16-46. Trial of Zaikuon (1)
Satou here. People who cannot explain well aren't exactly unusual, but even though I could tolerate clients who expect you to take a guess from their abridged explanations, I really can't handle those who don't even understand themselves that they actually want you to do that.
Tama and Pochi opened the door and went inside in high spirits.
"Oh, ain't it the lil' girls from Satou's place!"
"Ou! You guys were here too huh!"
The former attendants of previous hero Hayato, Rusus and Fifi received the jumping Tama and Pochi while laughing.
I thought they wouldn't accept a visitation right after their match, but the two gladly did.
"It's nice to see you two again."
"And spear ane-chan, you're here too!"
The two cheerfully stepped up to us while Pochi and Tama were hanging on their necks like Hawaiian leis. Pochi and Tama are frolic as they sway around while saying, "Buraa~n."
"You should have come out in the arena since you were already here and all."
"We'd definitely have an even more fun match if you guys were fighting."
I sat down on the seat the two offered as they said something that didn't sound like a lip service.
Liza fetched the hanging Tama and Pochi, and they changed their forms to play corpses under Liza's arms.
"Cakes that Satou brought are really good as always."
"Bring us some meat the next time you're here ok. That karaage and kakuni stuff you gave us back then were real nice."
While renewing old friendship with the two who had begun to heartily chomp down on the cake I brought, I tried asking them about the four heroes.
"We only know Meiko and Seigi though."
"Yuki and Hikutsu was it? Didn't Rin and Mary take care of the magician type guys?"
Looks like they don't even remember the explosive flame Hero Yuuki's and the discreet Hero Fuu's names.
"Meiko is fun, but she's got no stamina and drops down pretty quickly."
"Seigi is weak, but he can find monster nests real fast, so it's nice to take him along in a hunt."
Feels like the two have comparatively good opinions on Meiko and Seigi.
"Seigi kept looking at our breasts and butts though, that was funny."
"And then he immediately looked away every time we noticed."
Ignoring the talk about a young man in puberty, I throw a question to Rusus and Fifi.
"So you weren't going to be Hero Meiko or Hero Seigi's attendants?"
"Hmm, nah, nope."
"We're not even gonna last three days if we have to attend some haughty little girl and an ero brat."
"Right right. Meiko is haughty by nature, Seigi tends to say some incomprehensible stuff seriously then have this triumphant look on his face, I'd probably whack him before I noticed."
"They can be haughty all they want if they're as stupidly strong as Hayato was."
It seems like Rusus and Fifi will only abide by those who are stronger than them.
"We don't mind becoming your attendants if you win against us, Satou?"
"Yep yep, mistresses or retainers are nice too."
"Ah yeah, the village chief told us to give birth or something."
Please drop that kind of talk.
"Well, let's talk more about that if you could 『Win against us』."
"Yep yep, hold yer' horses till then."
"Well then, looks like I'd have to train harder with my sword."
I politely dealt with them and then return to the topic at hand.
"So instead of becoming their attendants, you two journeyed to the continent west?"
They must have found high-ranking nobles who tried to persistently court them into becoming their subordinates annoying.
"Oh yeah--Satou, do you know about vampires?"
"Yes, I've had a fight with one once, so I know a bit about them."
Even while feeling surprised at the sudden turn of topics, I nodded while recalling the vampire princess Semeri that I fought and the reincarnated true ancestor Ban on Selbira's Labyrinth Lower Layer.
"Those guys showed up at the neighboring country y'see."
"It was amazing ya know? It was an army of Blood Stalkers and Vampire Slaves led by Vampires, with enough rank to consume a city whole."
"Well, they were no match for us, but their leader, a Vampire Lord was pretty tough."
"That's super amazing nodesu! Pochi wants to fight one too!"
Hearing Rusus and Fifi's stories, Tama and Pochi stood up on the sofa with sparkling eyes.
And of course, it ended up with Liza scolding them and them quickly shifting into the reflection pose.
"Where did those vampires come from?"
"I mean it's far away from the Bloodsucking Labyrinth, they were probs monster who were hiding in a nearby monster domain or something?"
Apparently the two only took care of the vampires, and didn't know what happened afterward.
"That was when a patrolling monster-hunting warship from Saga Empire passed above us, so we left all the clean-up to them."
I feel that's quite a convenient coincidence, but there was probably an oracle if it was a city-destroying disaster, it wouldn't be strange if they were deployed for relief.
According to Rusus, about seven Saga Empire warships are patrolling around the neighborhood of the small countries on the continental west, it's not that rare for them to receive an SOS signal and come to the rescue.
"But with that many vampires appearing, wouldn't that deal a huge blow on that country?"
"Yep, exactly. The royal capital was half destroyed, and about two towns were annihilated."
"Apparently, some refugee even flowed to this country too."
That's quite a huge damage.
"Oh don't make that face."
"Yep yep. Saga Empire has dispatched their relief unit to that country, they should be distributing food and stuff right about now."
If there's already relief groups helping them, I suppose I don't have to stick my nose into it?
Rusus and Fifi, who perceived a serious aura coming from me, cheerfully changed the topic to about how we would have fought in the matches we watched.
"Rush up like fwoosh, then prick out like zubaban nodesu!"
"They ain't gonna let you come near them."
"No worries nanodesu! Pochi is quick on her feet nodesuyo!"
"Lurk around like nyunnyun, then nyururu~ headhunting nyan."
"Oh scary, headhunting's scary."
"Headhunting is the basic of ninja~?"
Everyone seems to be having fun with the new topic.
