17-16. Pink-colored Calamities
"Sold out?! What do you mean by sold out!"
"Exactly what it says ssuyo. Our store's stock is zero ssu."
Red-haired Nell who was working as a salesperson in Echigoya Firm's store replied while using a tray to defend herself from flying saliva the unreasonable customer shot out.
"When are you gonna get more!"
"Next delivery is undecided ssu."
"What?! Then deliver them to my house once you have it."
"We can't ssu~ We don't do home deliveries ssu."
"Then put aside some for me."
"Too bad but we don't accept reservations for candy ssuyo."
"What! I am the customer here!"
The customer whom Nell was dealing with flew into a rage.
Echigoya Firm's security caught him as he was about to grasp Nell.
"If you really want one no matter what, how about buying off adventurers in front of the tower ssuka?"
Nell said so to the back of a former customer who was being taken away by security.
Nell's advice seemed to have hit the former customer's nerve as he kept cursing out abusive language on his way getting dragged out.
"Is it about candy again?"
"Yep ssu. Gimme anything, coffee, cola whichever, he said."
Nell affirmed her coworker, Manager's secretary, Tifaliza's question.
"The signboard 『We are sold out of candy』 in the entrance does not seem to have any effect, does it."
"Lots of people can't read after all~"
Even after the popularization of Study Cards which were said to originate from Seryuu City, the literacy rate in the capital is as low as ever.
"Maybe I should ask Tama-sensei to draw a sold out picture ssukane?"
The shadow on Nell's foot wriggled.
"Yep ssu. Even those who can't read should understand pictures ssuyo."
"Let's forget that you're trying to ask one of the busy [Demon Lord Slayers] for a sec, using pictures is a good idea. Let's commission art dealers that are in good terms with our firm."
The shadow on Nell's foot sunk down lonesomely after Tifaliza said so before leaving to make preparations.
No one heard a small "Shame~" sigh in the hustle bustle of the market.
Looks like we'll have to wait for another chance to witness Cat Ninja showing off her genius artistic skills.
"Guess three really are too much?"
"We can do it! Three gobu are nothing to us!"
Five boys holding farming tool-like clubs are fighting three Demigoblin Vanguards inside a [Tower].
Demigoblin Vanguards are not a strong monster at all, but so are these young boys who have never taken a proper training in their life before.
The bloodied boys continued to strike the Demigoblin Vanguards with their clubs even while getting hurt by the goblins' claws.
"Keep at it!"
"Some candy might drop if we beat three of 'em."
From what you can get on the tower's lower floors, Candy sell more than magic core fragments whose price crashed.
Right as the ugly fight was reaching its climax, voices of men could be heard coming from a nearby corner.
"Hehee, thanks fer' wounded gobu!"
Three men running in and killed two Demigoblin Vanguards in a flash.
While the boys were dumbfounded by the rapid development, the men picked up their loot.
"Ooo, yeah. Got candy!"
"And this one's a magic core, not a fragment."
The men rejoiced while ignoring the boys.
"Don't steal our prey!"
"T-that's our gobu!"
"Whaddya want, huh!"
The men erased their smiles when the boys protested and began flaunting their weapons, pressuring with stern looks on their faces.
The men are wearing well-used leather armor along with the recently popular gobu swords and gobu axes as weapons of choice.
"We saved your ass when you boys were gonna get killed by those gobu!"
When one of the boys was about to object, the man with beard pressured him into silence.
"Oh crap, it ran off!"
The last Demigoblin Vanguard ran away when the bearded man was pressuring the boys.
"Folks, go after it!"
The men ran after the goblin while brandishing their swords around to hold the boys at bay.
The boys who were left behind began hitting walls and floors with their clubs, frustrated at having their prey stolen.
"We worked so hard to weaken those goblins."
"Our candy and magic core..."
"And I thought we would have a moldy bread-less feast today..."
"Those guys should have no problem fighting on upper floors."
The boys kept grumbling while doing an emergency treatment on themselves.
『So unfair isn't it.』
『Adults are unfair aren't they.』
"Yeah yeah! Those guys are supposed to be adults!"
Young sounding voices could be heard from somewhere.
Little girls' voices.
Their figures can't be seen.
『Bad people need to be punished, don't you think.』
"Punishment to bad adults!"
Yet, none of the boys found it bizarre.
