.
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
He hit even harder.

It exploded.

He hit really really hard.

Explosion.

Thus how they tested out all kinds of things. By the end, Lecan even tried throwing it which caused an explosion and throwing it at Arios who flung it away.

The use rate eventually went over 100, stopping the sword from exploding any more.

"<Appraisal>. Hm. Its use rate got down to zero."

Afterward, Lecan put the <Exploding Sword> in its scabbard and left it on the ground.

"The explosion only manifests a certain distance away from the sword, or more like, right in front of it. The strength of explosion does not vary regardless of how strong or weak it's hit. It explodes regardless of whether someone holds it or not. It even explodes when you throw the sword. Weirdly enough, the explosion does not push the sword back. Which indicates all the force generated by the explosion is concentrated forward. It doesn't explode in its scabbard. That's about all of it."

"Any countermeasures?"

"For the time being, avoid facing the sword's front when we're fighting White Spectres bearing unknown swords. Especially when you're clashing swords."

"That sounds like a really high hurdle to vault over."

"The explosion is only lethal around a step away at most. There is no danger when you're two steps away. Even at one step, you can still defend against it if you let your body armor take it. Only a tiny portion of the explosion possesses high firepower, so you should avoid fatal injury if you can dodge the core."

"Ah, I see. Then there's nothing to worry about. As expected of Lecan-dono."

It seems like he was knocked out for quite some time. Lecan's inner clock told him that it's evening already.

"No one's in the boss room right now. We're going."

"Yes."

As they walked, Lecan murmured.

"I'm really fortunate."

"Is it because I'm with you?"

"That too, but had I was up against more powerful foes in deeper floor, or had the <Explosion> not Small, I could have died. "

"I see. You've got a point."

They got to floor 55 that day. Besides potions, they also got a sword with <Sleep> and a dagger with <Weaken>. Both inflicts their respective effect when they're used to deal wounds. Testing them on White Spectres, it worked. However, <Sleep> only has 30% success rate and is also affected by the target's resistance. Useless. <Weaken> is a Grace that debilitate the target's speed and strength, and the effect seems to be guaranteed as far as their testing goes. It might come in handy against formidable foes.

They slept in the dungeon that day.

 

 

 

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Okami wa Nemuranai 29.8

 8





Once again, the two stairway rooms on the floor were occupied.

The closest room got eight people inside and five outside.

The farthest one got ten inside and none outside.

They decided to head for the farthest room.

But then, on their way there, Lecan sensed another party coming closer to that room, then one of that party's members got inside alone before immediately coming out. That party then stopped moving in front of the room.

(Must be waiting for their turn.)

Change of plan, Lecan and Arios went for the closest room instead.

As they arrived in front of the room, the five dots there turned out to be knights. All of them are standing upright, none is sitting.

The knights glanced at the approaching Lecan and Arios, an uncomfortable kind of glance.

As Lecan sat at a distance away from them, one of the knights called out to him.

"This room is currently in use by us, the Knights of Gido."

"Hm? You guys aren't waiting for your turn?"

"Watch your tongue."

"Lecan-dono. Let's just go."

That was when two knights rushed out of the room.

Then two other knights standing by near the entrance got in the room in their stead.

The two knights that just got out took up positions in the back of the line, and drank some small red potions.

A knight peeked out of the room.

"All hands, go forth in!"

All the five knights who were standing by outside went in the room in a hurry, but Lecan could tell with his <Life Detection> that the blue enemy dots inside the room had disappeared. Lecan stopped walking and decided to observe the situation.

Afterward, those knights made a weird movement.

11 out of 13 of them got in the stairway before immediately getting right back out into the room. Then all 13 of them went out of the room.

"Hm? You. You're still here?"

The knight who was telling them off earlier looked at Lecan and Arios like they were dirt.

Since Arios was tugging his sleeve, Lecan silently left walking toward the farther giant variant room.

"What was that all about?"

"Oh they're dungeon knights. Good for nothing bunch."

"Dungeon knights?"

