Lecan was excited.
He's only a few steps away from finally taking on this so-called Grand Dungeon for real.
On top of it, the dungeon is also known as <Dungeon of Swords> where you can obtain swords that have all kinds of graces.
He's got a partner in Arios too.
Exploring in a group of two will enable him to fight on deeper floors than he could by himself. Naturally he doesn't believe they could conquer the last floor with just the two of them. They're probably gonna need more people once they got to floor 100 and beyond, he's gotta look for party members.
However, they should be more than capable enough to handle shallower floors.
What kind of enemies would he meet.
What kind of fight would he relish in.
Lecan inadvertently smiled when he thought of those.
His left finger got the silver ring on. It's come to a point where he never takes it off except during bathing and sleeping times. He's got it on even in sleep when he's camping outside or inside a dungeon.
<Dagger of Harut> is on his right waist. A holder exclusively made for this dagger is tightly fastened to his belt where it stores the entire dagger, blade and grip, so it won't fall out by mistake. Taking it out requires some work, but it's not an equipment that needs instantaneous availability anyway. Fortunately, <Dagger of Harut> is an extremely small dagger, so it doesn't hinder his movement.
<Guardian Jewel of Zana> and <Necklace of Intuador> are inside his <Storage>. They'll probably get their turn sooner or later.
Hanging on his left waist is <Sword of Rusk>. This sword has got the best handling. Which keeps getting better the more he uses it. He'll probably find an even better sword in this dungeon, but he's gonna rely on this sword for the time being.
(Come to think of it, what did Shira say again about this dungeon during that tea break.)
(Felt like she said something curious then.)
Curious as it might, Lecan didn't think much of it when he heard it the first time.
But now, there's something bothering him about it. Something odd.
Lecan kept thinking just what it about for a while, but he couldn't recall.
"Lecan-dono. What's the matter?"
"Hm? Nah, it's nothing. Over here."
Lecan started walking in strides while referencing the information he got from <Graph Make (Coznitt)>.
This <Coznitt> magic is pretty much tailor-made for dungeon explorations. It makes the outline of a floor get projected in your head, and even displays magic beasts' locations.
<Life Detection> which Lecan mastered in his former world can tell him magic beasts' locations as well, but it has a range limit, and due to its inherent trait of showing how large or small a presence is depending on its mana pool, <Coznitt> is overwhelmingly handier if your goal is to find where and how many magic beasts are there.
"Alright, here it is. We're going in."
"Just to be sure, there's no adventurers fighting inside, is there?"
"Only a magic beast and nothing else."
<Life Detection> tells him there's one magic beast inside the room. No human.
So many things irritated him on the way to this point.
It's been that way since they departed Vouka. Lecan wanted to run at maximum speed, but Arios wouldn't even make the effort running above a certain speed. And he even went and demanded to stay in inns instead of camping out. Lecan had no choice but to match Arios's pace.
They asked the guard where the dungeon was when they arrived at this town.
The guard gave them a map. Lecan and Arios got in through the north gate, but as there were entry-restricted areas along the way to the dungeon, they had to take a little detour.
The guard told them that they needed a permit to enter the dungeon. Which you can purchase at the information desk, a stone building situated right in front of the dungeon.
So off they went to the row of buildings where they could buy it. It took them a really long time. And then he was at a loss for words as he stood before the majesty of Dungeon Tsubolt.
Lecan has seen dungeons with big structures.
He's seen dungeons with big entrances.
But he's never seen a dungeon entrance with so many people stuffing it up like this.
A great number of people are going out too.
A row of stone buildings have been built around the dungeon to form a circle, one will naturally reach the dungeon's entrance by tracing the pauses between those buildings.
But there's three lines of people going toward that entrance. With guards checking the permit things stationed in three spots. Those who cannot show their permit gets immediately expelled out of the lines.
They bought two permits at the information desk. There were one day permits and permanent permits available for purchase, naturally they bought the permanent ones. Each costs five big silver coins, crazily enough. Lecan got laughed off when he asked if this was a special day seeing there were so many adventurers going in the dungeon. It's late in the afternoon so there's actually fewer entrants than usual, they said. It's hard to believe that this crowd will be multiple times larger in the morning.
