TL Note: Happy new year guys~
The next day.
We ate breakfast, and then we walked through the narrow path of the canyon again.
Shiva-san is leading without looking at a map, but if it was just me, I would definitely end up lost because of all the turns.
From what I heard, it’s because Shiva-san has used this same path plenty of times before as part of the training of fresh recruits. It’s definitely not the most accessible place, but with all the cliffs that could be climbed, it just might be perfect for training.
And speaking of geography, I noticed that the geography here in this area is sometimes weird. It’s probably the effect of Masaharu’s magic, but there are rock cliffs here that are actually perpendicular to the ground.
If it at least had some slope I’d understand, but I don’t think it’s natural for terrain to be that perpendicular. Geological formations are things that form after the accumulation of earth and sand after all. And then there are those places that form from hardened lava.
I’ve also heard that jewels and gold were reported to have been spotted here. It wasn’t a meagre amount either, and people would mine out the veins immediately after finding one, so there were quite a number of people searching for them here. But after most of them failed to find anything, they gave up. And the people who found some couldn’t make enough of a profit to make it worth the effort either.
We talked about things like that as we walked. And then Shiva-san said,
“We’re near the labyrinth. Undead roam in the area near the labyrinth, so get ready.” [Shiva]
As I said that, we walked. The path was at most just big enough for three people to walk side-by-side. There were plenty of places before where the road was wider, but this area we’re in right now feels eerily artificial.
“Well we’ve made it this far, I guess we can take a rest for a bit. This path’s connected to the execution grounds that became a labyrinth, so it’s being maintained.” [Remiri]
“I see, although it doesn’t seem to be a straight line.” [Ryouma]
The road’s being maintained, and yet it has so many turns.
“It’s a precaution against escapees, something to buy time in the one-in-a-million chance that a convict for death row manages to escape. For a similar reason, the road before here isn’t being maintained as it’s not part of the main road, so it’s quite hard to cross.” [Remiri]
I see… that makes sense. But right after Remiri-san finished talking, the smell of rotting flesh wafted to my nose.
“This rotting stench, could it be?” [Ryouma]
“Yep, it’s the undead. Most likely a zombie.” [Rheinbach]
“Good timing. I’ll go ahead and teach you how to deal with them.” [Shiva]
20 seconds passed, and a rotting corpse walking towards us entered our vision.
According to what I’ve investigated beforehand, the undead of this world like places with little or no sunlight, so they can usually be found is such places. But that doesn’t mean they can’t function under sunlight.
My impression of my first time seeing a zombie is that they’re disgusting. Their flesh is rotting; they stink… But unexpectedly, they can move quite fast.
I expected them to be disgusting, but I didn’t expect them to move that fast. Oh, but while I say they’re fast, they’re only really faster than my expectations, and are walking around the pace of an adult man. So it’s not like I’m feeling threatened or anything.
It’s just a bit different from the image I had in mind is all. I expected a zombie groaning as it walked one step at a time, very slowly. So it’s a bit unexpected that it’s actually walking normally.
“Well then, before all else, let’s go and confirm the property of the zombies. First––“ [Shiva]
Shiva-san ran to the zombie, and swung his halberd diagonally from his shoulder, cutting the zombie in two halves in one swing. After cutting it two more times, Shiva-san came back.
“Just now, I cut it without using any magic, but my attacks had no effect at all. And the zombie just regenerate, and start walking again.” [Shiva]
Exactly as Shiva-san had said, the cut zombie began to gather its remaining parts, and started putting itself back together.
“It’s not just zombies either. Other undead-type magical beasts can also regenerate. So beating them with only weapons is extremely inefficient. If you really need to beat them with just weapons, then it would be better to use a blunt weapon rather than a sharp one. As that would allow you to crush their bodies thoroughly rather than just cutting them to pieces. Lastly, there are also magical beasts that can’t be beaten with such methods, so it’s imperative to exercise caution.” [Shiva]
Around this time, the zombie finally finished regenerating, and has started walking towards again. Then suddenly, Shiva-san casted ‘Wind Cutter’ and cut off the Zombie from its waist. The zombie started to regenerate again, but it’s far slower this time around.
