Story 2-5 『Guiding Two Heroes』
A few hours after looking for and catching up to Umahara and Minamoto, we made it to the 20th floor.
I’d say that everything has gone well so far. We encounter a Wight White Lancer.
The Wight is the corpse of a demon that has bleached white bones. As its name suggests, it carries a spear.
Though it has a somewhat higher status, of all its attacks the main one that is troublesome is its『Poison』effect.
When it comes to the poison status effect, it is necessary to use an antidote to cure it.
Minamoto who was hit by it is currently being treated. Because she was fatigued and didn’t evade its attack in time, she was struck by the spear during an attack.
“Hey, Minamoto-san. Please drink this.”
Hayase passed Minamoto some『Yanu Leaf』, an antidote. She takes it and hurriedly drinks it.
Her complexion quickly improved. Apparently, the effects of the poison were neutralized.
Tamaki was the one to respond to the praise. Behind them, Umahara put on a dissatisfied expression.
Come on, this fellow….
“Hayase-san read a large amount of medical documents at the royal palace, so she doesn’t make mistakes with amounts in her treatments. Therefore, we can fight without worrying about status effects!”
Tamaki snapped her fingers and took a pose. In high spirits, aren’t you? [TN: He is sort of belittling her mentally]
However, Hayase’s value seems to continue increasing.
The medical knowledge in this world is quite lacking and still developing. Though there are physical and magical strength recovery potions, there are many potions for other conditions that haven’t been perfected.
For example, the potency of that antidote–『Yanu Leaf』. It will have negative effects on your health if you take more than you need, such is the risk.
Therefore, you can only take as much as you need at the time.
“Is that so? Hayase’s talent is quite indispensable for this party.”
After being praised by me, Hayase seemed to shine. Her behavior, I’m definitely not accustomed to it.
“Is Minamoto already alright?”
“Yeah, I’m okay.”
She stands up and moves her body. After stretching, it was obvious the treatment worked.
“It would be good to drink this potion just in case. Oi, here.”
I throw a test tube-like container carrying a potion to Minamoto. She caught it with both hands.
“Because you are a guard….. Don’t expect a thanks.”
Saying that much, Minamoto begins to walk away.
“Ah, oi! …… Good grief….. Tamaki, Hayase, let’s go. Let’s not split up.”
Hayase quickly stands up and gathers the luggage. There was no response from Tamaki because she had already caught up to Umahara.
Hayase and the two others smoothly ordered into a line like troops, Minamoto in the front, Umahara and Tamaki in the middle, Hayase and I in the rear.
Watching Minamoto, I maintained a distance from her and was talked to.
“Why did Yuji become an adventurer? Though I’m an adventurer, I am useless at fighting them…..”
“Well. There’s no special reason. Since my parents did this…. I sort of did the same.”
“I-isn’t such a simple reason scary?”
“I had no talent for it but it couldn’t be helped. It stopped being so bad when I became familiar with it…. Perhaps, is Hayase afraid?”
She looks at me with eyes that seem to burst with tears at any moment and her body shakes.
Bullseye. I mean, I understand.
“….. that’s it. I don’t think I have the power to fight like you guys. I’m just a hindrance to everyone…. When we get attacked I feel like I’m about to die….. Dying is…… it is scary.”
Dying is scary.
It is the same for everyone.
I’m also afraid. Although I can revive, every time I do my mind becomes cloudy and it is painful to see that strange woman in my dream.
This power might also have its limits and I might not revive. There are so many things I don’t know.
However, nothing will change if I am afraid. I know this firsthand.
“N-no good. Even though I’m a hero I’m weak like this…. I’m sorry, please forget I said anything.”
“I don’t think that.”
I put my hand on Hayate’s head and patted it with a *pon pon*.
“Everyone starts like that. We are all afraid. It can’t be helped but to feel those things. Because we are alive.”
“….. Is….. that so?”
“Ah, Hayase only needs to put in some effort. Though it might seem cheap, your effort won’t be betrayed. Continue on at your own pace. Like that, you will surely become a splendid hero.”
She thinks of something and rubs her eyes with her robe. After, when looking up, the atmosphere around her changed from a while ago.
“Thank you. Somehow, I feel courage.”
“It is because of Yuji-san’s help. Therefore, um….”