<TLN: If you're reading this novel at any other site than Sousetsuka .com you might be reading an unedited, uncorrected version of the novel.>
『--It's all your fault!』
The harmonious atmosphere was destroyed by a shout from outside the room.
Looks like some people are quarrellings in the passage.
Tama and Pochi look up at me anxiously, thus I pat their heads.
According to Map info, they seem to be the [Holy Warriors of Zaikuon] Rusus and Fifi beat earlier.
From what I can gather from the coming voices, the temple knight Senuma is unilaterally disparaging his miko partner.
"I'll give them a bit of warning."
Please at least pick the place if you want to quarrel.
『Those parion women won because you surrendered!』
The voice of a man assaulted my ears the moment I opened the door.
Apparently this guy completely shelved the fact that he was the reason for her surrender.
『I am the [Holy Warrior of Zaikuon], who could even be considered as God's Apostle! Yet I have to taste defeat at the hands of mere attendants of hero, all because of you!』
At the passage, in the nearest corner, I found the miko who fits the words [Man among Men] and [Rock], and a handsome young man overflowing with the aura of small fry.
Even while I was walking toward them, the hysteric voice continued to verbally abuse the rock miko's poor healing magic and her muscular body.
"You're bothering the neighborhood, could you please leave it at that?"
"Who the hell are you?"
The temple knight seemed to be offended by my warning, he trotted toward me and attempted to grab my neck with his hand.
Then he revolved once in the air.
At the opposite direction of Tama who struck her signature pose below me, the temple knight had fainted after hitting his head on the concrete, still with a dumbfounded expression on his face.
I think that move earlier was Air Throw instead of Shrike Drop, but now's not the time to point out such a trivial stuff.
The rock miko looks after the temple knight with a worried expression.
Even though she had just been excessively disparaged, her figure nursing the temple knight is overflowing with affection.
"What's this, ain't you the Zaikuon guys from earlier."
Rusus and Fifi who were looking here from the room's door came.
Along with Liza and Pochi of course.
"Hey, I think you'd better learn how to choose a man."
"Yep yep, a man is not about his face. But his strength."
Rusus and Fifi gave their advices to the rock miko.
For some reason, below them, Tama and Pochi are making an appeal by striking the bodybuilder poses from the arena earlier with their soft squishy bodies, cute.
"I-It's not like I yearn for Senuma-dono's.... It's just, we were raised together like siblings since we were little so..."
"Ooh, childhood friends eh, nice."
"So like, he's been protecting you since childhood?"
"No, it's me who's..."
While grinning wide, Rusus and Fifi listen attentively to the rock miko who's blushing like a maiden.
It appears that these two like to talk about love story too.
The rock miko's love story continued on until after a priest from the main temple came looking for her.
"--There sure is a lot of homeless people here."
"Yes. Many of them also look exhausted."
I caught sights of lots of dirtyish people sitting in back alleys and under overhang roofs on our way to the main temple with the priest and the rock miko.
They must be the refuges that came from the neighboring country that Rusus and Fifi mentioned.
"Does the temple not do anything to help the refuges?"
"Oh, of course we do. We offer food and places to protect from rains and winds to believers of God Zaikuon who do labor service."
The priest affirmed my question.
Looks like it's exclusive to their believers after all.
"Unfortunately, Zaikuon Temple cannot afford to give aid indiscriminately free of charge."
"Until God Zaikuon has regained his powers, we too are on the side of those who hang on the goodwill of countries and people..."
Rock miko and the priest told me that.
I'll give lots of foodstuff-related donations to Zaikuon Main Temple and every other temple once the trial is over.
We arrived at Zaikuon Main Temple while I was considering that.
This building must have been a solemn building originally, but due to deteriorations and cracks here and there, it kinda looks shabby somehow.
"It's of grave importance to mend this temple, but we cannot possibly work on it for the time being."
The priest seemingly noticed my line of sight as he said that in frustration.
The fact that he continues to have faith despite in this situation where they cannot use holy magic due to the demise of their god, is a proof of his devotion.
I'm glad he hasn't been warped like the chubby priest at Seryuu City.
『--O God. God whom we revere.』
The rock miko who's changed into miko outfit progresses the ceremony.
The miko outfit surprisingly fits the muscular rock miko.
Responding to the rock miko's call, a bright yellow light came down from the heavens.
The novelty has worn off since this is my fifth ceremony already.
The miko's stern face turned loose.
She's entered the trance state.
『Ye foolish one who dares to challenge my trial.』
Inorganic voice of a man echoed in my mind.
This seems to be God Zaikuon's voice.
Whom should I fight?
Don't tell me, do I have to fight God Zaikuon himself?
Judging from Arisa's fight with him, it's not like he can't be beaten, but I'd feel sorry for the reincarnated person Kei who was also a fake apostle of God Zaikuon if he died again, so I'd like to avoid it if possible.
There's a filter to prevent my thoughts from leaking out through the mind magic [Mind Connection Advance] I'm using right now, but the other party is still a god.
There's no guarantee that the filter won't be broken through, I should stop with disrespectful thoughts.
『That is not a bad idea, however--』
The scenery before my eyes changed while he was going to say my opponent.
It looks similar to the World of Miniature Garden that Goblin Princess Yuika created in the labyrinth's lower layer.
Looking at my Map, I'm met with [Map Does not Exist in this Space] indication.
『Reign victorious over three fights.』
God Zaikuon's voice disappeared after telling me that.
Thud, I turned around hearing that sound and saw that the rock miko had fallen down on the white ground.
For now, I take out a bed from Storage through Item Box and let her rest on it.
Now then, wonder how should I fight?
※ Next Update is planned for 5/13