“You might’ve noticed it, but these magical beasts regenerate at a slower rate when attacked by magic compared to when they are attacked by weapons. This is said to be because of their dark attribute magic power being dispersed by the magic power of a different attribute. And the most effective magic are those under light attribute. Try hitting it with ‘Light Ball’ once it finishes regenerating.” [Shiva]
After some time, the zombie finished regenerating. Just as I was told to, I casted ‘Light Ball’.
“’Light Ball’” [Ryouma]
“a’ ,aa’ !” [Zombie]
A ball of light appeared on my chest, and in the next moment, it flew towards the zombie in a straight line, piercing through its chest. The zombie groaned in pain as a giant hole could be visibly seen on its chest. The flesh and the bones near the affected area were thoroughly extinguished.
“As can be observed, light magic is extremely effective against the undead. Even the elementary magic, ‘Light Ball’, can pierce through its body, extinguish it, and greatly weaken it. However, a single shot from ‘Light Ball’ isn’t sufficient. If you wish to kill it in one hit with only ‘Light Ball’, then you’ll have to target its head or chest. Any other place will require two or three shots.” [Shiva]
“I understand. I’m surprised to know though that ‘Light Ball’ could extinguish an undead’s body… I’ve heard that people who die become undead. If by chance I do die, my body won’t disappear when hit by ‘Light Ball’ will it?” [Ryouma]
“Right, your corpse won’t disappear from being hit by ‘Light Ball’. Only, it’s said that a change occurs once a body changes into an undead, but it’s not fully understood. Moreover, not all undead come from corpses. There are also those that just naturally appear.” [Shiva]
As I received that explanation, another zombie came. As I was about to fire another shot of magic at it, Remiri-san stopped me.
“This time I’ll show you how it’s done with intermediate magic.” [Remiri]
As she said that, she aimed her wand at the zombie, and chanted.
“ ‘Exorcism’ !” [Remiri]
A ball of light as big as a basketball appeared in front of her staff, and hit the zombie. But that ball didn’t pierce the zombie. Instead it wrapped it in its light. It was as if it was extinguishing the zombie.
“With this magic, it won’t matter where you hit. You’ll be able to kill them in one hit no matter what. It costs around 1,500 points of magic power though, so it’s a waste to use this kind of magic against zombies. If it’s just zombies, ‘Light Ball’ will do. Just use this when you really have to, or alternatively, you could use fire magic instead of light magic as that’s also effective.” [Remiri]
Like this I was able to study how to fight undead-types. And I was also able to practice by shooting at the zombies and skeletons that were roaming on the road.
As a result, I’ve learned ‘Exorcism’, and am now even able to clad my blade in ‘exorcism’, which was quite effective as the undead could be extinguished with a slash.
It’s a waste though, as although I’m able to kill three zombies with one cast, a single elementary magic, ‘Light Ball’, could kill a zombie in one hit… Ah, come to think of it, I wonder what would happen if I just used light attribute magic power instead of an actual magic?
As I thought that, I clad my sword in light attribute magic power, and slashed at an undead. Oh, hey, it worked. It’s not the same as ‘Exorcism’, but I think I can work with this.
After I finished my experiment, Shiva-san and Remiri-san were shocked and went, “What just happened!?” as they hurried over.
As we got closer to the labyrinth, more and more undead have been appearing, causing our pace to greatly slow down.
Also, the labyrinth that was once the execution grounds is apparently located at the center of an artificial bowl-shaped geographical formation. Right now, we’re on top of a hill where we can see the entrance to the execution grounds.
We can see a huge, ancient gate from afar that’s connected to a tall wall. The door on the right side of the gate is collapsed, so we can also see what’s inside the gate. There, we could see some iron bar windows and some buildings made out of stone. As well as an uncountable number of undead.
“That many is a little annoying.” [Remiri]
“Couldn’t you just make do somehow with consecutive casting of light magic?” [Rheinbach]
“I could also ask my slimes to help.” [Ryouma]
“We risk getting surrounded by entering through the gate, so let’s lure them here to the hill instead. It’ll also help once they clump up.” [Shiva]
After our short meeting, we decided to lure our opponents. Everyone else aside from me will be casting advanced magic, while me and my slimes will be cleaning up the remaining undead.