Her fingers suddenly begin to fidget around. She clenches her hand and grabs mine.
“Yuji….. are you seeing anyone?”
Shuri’s smiling face crossed my mind. Though I’m not sure if our relationship counts, it would be embarrassing to say yes.
“T-then when I become a hero… we—“
“Increasingly lovey-dovey, aren’t you guys?!”
Taking advantage of the situation, Tamaki broke away from Umahara’s restraint and came over.
To state her intention of participating in our conversation, she used a loud voice.
“H-h-huh!? Tamaki-san, what are you saying!! I wasn’t saying anything in particular like that!!”
Hayase waved her hands and shook her head, blushing deeply.
I’m bad, though I’m not a thickheaded protagonist I didn’t realize.
“……. Oi, Yuji-san? How does it feel to be liked by a cute girl?”
She uses her elbow to nudge Hayase’s melons. This person…. Seriously.
“It’s good that Yuji-san is treating Hayase-san kindly…. Maybe I’ll also aim for Yuji-san~.”
Tamaki crosses her arms to show off.
This is entirely unpleasant.
I understand her trick, there’s no goodwill to me at all. My heart isn’t throbbing, either.
It’s all because something bad might happen to you while we’re here.
“……… Oi, guard.”
………. Ah, it came.
However, it was good timing. The location is good.
Let’s use this guy’s emotions.
“Get away from Tamaki, I dislike it.”
Umahara’s eyes look like peep-holes. Is love blind?
“Ah, yeah. That’s fine.”
“So you get it. Hurry up then.”
“However, you do so as well.”
Umahara glares at me like a demon. Though in the past I would have shrunk back from this, I’m not even afraid of the real thing now.
“Think back. Tamaki’s expression when she was talking with you compared to when she was talking with us.”
“Hah? She seems to be fine with me no matter what you think. Right, Tamaki?”
Tamaki forced a smile and looked around, averting her eyes.
Understanding her meaning, Umahara’s face became red with anger.
He directed his anger towards me. Well, to him it seems like I took Tamaki away from him. A very unjust and selfish interpretation.
An explosive situation.
“Oi! The stairs room was found! It is a monster house!”
“““Tsu!?””” [TN: All three let out a sound like being stabbed.]
One of the things I didn’t want to hear from these people.
Though all of us showed our reactions to it, Umahara recovered first.
“Just you wait, Tamaki! I’ll knock all of them down!”
“Ah, wait a moment!?”
Ignoring Tamaki’s restraint, Umahara ran off. Minamoto follows.
He probably just wants to show off a good side to her. I understand this guy well, guys like him don’t make things easy.
“You two wait here! I’ll protect them!”
“No! There won’t be any room for me to protect Hayase while fighting in a monster house. You play an important role in treating our wounds. Wait here.”
“Tamaki, defend Hayase. You’ll be fine if it is just here.”
I confirm they’ll stay and then run after him.
I’ll be troubled if Tamaki and Hayase die. And not because I’m getting paid.
Since they were running, I picked up my speed; Minamoto and Umahara stopped in front of the door.
Umahara’s shoulders were moving up and down, he must have also just arrived.
“I’ve seen this pattern. If my memory is correct, it is probably the same as that time.”
What Minamoto says is correct.
This magic circle is the same as the one at the monster house in【Rigal’s Den】.
Not just anyone can draw one.
Not unless you were the lord of a dungeon, for example.
“What do we do? Go in?”
“Of course. Nothing in a monster house is scary if you understand it beforehand!”
Umahara stands by with magic. Minamoto pulls out her sword.
“Oi, you. Don’t interfere. Help only if you think it is dangerous.”
Umahara warns me.
“I got it. Tamaki is watching, so struggle your best to show off.”
“Tch……! Minamoto, let’s go!”
“I got it. You don’t need to tell me again.”
As the door is opening Umahara is enthusiastic.
Then, they stiffened.
It is very different than what they expected.
Humans are weak to sudden, unanticipated events.
Haste, assessment of the situation, doubt.
Those will affect your ability to take action.
Therefore, I pushed them into the room.
Now, they are in the room.
Within killing range of the red demon.
There isn’t a lot of demons.
“——Kill them, Leadred.”
At my instruction, the horned demon gives a wicked smile.
She swings her large sword.