16-73. Intermission: The House-sitting Team and Small Accidents in the World (2)
※ This is the surprise intermission update part 2
"You must be evil!"
Shiga Kingdom's marquis daughter, China, pointed her finger at the former magic hunter Kon boy who had just saved her from peril, using the sound of [Bell of Justice] in her hand as a justification.
"China, gratitudes first."
"That's right, China-sama. You shouldn't treat the benefactor who saved us from bad men like a rascal you know."
China's friends, the wingkin sisters, Shiro and Crow admonished her before the two princesses of Rumooku kingdom, princess Menea and princess Rimia behind the dumbfounded Kon could raise their eyebrows.
"B-but but, the 『Bell of Justice』 rang because it found an evil!"
China showed the bell in her hand to everyone.
As if agreeing to her, the bell is letting out a cool chiming melody.
Shiro, Crow, China, the princess sisters, Kon boy and the three boys of knight academy students that stood in the way of the bad men in the beginning all gathered their line of sight at the bell.
"Hmmm, this bell's hollow inside and all too, this thing's rad."
Kon boy exclaimed his amazement after peering into the bell's hole.
One of the boys crouched down and beckoned China.
"Isn't that the 『Evil』?"
The boy pointed toward a suspicious man who had his face hidden under a hood.
He's bending his back while carrying some kind of a big bag.
China and all the kids turned their line of sight toward the man.
The man was surprised at the sudden attention and dropped the luggage off his hand after screaming lightly.
With a heavy thud, the bag fell on the ground, showing the content that was covered in cloth.
The chiming sound of the [Bell of Justice] got even louder.
"So fishy! That's it, that must be evil!"
Right when China shouted, the man ran away while hiding the black crystal in the cloth once again.
The Knight Academy boys ran off to chase the man.
"We're going too!"
"H-hang on! You're just gonna leave these ruffians here?"
"I've no time for small fries when a great evil is right before me! Leave them to the guards."
After stating that to the serious Crow, China and Shiro dashed off.
"This looks fun. Let's go after 'em Rimia-sama."
"N-no don't, Kon."
In place of the famously shy little sister, the reliable elder sister reminded him.
"But why, Menea-sama."
"Aren't you Rimia's guard? What are you doing leaving Rimia alone?"
"I'm not leaving anyone behind. I said let's go, together."
"There's no way someone who carried around such a suspicious item not be up to no good, is it? You're not fit to be her guard if you're willing to take her to such dangerous situations!"
"No, stop it. Both you Kon and ane-sama, please stop fighting."
Princess Rimia desperately tried to arbitrate the two to stop arguing back and forth.
In the meantime, the man with black crystal and the girls who went after him had gone beyond the crowd.
What they never knew was the fact that the same black crystals were witnessed in various locations around the continent.
"This is bad..."
A small sailer is moored in the port of the leading city of Garleon Union, Garleon City.
"John! We've finished loading in the beer barrels!"
"Now we just need to load food and water before we can set off."
Two beautiful women wearing attires with excessive exposures scrambled to talk to a black haired boy standing on the bow of the small sailer.
His name is John Smith.
He's a Japanese boy who was summoned by Rumooku Kingdom's king's little sister.
The boy who went on a journey in another world with neither Unique Skill nor that high of a level, relying on nothing--no, nothing but [Burying] skill and modern knowledge cheat, has become successful enough to finally own a small sailer with his many luck, character, ability to take action and knowledge.
"How long will loading water and food take?"
"It's prob gonna be done by tomorrow evening?"
'I mean lots of the workers took a rest due to cold, and got hurt in fights', the two beauties made an excuse in their mind.
Hearing that, John muttered, "We won't make it then."
"I'll pay them extra. Have it done by the end of the day."
The two beauties turn pale instead of complaining at John's unreasonable demand.
"Don't tell me--."
"Yeah, my 『Crisis Perception』 and 『Alertness』 skills are telling me something bad is going down."
