14-4. Yowok Kingdom
Satou's here. Exterminating pest in my grandfather's countryside was already hard enough, but in another world the pest can even rout an army, so normal people can't do anything about them. It's like challenging bears or dinosaurs with farming tools after all.
At first I was hesitating to choose which of the suspicions I would go first, but after contemplating the ease of movement, I decided on it.
In Kuro figure, I went to a branch office of Echigoya Firm at the handy relay point in Kuhanou Earldom.
This place is a temporary building and no one from the executives is here.
"Uwah.... Wait, that white hair, are you Kuro-sama?! Oh please don't surprise me like that."
"Don't mind it."
The branch manager girl who just came into the room where I moved into with Unit Arrangement got surprised.
She's a slave that the Manager bought, but the Manager highly valued her business and negotiation talent and entrusted her to be the branch manager.
It seems she's been promised to be freed of her slave status if she can make this branch office prosper.
There are some people who don't want to be freed like Tifaliza, but most of them want to be released by working, there's some wide difference in their desire.
"What business do you have today? Or maybe, have the report that I sent yesterday arrived already?"
"No, I haven't seen it, is it important?"
"No no, it's just that one of the liquor brewing winery is on the verge of collapse."
What, that kind of thing huh.... No, wait.
"Is that the content of the report?"
"Yes, it's of the liquor brand that the Manager regularly stocks, so I'd like to ask whether we should intervene or not."
"Is it the 『Blood of Lesseu』?"
"So Kuro-sama is aware of it.... What kind of secret that cheap wine--"
I lightly threatened the probing branch manager girl, "Curiosity killed the cat."
This [Blood of Lesseu] is a wine that the True Ancestor vampire Ban who lives in the lower layer of the labyrinth likes.
Investigating the demon lord is important, but I shouldn't neglect this either.
He's a friend after all, and I'm indebted to him for many things.
"So, is it collapsing because of financial reason?"
If that's the case then Echigoya Firm can just buy them.
"No, the villages where the wine is brewed seem to be in danger of annihilation because of monster outbreak. The territorial army of Earl Lesseu only exterminate monsters in the highways and the mines, so most rural areas far from the cities are doing terrible."
I checked the map while listening to the branch manager girl.
There's a few monsters along the roads and around the cities where the kingdom army was said to be sweeping, but the rural areas where monsters are wandering about have become danger zones.
The monsters are all level 20 small fries, but expecting the villagers to exterminate them is impossible.
"The village's name?"
"They're Hosbed village and Suibod village."
Checking on the map, ant-type monsters have made a nest on the mountain near Hosbed village, while caterpillar-type monsters seem to have spread around the vicinity of Suibod village.
"Then I'll go exterminate them."
After telling the branch manager girl, I moved to the mountain near Hosbed village with [Teleport] magic.
With this [Teleport] magic I can teleport to anywhere on the map that has been explored, it's extremely handy.
Of course, [Teleport Gate] is the same too, but that one uses too much magic power.
I think [Unit Arrangement] that can only be used in an area that I rule and places that I can see has its use case.
"Damn you ant bastards! Our vineyard that we've put so much!"
"Tagwosa! Stop! You'll only die in vain fighting them with a hoe!"
I could hear such conversations from the wind blowing from the village.
According to the radar, it seems that the vineyard located on the mountain foot is being attacked by ant monsters.
I take out level 30-class magic orbs from Storage and throw them on the ground.
--[Create Stone Wolf].
10 bear sized wolf stone statues are created from the center of the magic cores on the ground.
These stone wolves are a type of golem.
"Eliminate the monsters attacking the village."
After I gave them an order, the stone wolves ran at full speed toward the vineyard.
Eliminating the monsters with Remote Arrows would have better cost/performance ratio, but thinking about the future, I decided to use the stone wolves.
The battle had already ended when I arrived at mountain foot by walking leisurely.
The ant monsters were only around level 10, they were no match against the stone wolves.
The stone wolves, that have assembled silently, put the magic cores they've collected from the ants near my feet.
There are 30 of them in total.