『What kind of punishment fit for those guys?』
"Un, umm. I know! I hope those guys stumble down hard while running after that goblin!"
The little girl laughed 『Kusu kusu』 at the kind boy's words.
『Are you fine with something so light?』
『Don't you think bad people should be punished more harshly?』
The little girls breathed malice into the boys.
"That's right! Those guys should have their weapons break and get eaten by goblins!"
"Yes! They should meet an ogre in the middle of chase and get blown apart like boom!"
"Get eaten from their head down!"
『Nice, that punishment sounds nice.』
『Just the right punishment for bad people.』
Miasma that leaked out of the boys' bodies flowed into the depth of darkness.
At the same time, grim expressions from the boys loosened up.
『Master will be happy if we punish bad people.』
『I'm sure he will.』
『Will he praise us?』
『He'll praise us. He'll also pat us for sure.』
『We might even get a kiss on cheek.』
『Can't wait for it.』
『Looking forward to it.』
The little girls' voices got smaller as they went away.
"What were we doing again?"
"Mad at our gobu getting snatched?"
"Well whatever, who cares 'bout those guys. Let's look for our next prey."
"Right. Getting mad isn't gonna stuff our bellies anyway."
The boys who came to themselves resumed their hunt as if they didn't remember about the mysterious voices.
<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.>
"Tch, it just hafta ran around all over the place..."
"And just for a fragment?"
"Shoulda not went after it."
At a spot quite far from the boys, the men who snatched their prey finally beat the fleeing Demigoblin Vanguard.
"Heck, we sure ran deep."
"Where are we again?"
"Eeh, 's fine. There ain't enemy who coulda hurt us 'round these parts anyway."
"Yeah. We're gonna party hard if more gobu come out."
"Ya got that 'rite"
Not sure what's funny, the men look at each other before bursting into laughter.
『Found bad people.』
『Bad people, found.』
"Didcha say sumthin'?"
Only one of the men reacted to the little girls' voices.
One of the men stumbled upon a depression on the floor and fell down.
"Shut up. --Tch, dang this tower and its cheap traps."
"Like hell that a trap, so laaame."
The man who tripped shouted back at the man mocking him as if hiding his embarrassment.
"Oy oy, stop fightin' inside a labyrinth ya guys."
The leader man tried to mediate his friends who are grabbing each other collars, but these temperamental men show no sign of stopping.
"Come off it--what?"
Right as the man stepped forward to forcefully stop his friends who had started a punching match, he heard a heavy footsteps-like sound.
The man yelled at his friends, "Quiet down", and put his ear on the ground.
"Oh crap, some big one's coming."
"Ya mean tiny giant explorers bunch?"
The leader ran off by himself without replying to his friends.
"What's up with him."
The men were puzzled to see their leader's fluster.
A common sense that only Demigoblin Vanguards spawn on this floor has been carved in these men's mind during these past several months.
"Tiny giants, you mean those [Ogre Eater] bunch?"
"Or maybe the [Candy Hunters]."
"Ah, those guys huh. They shoulda do chain hunts on upper floors."
"You tell me."
The men reproved other parties' bad manners while being blind to their own.
The footsteps reached the corner at last.
The men had a cramp on their faces when they saw a <Demiogre Vanguard> coming out of the corner.
The men desperately ran off when the Demiogre Vanguard roared.
Afterward, they could heard thud thud sounds of the ogre chasing them.
"Why the hell there's an ogre here!"
"Hell if I know! That damn Jifu, scurrying off ahead of us!"
"There he is!"
Their leader was standing behind a pillar at the end of a path they're running toward.
His upper half was hidden behind black shadow, but for knowing him for so long, the men couldn't be mistaken.
"The heck didja ran off on yer own!"
"It's an ogre! You run--"
The man stopped in the middle of his speech.
Because the upper half of his friend that had come into view was missing.
The screaming men's views were turned upside down along with an impact.
They only noticed that the Demiogre Vanguard had caught up to and punched them when they saw it swinging down its fist toward them on the wall.
The man gave up trying to say, "Let's run", to his friend who fell next to him when he saw his unshapely bent neck.
As the man tried to crawl his way out, a Demiogre Vanguard stood before him while chewing something in its bloodied mouth.
The shrieking man swung its sword only to have it broken in half when it hit the ogre's armor.
The ogre caught the still shrieking man with both its hands, opened its huge mouth wide and took a bite.