""We've gotta hurry!""
"I'll go negotiate with the foreman in charge of cargo to see if he could speed it up!"
"Then I'm gonna go get more workers!"
The two beauties jump off the small sailer.
Their had serious expressions on their faces as they had experienced firsthand being saved by his skills many times during their journey with John.
John longingly murmured the name of his former lover he parted ways with as he gazed beyond the horizon.
The impatient feeling which indicates the crisis told by his skills is coming very close.
God only knows whether he's going to able escape the impending danger thanks to his inborn characteristic as a coward or not.
"--Did you call, Ruu?"
"I didn't. Aren't you just hearing things?"
Ruu stopped polishing her armor at Lilio's question and replied to her while shaking her head.
These girls are currently in the labyrinth garrison surrounding the [Labyrinth of Devil] located in Seryuu Earldom's capital.
"Really now, I thought someone just called me, must be my imagination."
Ruu nodded at Lilio who said that like whatever and went back to the polishing.
"Excuse me. Is Iona-san here?"
Ruu paid no heed as the armor she was polishing fell and stood up to salute knight Yukel Marientail.
He's the little brother of Zena, Lilio and Ruu's former squad leader.
"Please just take it easy. I've heard so much about you all from Ane-sama, so please just call me Yukel like you did Ane-sama."
"Y-yes! I'm honored."
Lilio whispered, "Hee, so Ruu's with~"
The [Heroic] Yukel who had performed great during the greater demon assault on Seryuu City seemed to be a special existence to even Ruu who usually acted manly.
"Yukel-cchi, Iona-san is--"
"Oy, Lilio! Watch your tone! Sir Yukel is going to be a baronet by next year."
"Hooi. Then, Knight Yukel."
Yukel corrected them, "My ennoblement is still in an unofficial form though", but neither of the two heard him.
"If you're looking for Iona-san she went to Echigoya Firm."
"Yup, she was gonna fetch something from Zena-cchi."
Yukel who's suffering slightly from sister complex rushed out of the garrison the moment he heard his sister's name.
With his speed that got a boost from level ups, he arrived in front of Echigoya Firm's branch office in no time flat.
Yukel made a sudden brake when he was about to bump into Iona that just got out of the branch office.
As Yukel was going to ask while gasping for breath, he paused when he saw the person behind Iona.
"As a knight of Seryuu Earldom, the sight of you panicking will cause anxiety to the populace. Stand tall with dignity no matter the situation."
Ouna is Yukel's fiancee, a former [Oracle Miko] of Parion Temple, and the daughter of Earl Seryuu to whom he serves.
Even her eyes that are usually filled with gentle lights would turn astute when she's scolding people.
"Yukel-sama, this here is a Miasma Meter sent by Echigoya Firm at the capital."
"The capital's Echigoya Firm? Is it from Ane-sama?"
"No, it's from Kuro-sama."
Ouna replied to Yukel.
"Then, the outbreak the other day--"
Ouna blushed as she recalled the time when she was inflicted with a succubus-borne illness.
Seeing that, Yukel's face also turned red.
Iona turned away at the super sweet mood, but then she recalls the things they need to do and turns her sight back at the two lovebirds.
Iona coughed on purpose.
"Ouna-sama, about the illness you mentioned--"
"Hold it. This isn't the place to talk about that. Let's borrow a room at Echigoya Firm."
Afterward, they went to a room with anti-counterespionage function installed in Echigoya branch office.
"We managed to restore people and posts that were in precarious states with medicines provided by Kuro-sama. And now, this Miasma Meter is for finding places that look fine on the surface."
"Fine on the surface?"
Ouna nodded at Yukel.
"This Miasma Meter is a prototype so its accuracy is not that good, but it will give a reaction when it detects an amount of miasma that would naturally produce undead."
Ouna recounted the thing Echigoya Branch head told her earlier.
She understands very well the advantage of a magic tool capable of looking for places with thick miasma density, as up until now they had to rely on either holy magic or intuitions to achieve the same thing.