Even though they were small fries, this is too many near a human habitat.
Wouldn't the village get destroyed if I wasn't here?
"A-are you the master of those stone wolves?"
"That's right. The name's Kuro."
I gave the stone wolves the order to raid the ant nest while replying the villagers.
I do it just by designating the place on the map, it's truly easy.
"Magician-sama, where have those stone wolves gone to?"
The village mayor who has good attires that appeared from behind the men asked me politely.
"I let the stone wolves to go destroy the ant nest. I can't hand over these magic cores, but I won't take the materials from those monster bodies, distribute them to the villagers to use."
I point at the ant bodies that the stone wolves have destroyed and leave them to the villagers.
Protective gears made from ant shells have good defense despite being as light as leather armor, so they should be able to sell it at a good price to the arm dealers since the neighboring territory is having a civil war.
I use the magic cores that I've just got for the [Create Stone Wolf] like earlier, creating 30 medium dog-sized stone wolves.
They're inferior compared to the stone wolves from earlier, but they should be stronger than your average soldiers.
It should be enough for the village defense.
I order the stone wolves to protect the vineyard, and to patrol the vicinity and destroy any monster.
Just in case, I grant the village mayor a restricted right to command them.
"I'm giving you these stone wolves to protect the vineyard. Make use of them to exterminate monsters."
"S-such expensive magic servants, is it?"
--Expensive? Considering the magic core price, all of them aren't even one gold coin worth you know?
"Don't mind it. My acquaintance habitually drinks the liquor made from this village's grapes. I did this for that person."
"I-it wasn't an order from Earl Lesseu?"
"I have nothing to do with Earl Lesseu, but he's not small-minded enough to complain about a village being saved from a threat."
No, that restless youngster might loath it if the populace show gratitude to someone besides him.
"However, if Earl Lesseu complains, tell him to direct that to the house of Duke Mitsukuni."
"D-duke house?! I-if I'm not mistaken, it's greater than Earl-sama?"
Ignoring the surprised village mayor, I carve the stone wolves with the crest of Duke Mitsukuni house using magic.
The crest of Duke Mitsukuni house is two intersecting tennis racket. Mito probably picked rackets from the [Teni x Hero] manga from where the name [Yamato] came from.
>Stone Wolf Leaders have accomplished the order. Shifting to stand-by mode.
Log listed that the stone wolves have completed their mission.
This is quite convenient.
"Well then, good bye."
I expressly used [Fly] magic by chanting, went to the ant nest through the sky where the stone wolves were waiting, and collected the bodies and the magic cores.
When I was entering the cave, I invoked [Astro Suit] magic that I once used in the void sky, avoiding the stench. <TLN: TL mistake on Ch. 13 Intermission 1, should've been "Astro Suit" there.>
This magic has very good usability.
Using the magic cores I got here, I saved the second village and got a lot more magic cores.
Of course I also left the deployed stone wolves to protect the second village like the first, so the vineyards should be peaceful from now on.
I slightly digressed, but since there's still some time before noon, I head toward Yowok Kingdom through the air lane.
I inadvertently got near the battlefield when I was passing through Bisthal Dukedom along the way and got chased by the Wyvern Riders.
I immediately lost them once I changed from [Fly] to Flash Drive, but I'll have to be careful in choosing my flight course next time.
Just in case, I searched Bisthal Dukedom, but there wasn't any demon nor Unique Skill user there.
There were unusually many Tamers and Beast Riders but, I couldn't find a particularly suspicious point, so it's probably a territory that offer those kinds of jobs.
There was a huge lake, five times the size of Lake Biwa near the duchy capital, I'd like to go visit there with everyone once the war is over.
And then, I finally arrived at the group of small kingdoms after crossing the border mountain range.
I made a slight error, as I didn't arrive at Yowok Kingdom but at a town of a mountain kingdom called Zareok Kingdom.
According to the Tourism Ministry's document, it seems to be an idyllic kingdom that specializes in wool products.
"Fumu, the specialty products here are the lamb steak and the sheep milk liquor huh...."
