Chapter 12 The Truth of Tower of Trial! (First Floor - Later Part)
Our party continues treading the first floor of the Tower of Trial.
The old man who's walking ahead crouches down.
"There's a trap 'ere. ....This one's a trap where something will fall from above."
The old man takes out some tools from the bag on his waist.
I speak to his back.
"Strong acid will fall down if you step on the floor to the right, the center one, and the one near the left wall."
"....Stop finding them faster than the pro man. I'm losing my confident here y'know."
The old man smiled while saying that and canceled the trap.
Celica's blue eyes are filled with surprises.
"You're amazing, Keika-sama. Seeing through even traps."
The old man speaks while peeling the stone pavements off the floor.
"You're gonna be a great thief. Wanna train?"
"I'm not gonna."
I replied while smiling wryly.
We continued on for a while. While steadily canceling the traps.
After a while, we came into a slightly large room. There's a wooden box and nothing else.
However, there are human bones scattered on the floor.
I look hard at them. Status appeared.
Name: Recovery Bone
Slash: A horizontal slash
Double Stings: Two stabbing attacks
Ray Sting: Stabbing attack that ignores defense
Recovery: Regenerate in 12 hours even if destroyed
"It's an enemy. Recovery Bone."
"What!? Such a powerful monster!?"
The old man was visibly upset.
With rattling sounds, the scattered bones are rebuilding themselves.
One blue skeleton warrior stands up. It's holding a sharp double edged sword in its hand.
Celica frowns and speaks with worry.
"It's alright. Just watch, Celica."
I put down the rucksack on my back and holds my Tachi in my right hand.
My Wafuku's sleeves sway, the sounds of my Geta are resounding.
The skeleton creaks and rushes in.
The sword on side--moving like it's going to slap--.
I make a large step and swing my Tachi matching the enemy--!
Sounding like hitting a rock, the skeleton's wrist spurted off.
With clattering sounds, the bones and the sword fell down on the floor.
I swing down my sword at the defenseless skeleton.
Hard sensation transmits on my hands.
The skeleton is split in two, from the cranium to the back bone.
Then it became blue sand and crumbled.
I sheathe my Tachi and turn back.
"Weak. Let's go ahead."
Celica's and the old man's eyes are wide open.
"Hm? What's wrong?"
"Y-y-you! Way awesome!"
"That's right, Keika-sama! Cutting down that skeleton in one slash!"
"Really? It wasn't that strong y'know."
Since we're being broadcasted and all, I tried to look like I was having a hard fight like a human would.
"Awesome. First time I saw a warrior killing a blue skeleton in an instant."
"Me too. Keika-sama is always surprising."
I scratch my head.
"Well, I was just lucky. Forget about that, let's press on."
"Y-you're right. Let us go."
Celica fixes her disheveled blond hair and pushes the big man ahead.
The old man approaches the wooden box.
I reflexively look hard at it.
It's displayed as 【Item Box】.
"Is thaat something like a treasure chest."
"Right. The clue to go up is inside."
There are a written paper, a key and a stone inside the wooden box.
【Equation of Truth】 Release Method 1.
【Key Parts】 Triangular Part. Three are needed to reach the truth.
【Dummy Key】 The door will explode if you use it on the floor door. The user will die.
Could it be that this third maze has many death traps in itself.
In order to legally kill someone they're paid to.
I somehow felt that.
"Apparently, the key is fake. The paper and the stone are needed it seems."
"You knew just by looking Keika-sama!?"
Celica and the old man were surprised.
"Well, somehow or another."
"Amazing desuwa.... As expected of the man that will become the hero."
Celica's words were filled with deep emotion.
I speak while straightening my rucksack.
"Well then, let's go."
We continue on the dungeon-like passage while canceling several traps and defeating many enemy.
Sometimes we got some items in a room.
These are all we got.
【Equation of Truth】 1,2,4.
【Key Parts】 a triangular pyramid, a cylinder, and a cone.
【Dummy Keys】 explosion, ice pick, heat oil.
This really seem to be a dungeon that can definitely kill the challengers. The dummy keys' effect are all instant death.
We fought many monsters, but I defeated them easily.
According to the two, the enemy were very strong by the Tower of Trial's standard.
The old man mutters while walking in the passage.
"Looking at the many traps, and the enemy's strength, this could be.... That huh."
"Do you know something?"
"Keika, you have a bad luck. This might be the dungeon to amuse the people by showing death to them."
"Ah, I see. So that's the reason."
Celica knits her brow and asks with a puzzled voice.
"What were they expecting creating such passages....?"
"That y'see. It's a service and direction to amuse the viewers."
"What do you mean?"
