The Female Knights’ Dignity
It was noon on the sixth day since leaving the Royal Capital when the group, lead by Fiana, arrived at the base of the mountain that had the abandoned mithril mine. Guided by Frederica, Fiana and her headed to the village head’s house along with a single male knight and adventurer.
With their numbers, it would have been difficult to rest inside the small village, so everyone else prepared camp outside of the village.
A while later, Fiana and the other three returned and started to help set up tents after finishing their discussions with the villagers. By the time that they were all there helping out, the sun had just began to sink down.
Several villagers came bringing meat and alcohol around the time the expedition group had finished setting up camp. They did this as a spirit raiser for the upcoming monster subjugation.
Accepting it along with offering her gratitude, Fiana decided to cook the meat and share the alcohol with everyone.
Although monster subjugations came with their share of danger, they were relaxed due to arriving at their destination.
Being able to drink alcohol for the first time in a while, Frederica’s mood improved after she drank quite an amount of it.
However, feeling as though something was about to happen, Fiana tilted her head to the side.
This was the intuition that belonged to the long lived elves, and although it was sensitive, it was not infallible.
Taking it to be her imagination, Fiana didn’t pay it much attention and went back to drinking her small amount of alcohol.
Fiana, who’d been drinking the small amount so as to not intoxicate herself, let out a wild voice.
Suddenly hearing their commander’s voice, everyone looked towards Fiana.
“P-p-please don’t touch them!”
Visibly amused, Satia stroked Fiana’s characteristic long ears with her small fingers.
Her ears, tinged red due to the alcohol’s influence, twitched as though attempting to escape Satia’s fingers.
The female commander writhed like she was being tickled. It might have been due to the alcohol’s influence, but rather than watching on with cheeky smiles, the men all saw her movements as somewhat enticing and averted their gazes.
“Mou… are elf ears that interesting to you, Satia-san?”
“… No, yours tremble, they look sensitive…”
Setting aside the alcohol’s influence, her white cheeks dyed red from embarrassment.
Seeing Satia’s hands start moving towards her ears once again, Fiana stood up to escape.
“I-I’m going to turn in early.”
“… Me too, then.”
In a sense, Satia was greedy.
Even with her poor social standing, she learned magic and knowledge important for adventuring from senior adventurers for Alfred’s sake despite being his slave.
For her master’s sake, she learned how to cook and how to fight so that she wouldn’t drag him down. Then—so that she could satisfy her Goshujin-sama, she tried to improve her understanding of sensual pleasures.
Seeing Satia stand up to follow her, Fiana’s cheeks cramped.
When she frantically looked towards Frederica for help—
“That girl’s going to follow you until she’s satisfied!”
Frederica offhandedly shot her down. She went back to her alcohol after that.
As for the men… given their pink-filled minds and hopes, they wound up looking back and forth between Fiana and Satia.
They’d been travelling for a week, so they were rather backed up. There was no helping the matter, but even so, Fiana cursed about it in her mind.
“W-well then… shall we both go to bed?”
Now that she was unable to escape the situation after she herself said it, Fiana left the area with Satia accompanying her.
Seeing the men gaze after them as they left, Alfira scowled at them. As for Frederica, she looked as though she didn’t care at all.
“W-well… let’s drink our fill and get some sleep!”
After enjoying themselves all the way till the moon was high in the sky, the alcohol helped everyone fall into a deep sleep.
On the morning of the next day, Fiana and the rest woke up even earlier than the village’s elders would and put their tents away, as well as the remnants of the previous night’s enjoyment, before starting to ascend the mountain.
Now having little traveling through it, the mountain trail was overgrown with grass and weeds, taxing their stamina despite them simply passing through.
Frederica and Satia were riding on a single horse, guiding everyone up the mountain.
The horse was borrowed from one of the male knights. This was done because it was judged that it would be safer having the two who knew the way lead them.
“How much longer will it take?”
“I think we’ll arrive there by noon.”
The knight that was walking together with the adventurers asked Frederica.
Unlike the comparatively lightly dressed adventurers, he was dressed in full plate armor, causing this path to be extraordinarily taxing on him.
He’d trained for marching as well, but it wasn’t as though he had unlimited stamina.
When she responded to his question straightforwardly, he just continued in silence.
As Frederica had said, they arrived the entrance to the abandoned cave at around the same time that the sun was straight up in the sky.
Everyone’s expressions tensed. Now was the real deal. Seeing them look completely different from how they were during the previous night’s festivities, Frederica looked over them with cold eyes.
“Now then, the adventurers will begin preparing camp. The rest of us will look around.”
Once they finished unloading their baggage near the abandoned mine’s entrance, Fiana began issuing orders. As for whether or not the investigation would drag on, everyone believed that it would.
This was due to Frederica’s testimony and due to looking at the map that the village head gave them. Since mithril was such a valuable magic metal, excavation had continued well past the point that collapses could occur so long as it could still be found, causing the mine to be rather expansive.