According to the prime minister's gourmet guidance, the lamb steak is superb, and once you get used to the quirky sheep milk liquor, you just can't stop.
I was slightly tempted to pick them up, but let's enjoy that for later.
For the re-visit purpose, I built a house in a desolate place deep in the mountain using [Create Safe House] magic.
It's an original magic created by remodeling the [Create House] magic from before.
The inside is a normal house, but it looks like a dilapidated house covered in ivy on the outside.
Moreover, it's hidden into the surrounding once you get slightly away from it, so unless you have something like my map, or are very lucky, finding this [Retreat] should be difficult.
Leaving behind the tempting memories of Zareok kingdom, I head toward the neighboring kingdom.
For some reason, there are areas that are ruled by monsters in the border or rather the gap between kingdoms.
Apparently, when a strong monster above certain level continues to rule the Source, the area becomes its dominion.
It's like a grand-strategy simulation game.
Passing through such monster domains, I enter the next kingdom.
According to the Tourism Ministry map, this is the Garuok Kingdom where a lot of woodworks and coals exist.
It seems that the furnitures made by master craftsmen of this kingdom are famous even in Shiga Kingdom and Saga Empire.
"Furnitures huh--Touring the workshops of European-style antique furnitures sounds fun."
According to the document, this Garuok Kingdom has symbiotic relationship with the neighboring Deerfolk kin and Squirrelfolk kin.
Deerfolk kin offer military force to Garuok Kingdom, and get food supply as the compensation.
Looking at the map, it seems there's a lot of Squirrelfolk kin working away from home as furniture craftsmen.
There are monster-ruled domains between Garuok Kingdom and my destination Yowok Kingdom too.
This one seems to be a wyvern domain.
The wyverns that circle the sky near the mountaintop found me and raised vigilant cries.
A wyvern as big as a lesser dragon takes along several wyverns with it to ride the updraft air current heading toward me.
Its full of impact looks like one scene in a movie.
"Wyverns are bad news aren't they..."
I quickly exterminate them with [Laser] magic while leaving only a pair of young wyverns.
The reason why I didn't eliminate them all is because the monster domains might be helping in restraining war.
I was interested with the white peak near the wyvern nest, so I went to see it while also collecting the bodies in the air.
"--All of these white things are dragon white stone huh."
Apparently, dragon white stones are something created from wyvern's dungs that have undergone change.
It's interesting that the material that comes from wyverns that carry deadly poison is also an ingredient of the all-purpose antidote.
I use earth magic to roughly cut the dragon white stone and collect them into Storage.
With this many, it could last 1000 years for the labyrinth city use.
After finally arriving at Yowok Kingdom, I use [All Map Exploration].
Since this Yowok Kingdom has absorbed Arisa's homeland, it's larger than small kingdoms I've been to so far, there are two cities and seven towns.
There's hardly any demi-human even as slaves, it seems to be a kingdom that's mainly of humans.
Just like the maps I've been through so far, let alone demon lord, there's not even any demon nor anyone with Unique Skill.
Of course, there's no one with possessed condition nor demon lord sympathizer either.
The eyewitness said that he saw the demon in the labyrinth after all, judging it as a false report is too early.
I built a [Retreat] in a mountain for emergency use.
I've already built some in the neighboring kingdoms and the wyvern domain, but just in case.
While under [Optical Camouflage] skill, I head toward the ruin of Kubooku Kingdom's royal castle where the Yowok Kingdom's labyrinth is.
"This is terrible...."
The main part of the royal castle has disappeared, and three towers next to the castle wall have collapsed.
The only tower remaining is destroyed on its base too and there's no one inside.
According to Arisa, it was a greater demon's attack, so the damage might be little considering.
Lesseu City was virtually destroyed by a mid demon after all.
Now then, there are a few presences of human in this ruined castle site.
According to the map info, those people have [Adventurer] occupation.
To be exact, they seem to be [Adventurers] that belong to [Yowok Kingdom Labyrinth Bureau Adventurer Guild].