Celica tilts her head swaying her blond hair. It looks out-of-place in the dim dungeon, I think it's cute.
I take over.
"The people who are watching want at least one party to atrociously fail. Challengers dying is one part of the entertainment after all."
"H-how terrible! Even though the challengers are fighting with their lives to defeat the demon king--"
"I understand Celica's feeling, but it is what it is."
I pat her angry head. She bit her red lips in vexation.
And then we got to a place with tall ceiling after going left at a two way junction.
There are several round pillars.
There's an altar in the room.
With a big double door behind it.
"Looks like there's no enemy."
"Should I check it out?"
"No it's dangerous to go in. Let's take a break near this entrance."
You won't know it just by looking, but it can't deceive a God's eyes.
There are countless holes on the floor, the wall and the round pillars.
"Well then, let's rest for a bit."
Celica puts down her rucksack, and drink the water bottle on her waist. Her thin throat moves up and down.
"How many hours have we been inside?"
I asked and then the old man looked at something that resembled a compass.
"It's two hours."
"Quite long. Eight more hours huh...."
I look at the altar and the door with the <<Truth Sight>>.
The altar is made of white marble, there are a triangular, a round and a square holes on it.
There's also some candles for illumination.
【Altar】 a place to put key parts in order to continue to the next floor.
You will fall to the needle hell if you put in the wrong parts.
This is another instant death type.
I look at the door beyond. One part of the door is gridded, I can see stairs going above behind the door.
【Fake Floor Door】 a door that will definitely kill the challenger who's thinking of going up.
I reflexively laughed.
"Just how much of a shit game this is."
"Eh? Did you say something Keika-sama? ....Would you like some water."
Celica offered the water bottle to me.
"You'll die when you go up, you'll die when you insert the key. You'll die when you go to the next floo--hm?"
Leaving the water bottle in Celica's hand, I lost in thought.
--Why are the explanations of the Fake Floor Door and the Altar different?
Definitely die if you're going up?
Go to the next floor?
I suddenly realize something and raise my head.
"That means the next floor isn't above!"
Sharp glints of eyes glared in the room.
--The door with visible stairs going above behind it is a trap!
Normally you'd have thought that you must go up since the goal is on the rooftop.
And since you'd see the stairs behind the door in the room, you'd want to open it no matter what.
I unintentionally burst into laughter.
"Ahaha. The designer of this maze is evil to the core. Like he's the demon ki--"
My face turns serious.
I noticed the real reason why they're trying to kill the challengers for sure.
Not to amuse the viewers.
Not to assassinate someone they're paid to.
It's to definitely kill the superior candidate of heroes who might be able to defeat the demon king when they're still weak--.
--The designer is the demon king himself!--
My mouth warps, forming a ghastly smile.
"Enough. Going at this by the rule is just making a fool of ourselves--gimme that!"
I snatch the water bottle from Celica's graceful hand.
She was trembling in fear from my sudden change.
--Sorry, Celica. This irritation won't settle for a while.
There's no need to hold back if the other party is the demon king.
"Get the luggage! We're going!"
Celica and the old man grab the baggage in a hurry.
After making sure of that on the edge of my vision, I pulled my Tachi.
I pour water from the bottle on the blade!
The crest on the blade shines!
"In the name of Keika Hiko-no-Mikoto, o gentle breeze blowing in the ravine since the Age of Gods, gather into a bundle and form a gale--<<Roaring Tempest Slash>>!"
A huge wind is released from the swung Tachi!
it goes straight to the altar while whittling down the stone pavements.
Boom, it cuts the white marble altar in half.
The countless wind blades turn into a storm, blowing violently with the altar in the center.
Countless needles are shot from the wall and the floor. Thin lights that look like silver threads fill the room.
However, the tempest roars and strikes down all the needles.
The storm calmed down.
The floor is full of glittering silver needles.
The altar has been broken into pieces, and a stairs going down is opened below it.
I look at it with Truth Sight.
【True Stairs】 the stairs to the next floor.
"It was really below huh--"
I sheathe my Tachi while muttering.
Celica's blue eyes are wide open.
"A-amazing Keika-sama.... To think there would be a stair there...."
"Keika, you can do anything can't you...."
Well, I'm a God after all.
I take my rucksack and step toward the stairs.
Celica, the old man and the big man follow behind me in a hurry.
We come to the hole where the stairs are and peer below.
Dim basement. I can feel presences of something moving.
Dry wind blew up, swaying my hair.
Celica puts her hands on her big breasts and nodded seriously. Her blond hair powerfully shakes.
"Alright, leave it to me."
The old man replied with a fearless smile on his square face.
Healed by the two's voice that were mixed with trust and respect, I went down the stairs.