After the excavation continued for several more months, once it reached the point that not even traces of mithril could be found, the mine was abandoned.
Having been excavated that far, Fiana judged that it would take them upwards of a week to thoroughly examine the abandoned mine while being vigilant towards monsters.
The other knights and adventurers held the same view… rather, they expected that it would likely take even longer than that.
Following Fiana’s orders, the adventurers prepared the camp while the knights went to look around and scout the surrounding area. Frederica went around with the knights, with Satia stayed with the adventurers.
They wondered if they might be able to spot some kind of weakness or if they might be able to decrease their numbers by even a single person, but it wouldn’t go so simply.
As soon as the camping preparations were over, everyone gathered together to eat lunch. Their meal was comprised of dried meat and some herbs and mushrooms they picked up on the mountain trail.
“When you were investigating, was there anything that stood out?”
Sitting next to Satia, who was chewing jerky while absentmindedly staring into the flickering fire, Alfira asked her a question.
“… There’s a lot of dust—and it’s dark. It’s tiring.”
Taking the dried meat away from her mouth, she said only that much before going back to nibbling it once again.
Sensing that the girl’s attitude was as if she wasn’t interested in the abandoned mine’s investigation at all, Afira’s mouth cramped a little.
“I-is that so…”
Convincing herself that it was due to the girl only having bad memories of this place, she averted her gaze from Satia.
The same thing happened with Frederica.
Frederica was just lazily watching the fire.
The surrounding adventurers called towards her a few times, but she only gave them vague responses.
“We’ll be heading into the mine to start searching now… Frederica-san, Satia-san, will you two be alright?”
Wearing her light armor above her clothes that looked like pure white priest vestments and her long sword at her waist on the left side, Fiana asked them.
The two responded with a nod.
The knights and adventurers were all also preparing to begin the investigation. Among them was, of course, the only female other than Fiana, Alfira. Despite being a woman, she was equipped with hefty armor that covered her full body over her thick black clothing.
The other knights were also wearing full body armor like Alfira.
“… If there aren’t any problems, we’ll be going then.”
The investigation would be conducted with them split into two groups.
Fiana, Alfira, Satia, and half of the adventurers made up the first group.
Frederica, the male knights, and the rest of the adventurers made up the second group. As far as their fighting strength went, this was an even split. Also, due to the abandoned mine’s narrow passageways, them traveling in a large group would have been a problem.
It wouldn’t be a problem for as many as nineteen to pass through, but the passages were too narrow if it turned into a fight. Moreover, the opponent was a slime. There was no way they could use fire magic in the mine, so once they found the slime, they would have to lure it out towards the entrance.
With that being the case, it was easier for them to move about in smaller groups. Besides, if they fought as one large group, they wouldn’t be able to properly wield their swords.
And those are the reasons they split their group’s fighting potential in half.
For their capabilities, they had the commander, Fiana, the newcomer, Alfira, and three skilled male knights.
Also, as mages familiar with the mine, Frederica and Satia had been split up between the two groups.
“It’s so freaking dark and dusty in here… it’ll feel great when we get to go back outside.”
In front of Frederica, the male adventurers continued advancing inside while exchanging words with each other.
Two of the knights were in the lead, while the rest followed up in the rear. They took this formation so that they could protect the adventurers and Frederica.
This was because both the weight behind what a knight was and how skilled they were was clearly different from adventurers. Not something that aristocrats could simply throw money at to obtain, the title of ‘knight’ was earned through ability, experience, and an aptitude in magic.
Their capabilities far outstripped that of the adventurers. Even if Frederica was at a considerable level for an adventurer mage, she was only comparable to knights in her magical aptitude.
However, she fell far short when it came to swordplay. If she couldn’t bring one down in one hit from a long distance away, her being defeated once her opponent drew close was a foregone conclusion.
Surveying the knights as they diligently paid attention to their surroundings, even Frederica grew accustomed to walking around the mine to a certain extent. This was a place she’d been living in for around a month already, but Frederica had only been staying in that single spot where light shone down into the mine that whole time.
There, for almost a full month, she was violated each and every day.
She was even able to escape.
Like how she had left the abandoned mine to bathe, this wasn’t the first time. Cleansing her body at the lake located at the foot of the mountain with Satia, she would come back to this mine. No, rather than ‘come back’, it was probably more correct to say she was ‘returning home’.
Her head, her body, her mind, even her soul—it had all come to recognize this place, this dark, gloomy mine, as home.
Out of her life until now and from everything then on… was there anything else that would be able to give the extent of pleasure that that slime was able to?
The first time she left the mine, she thought that. She thought that, and realized.
Even if she ran away, Frederica would return to this mine. It would simply end up happening.
Even if she regained her pride as a mage or her pride as a human being—she would return to this mine and, once again, be ravished. No, she would return for the sake of being ravished. She was confident in that.
When she left the mine that first time and realized that fact, Frederica wept. She cried from her heart, and kept on crying—even as she cleansed her body so that she could once again receive the Black Ooze’s love.