"This Miasma Meter should react to places where demons are lurking."
"I understand. I shall go on a patrol around Seryuu City right away!"
Yukel who was about to rush out was stopped by Ouna's shout "Yukel!", then she advised him to ride a horse for the patrolling.
Iona couldn't be the only one who imagined that Ouna would put a tight leash on Yukel in the future.
"We, the Zena Squad, shall go patrol the neighboring villages and towns."
"That would be great, Iona. This is something that can only be entrusted to those I truly trust from the bottom of my heart."
"We will do our utmost to accomplish this mission and answer Ouna-sama's faith in us."
Iona saluted at Ouna and left the place.
At nightfall that day, Yukel confronted a member of a crime guild who was carrying around a black crystal.
<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.>
"Unusual black crystal?"
"Yeah, Rina of Brighton City sent it. Apparently she found the crystal in the mouth of a guardian dog golem along with a suspicious man."
Consul Nina continued her report to Marquis Muno who looked perplexed.
The leaders of Muno Marquisdom and the marquis family have gathered here. Muse, wife of the eldest son, Orion, is not present due to her expecting a baby. Taking a lesson with the last one, Orion has gotten aides that could keep their mouth shut now.
"The man is a member of a crime guild whose headquarters is located at the eastern small country group. the crystal was a cursed item called 《Miasma Crystal》. I gathered the priests of all the temples in the city to perform a purification ritual on it. Sorry for doing it without your permission."
"I don't mind that of course. If we left a cursed item alone and let some demon to wreak havoc here, I wouldn't be able to look straight at Satou-kun."
Marquis Muno nodded at consul Nina.
"Perhaps the reason why there was an outbreak of disputes and cold among the populace a while ago was due to that cursed item?"
"Hmm probably not."
Consul Nina shook her head at Soruna, Marquis Muno's eldest daughter.
"Shouldn't we mobilize the citizens to watch out for suspicious individuals in addition to increasing the number patrolling guards?"
"That's probably not a good idea, Orion-dono."
Chevalier Zotor who's in charge of commanding the army added, "There is no guarantee that it will stop at eliminating suspicious individuals, some might even begin to act radically after all."
"But, isn't it impossible for the territorial army to patrol all side roads along with the main highways?"
Honorary Chevalier Hauto who just had his wedding with Soruna raised a reasonable point.
"The side roads are fine. According to Rina's letter, Satou's proteges, former explorers who are staying at Brighton City are patrolling the side roads. The kobold forest guardians are also watching over roads that are along the mountains. They were apparently also asked by Satou to help in time of emergency."
"Earl Pendragon again..."
The next Marquis Muno, Orion the eldest son mumbled bitterly to hear the name of their top retainer whose fame and achievements know no bound.
Even though he has rebuilt his relationship with Earl Pendragon, he cannot hide his displeasure when it's this extreme.
"Orion, I get your worries, but there's no point in mulling over that."
Nina chided Orion.
"No point? Just because it's none of your business--
"That's not necessarily true. Besides, if Satou was seriously plotting to usurp anything, forget Muno territory, he'd get the whole Shiga Kingdom if he just so desired."
"That's just a tall tale..."
Orion faltered midway.
"You think it's impossible? That guy has full support of the people. Lots of nobles look up to him too. Heck, he even went and defeated a demon lord together with the hero. And he also brought the entire entourage back with all their limbs intact through all that. Marquis, has there ever been a case where a hero brought back all of his attendants safely with them?"
"Can't say there's none, but you can count it on one hand. Though, Satou-kun himself didn't seem to think much of the feat as anything big. For him, bringing Pochi-kun, Tama-kun and everybody back was only obvious. And he himself doesn't care for anything more than to have everyone just living a fulfilling life, I'm sure of it."
Hearing the words from the one that understands Satou most, Marquis Muno, everyone besides Orion nodded.