That sounded familiar to Lecan and then it hit him. Norma explained to him about them once. Dungeon knights are knights serving regional lords who have obtained strength in dungeons.

"They don't look that strong though."

"Oh those bunch are not the kind people who would make an effort at bettering their swordsmanship."

Arios was being unusually harsh.

"Those bunch you see. They brute force their way to take on dungeons relying fully on good equipment and an abundance of consumables. After all you enjoy a boost on your physical strength by exploring dungeons with others, no need to actually attack correctly or even partake in combat."

"Ah, I see."

Even if they don't have the combat skill, having a huge number of knights with enormous life forces and extraordinary raw strength will be quite a force to be reckoned in a defensive battle. And they can polish on their combat skill later on since they're harder to die.

(Guess that works in a way.)

However, it seems Arios has antipathy against those who only participate in a dungeon exploration to gain power without honing their skills. Perhaps he's had experience fighting someone like that.

(There might have been a story behind.)
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
(Why this guy never went inside a dungeon before.)

(Fumu.)

(There's some diverging points from what Norma told me.)

(I guess it's understandable seeing Norma is ignorant of this topic.)

"Ah, I see now."

"What's the matter?"

"Those knights earlier got in the stairway leading down after beating the magic beasts. Yet they left two people in the room. And the guys who got in the stairway came back out instead of kept going down. After which they left the room."

"What's the significance of those actions?"

"If all of them got in the stairway, a new batch of magic beasts would pop back up. Six White Spectres at full health. They left two people behind to prevent that. You get the <Mark> from entering the stairway, so they must be making <Marks> for those who didn't have them."

The innkeeper of <Rafin's Rock Terrace> said that you get the <Mark> of a floor once you step on that floor. But Lecan got the floor 51's <Mark> when he tried stepping in the stairway on floor 50 leading to floor 51.

Lecan thought, 'Nice'. Because that should mean using <Warp> from this dungeon's ground floor should put them at the end of the stairway.

In short, if they just <Warp> back to ground floor first, then <Warp> to floor 51, they should arrive at the end of the stairway without traversing through the long way down on foot. Or so he believed.

Yet when he actually gave it a try, they got warped to the starting point of the stairway, not the end. Then he thought that they would probably get warped to the end point once they had actually set foot on the floor 51, and sure enough he was right.

In other word, Nark's explanation wasn't wrong, but it wasn't the whole picture either.

"That must be it. And they must not attempt to get down below, and instead take on the same room again. In order to strengthen themselves quick and easy."

"Monopolizing giant variant rooms huh. What a bother."

"Those knights might not even fight on their own, they could be making knights dispatched by the lord here or adventurers do all the heavy lifting."

"Damn that's crappy. Do they really go that far?"

"That's just how those dungeon knights are all like."

Quite a harsh assessment.

"Ah, hold on a bit."

"What's the matter?"

"Got something to test out. Wait here a bit."

Then Lecan rushed into a nearby room.

Six White Spectres inside.

"<Lightning>!"

Lecan paralyzed the incoming White Spectres, halting them.

Since the foremost spectre was a <Red Body>, he cut off its right arm. Then he left the room.

"Huh? Are you done with your testing already?"

"No. I'm going in again."

Lecan got in again.

"<Lightning>!"

The <Red Body> whose hand Lecan cut off earlier was still without right hand. This time he lopped that <Red Body>'s head off.

Then he left the room.

<Life Detection> displays five blue dots.

By activating <3D Perceptions>, he found out that the magic beast's body he killed earlier was still lying on the ground.

"Kept you waiting. Let's go."

"What did you do?"

"The magic beast I wounded was still wounded after I left the room once. And leaving the room after killing one out of six magic beasts did not put their number back to six."

"Ah, a verification work is it. Never swallow what other tell you whole huh. As expected of Lecan-dono. By the way, shouldn't it be about time for us to have a meal?"

"Yeah let's."

They got in a vacant room and had a meal there.

Whenever he's in a dungeon, Lecan would take his time consuming his food and restoring his physical condition.

The giant variant room emptied up in the meantime.

 

 

 

 

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