『A bit wrong?』
『That was an accident.』
『Can't be helped then.』
『It really can't be helped. I mean, it's an accident.』
The pink-colored little girls whispered next to the man with broken neck.
『Let's go home~』
『Un, to where Master is.』
『Will he praise us I wonder?』
『I'm sure he will.』
『Shouldn't we clean up that ogre?』
『Eeh, too much work~』
『But you have to clean up your toys after using them you know?』
『Then you do it yourself? I'm going back ahead.』
『Me too~. Can't wait for Master's praise any longer.』
『W-wait for me~』
When the two little girls disappeared into a hole on the purple wall, the last one who was insisting to take care of the Demiogre Vanguard also ran after her friends, disappearing into the hole.
After eating all three corpses, the Demiogre Vanguards that were left on the site ended up reigning the lower floor with overt tyranny.
The next day, taverns were filled with rumors about Mabudachi, Shatei and a visiting dogkin warrior, who got rid of two Demiogre Vanguards.
Additionally, the boys whose prey was snatched away by the first victims apparently escaped the disaster since they moved onto another floor earlier on.
"Master, going out to instruct young organisms so I report."
Nana who has put on a disguise reported to Satou in living room of Solitary Island Palace.
Nana was asked by senior kids in the orphanage who wish to be explorers to lead them in their site practice in the tower.
"Be careful out there."
"Yes Master. 『Treasure your life』 so I firmly promise."
Nana saluted firmly before going out.
She's disguised herself to hide her [Demon Lord Slayer] identity.
Anyone will immediately find out about it once she talks, but it should be fine this time.
"Master, Elterina-san and Tifaliza-san from Echigoya Firm are here to see you."
"Thanks, Lulu. At the parlor no?"
Lulu who came in after Nana went out informed Satou.
Mia who was having a performance for Satou in living room showed her dissatisfaction for being interrupted.
"I'm sorry, Mia. Do play for me again once I'm done with work, okay."
Satou went to the parlor after poking Mia's puffed cheeks to return her face to normal.
"Kuro-sama, our apologies for coming without prior engagement."
Manager Elterina and secretary Tifaliza stood up and bowed to Satou when he got in the parlor.
"No no, don't worry about it."
Satou sat down on the sofa after encouraging the two to do so as well.
"Yep yep. You should visit us more often without reserve."
Arisa warped in and positioned herself next to Satou while speaking in a friendly manner.
She has her natural purple hair when she's here in the home ground Solitary Island Palace, not the blond wig she usually wears outside.
"It's about the matter with candy right? How was it?"
"Royal Research Institute did not detect a particularly dangerous substance. Here are the documents."
Satou looks over the documents Tifaliza handed him.
"The analysis result doesn't differ much from Burainan Clan's and Biroanan Clan's--but what is this postscript note about addictive effect?"
Satou asked while mentioning elven clans known for their love for research.
The research documents he got from the elves mentioned nothing about this addictive effect.
"That's not a result from analysis. As pertained in the documents, the result on that is negative when tested on guinea pigs such as rats and small birds. That postscript is an impression the researcher who did the test got from observing a trend in a portion of Royal Capital's populace. This addictive effect is so low and not on the level of banned drugs such as Corpse Drug or Fiend Drug however, it's at most on the level of a habitual drinker's fixation toward alcohol."
Satou was lost in thought after hearing Tifaliza's explanation.
That must be because he cannot tell whether the addictive effect is high or not.
He himself drinks, but he's never had a dependency on the level of alcoholic.
In former case, you can stop anytime you want to, but in latter case, the road to recovery is said to be so thorny to the point of requiring an entry in medical institutions.
Additionally, the reason why Satou requested an analysis on the candy was because the candy-loving Winged Fairies in Boruenan Forest started to get extreme in their demands for candy after several visits of him bringing in new drop items.
"It's not written here specifically, but is it like getting irritated when you run out of candy and resort to unscrupulous acts to get your hands on one?"
"My apologies. We don't know that--"
Tifaliza stopped in the middle of her speech.
"--Come to think of it, today. When Nell told a customer looking for candy that we were out of stock, it caused a commotion where the man tried to seize Nell with an extremely threatening attitude."
"Is Nell all right?"
"She is fine. Nell's level is high and the security made it in time."
Tifaliza smiled faintly when she saw Satou relieved to hear Nell was safe.