“Frederica, are you alright?”
“Yeah, I’m alright~”
A man walking next to her spoke to her, but she just responded without thinking much about it at all.
It didn’t matter.
Frederica knew that the man was thinking of her. She could tell from the way he looked.
Even so, it didn’t matter.
Frederica had long since grown used to the stagnant, dusty air.
(Aah, I’m finally back.)
She thought that from the bottom of her heart.
Ever since her first time with the slime, this was the longest she had gone without its ravishing. Let alone the two days it had been, it was rare for her to even have half a day’s rest. Normally, she would be caressed throughout the day as well as after she fell asleep at night.
Always kept at a state of excitement, the woman’s womb throbbed, maintaining a state of being prepared to bear children.
Her womb violated, her eggs violated, she had birthed children. Her fear towards being impregnated by a monster had quickly faded away.
Frederica felt that, certainly, she was simply a monster with a human’s appearance. She loved a monster and would never be able to love a human again.
One of the knights stopped walking. Following his lead, Frederica and the other also stopped, surveying their surroundings.
They didn’t sense mana nor a presence, but the skilled knight still felt that something was there.
“—A monster that can camouflage itself?”
The knights drew their swords, causing the adventurers to follow suit and prepare themselves as well.
By the time Frederica began preparing her mana, the knights’ swords began to emit a bright light. Mana lights—mana blades that could cut through the slime’s soft body.
At the same moment, a slime about the size of a dog crawled out from behind the shade of a rock.
The knights held up their swords as though to intercept it. The slime slowly moved towards them—at that instant, another slime that was about the same size dropped down from the ceiling.
Two of the knights hastily avoided the slime. Now that their balance had been thrown off, more slimes showed themselves on the surrounding walls and aimed their tentacles toward them.
Even with that, the two knights cleared them out and straightened their stances. As the paralytic poison had been blocked by their armor as well, it wasn’t able to show its effectiveness.
“Tch, so many—!”
One of the knights cut away some of the viscous tentacles to capture a slime. When he raised his sword to swing, the slime used the chance to attack with its tentacle. However, it was repelled by the knight’s shield.
Thinking that he was about took it out, the knight took a blow from behind and was captured by the slime he thought he’d defeated.
The slime suddenly grew from about the size of a dog to being large enough to envelop the armored knight’s entire body.
Now that he’d been enveloped, it was impossible for him to defend against the liquids that made up the slime’s body. The paralytic poison-laced mucus made its way through the gaps in the knight’s armor, quickly disabling him.
His entire body was immersed in the viscous liquid, so he wasn’t able to breathe. Given how things were going, he would die of suffocation within the minute.
Another tentacle took that moment of carelessness to strike at another knight’s helmet, the paralytic poison penetrating onto the skin through its gap.
Unable to withstand the paralytic poison that had affected him so suddenly, the other knight fell to his knees.
At that moment, the man was squashed by a new slime that fell from the ceiling. Only one knight was left after Frederica’s attack caused the other two knights to fall into disarray. This second group had been driven into a corner.
They would be paralyzed just by having a tentacle touch them. Luckily, the adventurers weren’t wearing any heavy armor, so even them just cutting away the tentacles would cause drops of it to splash onto them, causing them to be paralyzed.
As a result, the only person who was safe was the knight, who stood a little ways away from Frederica.
He hadn’t been captured by a slime, but he didn’t have time to help out the adventurers that were quickly succumbing to the paralytic poison either.
He retreated in a way so as to not leave any openings for the tentacles to exploit, trying to somehow escape. This was the only thing filling the knight’s thoughts.
“Fufu… are they tasty? You know, that’s also how your father got bigger, right?”
Frederica lovingly caressed the slime that had captured the first knight.
The color of its mucous shining in the lantern’s faint light was a burnt brown. This dark brown-colored slime that looked dark even within the cave’s darkness—this was a slime that Frederica had birthed.
Seeing Frederica touch the slime like that, the knight looked at her like he was seeing something that didn’t make sense.
“Oi, mage—don’t you get that that thing’s a monster!”
Hearing him, Frederica glanced his way with a strange look in her eyes. Her gaze seemed to imply that she wondered what he was getting at.
“Yeah, it is.”
“What do you mean ‘yeah’—that’s our enemy!”
Like that, she responded casually, her head tilted to the side.
She wasn’t thinking along the lines of ‘because it’s a monster and I’m a human’. She was truly clueless what he’d meant.
“Why? Ah… come to think of it, us humans were trying to eradicate all monsters, weren’t we?”
Even while saying something like that, Frederica continued caressing the slime.
Her eyes contained hints of beauty and tenderness—the eyes of a mother.
“It’s alright. Mother here is your ally.”
“—So you were corrupted by the monsters? Pitiful.”
“Pitiful—? No, you’re wrong.”
Hearing the knight’s words, Frederica smiled, a smile that lit up her whole face.
“I’m blessed—extremely so.”