It seems they're managing people who go in and out of the royal castle, or rather the labyrinth through the [Adventurer Guild] building located in one section of the castle site.
Observing them, I see that the staff members are checking the adventurer's badge in the labyrinth entrance.
I can enter the labyrinth if I just use [Optical Camouflage] and [Magic Essence Camouflage], but since it seems that the adventurer's badge is issued on the same day just like at the labyrinth city Selbira, I decide to go through the normal route.
I land in a shade near the ruined castle and release [Optical Camouflage] skill.
"Hey hey, onii-san over there, won't you play with Kuku?"
A little girl of middle school age tried to pick me up when I went out of the shade.
The power of foreigner celebrity's face is amazing. Handsome men go explode--it's at the level where you want to say that.
Just like what Arisa has said, the language of this kingdom feels like Shiga Kingdom's dialect.
"How about it? Just one small silver coin you see?"
Apparently, she's not picking me up, but selling herself.
I don't have this kingdom's currency, but Saga Empire's and Shiga Kingdom's one should be usable.
It's not like I can't pay, but the girl is a bit too young to sell herself.
"Sorry, but I have no interest in little girl."
When I was about to leave after telling her so, two bad-looking boys appeared from the opposite street.
"Ooh! Ya want to go for free after putting yer hands on our Kuku?"
"Hehhee, I'll let ya off with yer life if ya leave all yer money alright?"
They came out a bit too fast, but it seems these guys are playing the badger game.
"In other words, I can go if I beat you guys up?"
"Hmph! Ya think ya can win against this Jido Bado brothers--"
Since the two boys affirmed my question, I lightly kick them away.
They sunk into a deserted house's wall, but since the little girl called Kuku went to them, leaving them should be fine.
"Registration is it? Then please put your hand on this judgment board and say your name."
When I asked the beautiful Adventurer Guild receptionist, I was made to touch a Yamato Stone they call judgment board.
I thought of using Kuro's level, but it seemed like level 50 would make them be on guard, so I lowered the level to 20 before touching the Yamato Stone.
I'd look unnatural if I was empty handed like usual, so I'm currently equipped with an iron short sword on my waist.
"Is this alright?"
"My! Level 20, you're amazing! Moreover, not only you have one-hand sword skill, you also have also magic skill!"
The receptionist said that in a loud voice at the same time my levels and skills appeared on the Yamato Stone.
--What about your duty of confidentiality.
"Aah, I'm sorry! Oh me."
Judging from the receptionist who doesn't look like she's sorry, rather than being careless, it seems that she did it deliberately to inform the spies of Yowok Kingdom in this place.
Even after taking the adventurer badge and leaving the guild, those spies didn't make any movement, so it seems that I'm off the hook from their vigilance.
I show the adventurer badge written with F at the labyrinth's entrance.
It seems that the adventurer's badge uses A-F alphabet due to the influence of the first generation Saga Empire's hero.
Apparently it's the tradition to use the "Alphabet" rank that he used in the first Adventurer Guild of Saga Empire he built.
"Hmph, F rank huh. Stop at the goblin in the first floor. Goblin mages and goblin riders appear from the fifth floor. Don't approach them ever, you'll die y'know?"
"Thank you for the advice."
The gatekeeper with arrogant tone offered a kind advice.
After thanking the gatekeeper, I set foot into the labyrinth.
Dark. It seems that the floor isn't emitting dim light here unlike the labyrinths in Selbira and Seryuu cities.
It feels like the ruined labyrinth in the Duchy Capital instead.
The labyrinth's name is [Goblin Labyrinth: Ruin] after all.
According to Arisa, it seems to be a labyrinth that once lost its Dungeon Core and got revived, there are probably many functions that haven't been restored yet.
After walking for a bit, I obtained the labyrinth's information with [All Map Exploration].
It seems there are around 51 floors. Each floor is about three times as big as the narrow Seryuu City's [Demon Labyrinth]'s.
There's a demon lord in the lowest floor as the [Dungeon Master].
Now then, let's get it done quick!
The lunch that Lulu especially made would get cold if I don't clean this up quick after all.