Lecan and Arios went to a referred inn in a corner of the row of buildings, but since it wasn't to their liking, they looked for one themselves.
They stayed there overnight, and then they could finally enter the dungeon the morning after.
As they were told yesterday, they had to stand in a line of unbelievable amount of people, but the flow wasn't too bad cause they just had to show the permit.
Once they were inside the dungeon, many adventurers recited a spell that warped them to the floors below.
"<Graph Make (Coznitt)."
Lecan checked the stairway's location with <Coznitt> and walked on ahead toward it. Arios followed after him.
The stairway was surprisingly long.
There was no stairway in between dungeon floors in his former world.
Dungeon Golbul's stairways were only as long as a three-story building.
Dungeon Ninae's stairways have differing lengths depending on the floors, but on average, they shouldn't be even twice as long as Golbul's.
But the stairway they're walking on right now is several times longer than Dungeon Golbul's. It can't be that all the stairways are this long, can it.
They finally got to floor 1.
Coming into the passage from the stairway was another surprise to Lecan.
Blips of people and magic beasts shown by <Life Detection> are spread apart far and away, even his ability is unable to completely map everything in the floor.
The rough sketch of floor 1 shown by <Coznitt> is just vast.
A rough estimate pegs the number of rooms to around 200.
About 2/3 of those have magic beasts inside.
There's a lot of adventurers too. There must be hundreds of them, Lecan won't even bother counting.
Luckily, a room with a stairway is relatively close by. And no one inside right now.
Lecan ran off toward that room.
"Why are we running?"
Lecan ignored Arios's inquiry as they arrived at the room.
The entrance to the room is covered in a thin hazy grey fog, you can't see the inside.
Lecan stepped into the room.
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
A lone magic beast stood there.
White Spectre (Zagg).
Lecan has had experiences fighting Zagg twice.
The first time was at Gasko village, when he was on his way to Vouka.
Some people asked him to defeat a White Spectre that spawned near that village.
The Zagg that time was about as tall as Lecan, but wider.
The second one was on a relatively shallow floor in Dungeon Golbul. That Zagg was about as tall as Lecan too.
The Zagg in front of him right now is also about as tall as him, but only slightly wider.
Yet this is supposedly a Giant Variant. How come? Because this room has a stairway that leads below. The entrance to that stairway is covered in a grey fog as well, but this is one of the two rooms with stairways that Lecan's <Coznitt> showed. Whence a stairway is inside a room, a Giant Variant should be in there as well.
Furthermore, the blue dot of the magic beast in this room shone the brightest in his <Life Detection>. As <Life Detection> dots' brightness correlates to the amount of mana an individual has, it doesn't always indicate their fighting prowess, but most of the stronger magic beasts do have lots of mana. In magic beasts' case, life force and mana pool are probably closely linked. Dungeon Golbul's boss couldn't use magic yet its blue dot shone bright.
Meaning, the magic beasts in other rooms would be smaller than this.
How its whole body is covered in a worn out rag-like cloth including its face and fingertips, hollow holes where its eyes should be as well as its fake nose and mouth are exactly like the Zagg he saw before.
The only difference is a short sword seemingly made of iron it's holding in its right hand.
Quite some time elapsed since Lecan and Arios went in the room before the magic beast turned toward them. Despite its lack of eyeballs, you could tell it has just now noticed the two. Then it started ploddingly inching toward them.
(It's slow as heck.)
(Full of openings too.)
As the magic beast finally arrived before Lecan, it slowly raised its sword overhead before swinging it down.
Lecan leaped backward dodging the attack.
The magic beast very slowly turned toward where Lecan went and did the same routine with its sword.
Lecan beheaded the magic beast.
Arios yelped lightly.
Although it's not like they made an arrangement beforehand, it was their first fight in this dungeon and all, so Arios thought of taking their time observing its attacks, but then Lecan just went and decapitated it, prompting Arios's involuntary yelp.
As a matter of fact, Lecan actually thought of the same thing as well, but he just couldn't put up with how slow it was.
"Hm? The fog's still there."
He looked at the stairway's entrance to brush it off.
The entrance to the stairway leading below is still covered in a grey fog like before.
They went inside and got greeted by a stairway.
Oh right, supposedly you can get in these stairways without defeating the magic beast.
The two climbed down the stairs.