"I mean, everybody is beating their heads against the wall over trying to serve under him than to be wary of him. I don't mean that you have to curry his favor or anything, but there's no point in trying to test him to see if he's going to revolt or not."
The meeting ended after Nina gave the warning.
"Well then, off you go to patrol. Pina, bring the former armed maids with you and patrol the castle interior. Erina go with Talna and other armed maids to help the guards."
"Yessu. Here we go ssuyo, newbie-chan."
Zotor gave an order to the people who were waiting outside the meeting room, and went to the guard station along with Hauto.
At the same time, at the very first village that Satou reclaimed, children riding on the back of a cat golem was dragging a suspicious person with them to the elderly village head.
"Grampa, guardian cat-sama caught a weirdo."
"Ooh? He does look suspicious."
"Hey gramps, he's carrying a bag full of horns."
The cat golem swiftly took away the bag as a little girl tried to open it.
The little girl never realized, but anyone who saw the cat golem's fine play would surely offer it their unreserved applause.
These horns are cursed items, [Short Horns], that could transform people into demons.
"Aaa, lemme see that."
The cat golem shook its head in refusal.
"Looks like it's something real dangerous. Cat-dono, sorry but could ya go with this old man to the marquisdom capital."
And thus, another scheme had been put to rest before it turned into an accident.
"Masita's not coming."
"I want to see Nana."
Sealkin children who were dipping their legs in the water at the port found a mysterious ship sailing underwater in the great river.
"Found something weird?"
"Found something weird."
The port people who were warmly watching over the sealkin children overheard them and peered underwater to also find the suspicious ship.
By a miraculous coincidence, the warship where Marquis Lloyd and Earl Houen were on heard the report, and cornered the suspicious ship with the newly developed magic cannons and magic torpedoes.
"Remnants of 『Wings of Liberty』?"
"Those guys' still around huh, geez, can't even eat tempura in peace."
"Indeed indeed. Let's get this over with and get back to eating Satou-dono's made prawn tempura."
"Don't forget the red pickled ginger tempura."
"Verily so, one has to eat tempura fresh off the fry."
After an interrogation performed by Marquis Lloyd's subordinates, they found out that someone gave fund and black crystals called <<Miasma Crystals>> to the remnant of [Wings of Liberty] to have them terrorize the duchy capital, hearing that report, Duke Oyugock notified all nobles in his territory and the self-governing dominion Bolhart to patrol the area.
In another place, at a certain magic shop in the self-governing dominion Bolhart.
"Jojori, you're as beautiful as ever."
"Galhar, don't try to change the subject, you have to stock stuff that actually sell, you hear me."
Galhar averted his gaze from heaps of powder-type firearms piled up on the tables of his magic shop.
He was certain that he'd make a killing when he bought these, but no excuse would work here for sure.
"Yo, Galhar. Brought the sulfur 'ere with me."
"Hey, Galhar. Here's yer' saltpeter."
Don and Han brothers who own the other magic shop in Bolhart brought sacks full of sulfur and saltpeter into the shop.
"Galhar, what're you gonna do with charcoal--Jojori?! Why are you at Galhar's store?!"
Zajiur the best pupil of Elder Dohar threw down a sack full of charcoal and pressed on Jojori.
Looks like it's another peaceful day at the self-governing dominion Bolhart.
"--I won't let you get away!"
Voice of a little girl echoed in the winding back alleys of the capital.
"China, don't toss around too much."
"That's dangerous, China-sama."
China who's piggybacking Shiro is chasing after a fleeing man holding a black crystal.
The man is pretty quick on his feet even though he's carrying a huge bag.
Of course, Shiro and Crow could catch up to him in a jiffy if they went at it seriously, but they're keeping a pace that makes the pursue fun to China.
As for the three knight academy students, they fell out of the race halfway through, as they were seemingly still suffering from the damage dealt to them by the ex-merc.
And the sister princesses of Rumooku Kingdom and their escort, Kon boy, were never along for the ride.