"Considering something like that occurred, maybe it's a good idea to hear the researcher's opinion on this? Who's in charge?"
"It's a man called associate researcher of Royal Research Institute." <TLN: was tled as runner-up before.>
"Ah, that guy huh..."
Satou murmured slightly disagreeably as he recalled an event that happened when the tower first appeared.
"Since it'd take too long if we depart from the capital's mansion, mind if I go from Echigoya Firm?"
"Yes, of course not."
After smiling back at the manager who gave her consent, Satou transformed into Kuro.
Without the conspicuous mask or scar, nor the distinctive gakuran, he's wearing a gentlemanly wear common in Shiga Kingdom.
"And of course, I'm going too right."
"Yeah, that's fine."
Mia who was peeking on the door, and Tama who showed up out of nowhere from Satou's shadow on the sofa requested accompany as well.
"No choice. Make sure to disguise yourselves okay."
Mia is wearing a blond wig like Arisa's, while Tama insisted that she'd be fine cause she's a ninja, however in the end, she couldn't resist the allure of a tiger set Satou prepared for her and okay'ed the disguise. Surely it's because she found the big pink ribbon to her fancy.
Arisa didn't look like she had a disguise with only her blond wig on, but since no one ever found out that she was a [Demon Lord Slayer] when she put it on, none of them complained.
"Kuro-sama! We've sold out all of our Seven-sensei's plush toys! Please tell Seven-sensei that she has an additional order when you meet her."
It's about plush toys that Seven-sensei--Nana started making for orphanage kids.
Those kids have started taking sewing lessons lately, and Nana are teaching them to make one.
"Okay, I got it. I'll make sure to tell her."
Kuro and the girls came through the market area on the first floor before going out.
"Ah! Tifa-san! Have you told Tama-sensei ssuka?"
"Huh? Don't tell me it's Tama-sensei ssuka!"
Tama took the [It's a secret] pose at Nell who shouted out loud.
"I'm sorry ssu."
After apologizing, Nell made a request for her to draw posters that indicate candy being out of stock
"So it can't be done ssuka..."
"Moving pictures may work, but there's only so many things you can represent with drawings. Something like smoking ban with a cross inside a circle should be doable tho'."
"Even Arisa-chan can't figure it out ssuka."
"Nell, Kuro-sama and his escort are about to go out. Save the talk after they're back."
The manager admonished Nell who started to mull over.
"Oh no ssu. Kuro-sama, forgive me ssu. Tama-sensei, let's talk about the matter with drawings later."
"Aye aye sir~"
Kuro and the girls waved at Nell and the other as they departed Echigoya Firm on the firm's wagon.
"It doesn't have to be a ban, a signboard to tell about candy counter will do, no?"
"Ah, I see. Drawing of store being out of stock might work."
Arisa struck her hands together at Satou's suggestion.
"That or maybe making a candy factory so it doesn't get sold out could be a solution. We've got lots of coffee beans we bought at Saga Empire anyway."
"Oh that's nice. That'd open employment opportunities too. Let's talk about the location for a new factory with Tifa-san once we get back."
"Now. ■■……■ Summon Messenger Pigeon."
Mia used summoning magic she just learned from a Phantasmal Labyrinth's [Blessing Orb] to summon a carrier pigeon.
Unlike ordinary carrier pigeons, this pigeon can fly to places the summoner is familiar with.
It'd be faster with space magic [Telephone], but surmising that Mia was eager to try out her new magic, Satou put a letter on the pigeon and let it fly without saying anything unnecessary.
"So, think those candy are the demon god's scheme too?"
Satou honestly replied to Arisa, "I'm not sure."
Seeing how demon lords and demons are, he doesn't believe that demon god is a virtuous existence. But considering his warnings toward reincarnated people about the danger of overusing Unique Skills when they get brought here, he also can't reliably conclude that he's pure evil.
The wagon passed through Royal Research Institute's gate as Satou was pondering hard.
『Where are bad people?』
『Wonder where, villains are?』
『We'll exterminate a whole lot and get Master's praises.』
『For the sake of getting Master's praises, let's exterminate a whole lot.』
『No bad people anywhere?』
『Must be one somewhere, I'm sure.』
『Bad people-san, please come out cause we're gonna exterminate you~』
The little girls are whispering about deep in the tower today as well.
It would take a bit more time before those voices reached Satou.
※Next update is planned for 5/26