At a corner when they were about to lose sight of the man, several mice formed an arrow shape to tell the direction.
Shiro and Crow said their thanks to the Sage Mice of the underground empire and continued their pursue.
The Sage Mice aren't the only one helping.
Crows and pretty jade-colored birds exposed the fleeing man's routes and hiding places, helping China and the girls.
"This villain has a really bad luck. I wonder if he's disliked by animals?"
It seems like China doesn't notice the abnormality of the situation at all.
"We got you cornered now!"
China declared her victory as they cornered the man on top of a cliff in a natural park.
"No, not yet!"
The man threw down the overcoat covering his body, and ran out to jump off the cliff while spreading a membrane like that of flying squirrels.
"We can't let him get away!"
"Got it, China."
"It's okay, we won't let him China-sama."
Shiro and Crow spread their wings.
However, it seems these wings need not to soar in the sky.
A green mass fell down along with a cheerful cry.
THUD, the man got crushed.
"Dragon! It's a green dragon! I know! It's a good dragon that comes to the capital to play!"
The infant dragon cried out proudly as if answering to China's excited voice.
It dragged out of the man captured under its belly, and repulsively kicked away the black crystal the man was carrying.
"It's still alive, I think."
Thanks to luck, the man didn't get crushed to death by the infant dragon.
The infant dragon must have been careful not to kill him.
"China, what to do with the crystal here."
"Unn, bury it?"
"That's a bit... Let's consult with the adult."
Crow asked the help of Echigoya Firm using the short-range comm device that Satou gave her.
"My presentiment proved to be correct after all."
While gazing at China who looked triumphant, "Evil has been destroyed", and Shiro who seemed whatever, Crow thought to herself, "This was another fun day."
"Crow? Oh you mean the wingkin Earl Pendragon is looking after. That child brought this?"
In Echigoya's office room, general manager Elterina received a report from her confidant and secretary, Tifaliza.
"Yes, it's an item called <<Miasma Crystal>>, it seems to be a support item for Soul Magicians. In its raw form, it contains enough miasma that can make anyone who gets close to it to suffer from miasma poisoning, so please take care not to take it out of this quarantine case."
"Have you contacted Kuro-sama?"
"I've reported this to the Solitary Island Palace, but Kuro-sama is currently engaging a demon lord in Saga Empire. I have conveyed the information to her highness Shistina."
"Understood. And the report to the king?"
"Her highness is taking the matter in her hand."
"I see, that's a big help. It would take too long if I were to go."
After pondering a bit, the manager issued an instruction to the top management.
"We will entrust the guards to strengthen the defense inside the capital. We will ask the beggar guild whom we're on good terms with to have its members gather information about weird happenstances in the capital. That's probably the most helpful assistance we can offer to Kuro-sama. Tell our branch offices to gather intelligence, and warn the lords at their locations about black crystals and abnormal events happening there."
After saying that, the manager gave instructions to each members.
Yes! The top management left the room after giving spirited responses.
"I hope there's nothing big going to happen..."
Tifaliza smiled when the manager murmured that.
"No, considering we are in a situation where a demon lord has appeared at Saga Empire's capital, that statement is a bit"
"Oh right, now that mention it."
Afterward, both laughed out loud.
Apparently they found it amusing that they had come to think that such a world crisis as the appearance of a demon lord to be [nothing big].
Thus, the goblin demon lord's plot is crumbling pieces by pieces all while he's none the wiser.
※I couldn't find fit these in the intermissions. If I find the chance to write these...
Eastern small country group [Kiwolk Kingdom/Lightsnow Princess], [Makiwa Kingdom], [Country of Dragon], [Rumooku]
Central small country [Kubooku Kingdom]
Shiga Kingdom [Labyrinth City], [Kuhanou Earldom], [Ganica Marquisdom], [Lesseu Earldom]
<Translator's note: Next chapter is not an intermission chapter.>