So I opened my ‘Dimension Home’, and called out my scavenger slimes, acid slimes, metal slimes, iron slims, and light slime. The slimes were itching to go.
The scavenger slimes and acid ones in particular were very excited. Apparently the dark magic power and the rotting meat of the zombies have turned them into quite the delicacy in front of the scavenger slimes. In a similar fashion, the acid slimes were also quite taken by the bones of the undead. I’m happy they’re full of spirit, but I’ll have to remind them to prioritize safety.
“Alright, let’s go! ‘Flare Bomb’!” [Rheinbach]
Taking my slimes with me, I neared the gate. And when I was around 700 meters away from it, Rheinbach-sama fired an intermediate fire spell. A ball of fire the size of a basketball was summoned at his spell, and it flew right between me and the gate, causing an explosion. The undead reacted to that booming sound, and the undead began to climb up the hill.
“They’re coming, let’s go! ‘Beam’ !!” [Remiri]
Immediately after Remiri-san’s chant, a beam of light fired towards the undead, extinguishing almost all in its path. Most were killed, but I couldn’t count how many in all.
But the undead wave doesn’t end there, and more of them came after the ones Remiri-san extinguished.
“Next is my turn. ‘Fire Storm’!” [Rheinbach]
At Rheinbach-sama’s spell, a whirlpool of fire was summoned, swallowing the crowd of undead that neared. That blazing whirlpool filled my vision, and I couldn’t count how many undead died at Rheinbach-sama’s magic.
But more undead came, and they too climbed the hill. But once they gathered, Shiva-san made his move.
“ ‘Storm Cutter’ “ [Shiva]
At that moment, a powerful tempest was summoned, and the undead were blown away. After a while, the undead came falling down from the sky as scattered pieces. Again, I couldn’t count how many were killed.
As I was thinking such things to myself, the undead began to climb again. And this time, it was Sebasu-san’s turn.
“ ‘Water Fall’ “
Sebasu-san raised his hand as he chanted that, and in the next moment, a giant ball of water that looked as if it contained all the water within a swimming pool appeared in the sky, floating.
In the next moment, that giant blob of water fell down to the cliff with a rumbling sound. The blob broke, and it washed away the zombies. The total number of zombies washed away… again: uncountable.
Ah… on top of all the zombies, they even killed the left wall that was fine just a while ago.
Aren’t these people a bit too strong? And speaking of Shiva-san… if he had used that ‘Storm Cutter’ of his in our previous match, I would have definitely lost. Saved by the rules I guess.
“You guys are amazing…” [Ryouma]
“Ryouma-sama, you’ll be able to do something like this in no time at all.” [Sebasu]
“Advanced magic packs a lot of heat, and can affect a huge area, but it also requires a lot of magic power and control. On top of that, it takes time to cast. It’s not something that can be casted consecutively. Save for advantageous situations like just now, it’s not something that could be easily cast.” [Shiva]
“That aside, it’s your and your slimes turn next, Ryouma-kun.” [Rheinbach]
“Do your best!” [Remiri]
Oops, I almost forgot!
“I’m going.” [Ryouma]
I had the light slime ride on my head, while I went down the cliff with the rest of the slimes. Before me were the undead who appeared to have not learned their lesson as they continued to climb the hill. The skeletons were at the front.
The iron slimes were the first to attack those skeletons.
Using the slope of the hill, the iron slimes rolled towards the skeleton, and then jumped for their chest. The skeletons received a direct hit! Those iron slimes that were basically lumps of iron scattered the skeletons, causing them to collapse. There were also other iron slimes that simply body slammed their foes, crushing bones and flesh alike.
With just this the undead could still regenerate, but at the same time, they were now defenseless. The undead that was now in the middle of regenerating was left unable to fight, so the scavenger slimes feasted on zombies and skeletons alike without any reserve.
But the slimes weren’t numerous enough to take on all the fallen undead, so some of the undead would still become able to fight them. During that time, the slimes would fight with the techniques we’ve trained, spitting their digestive liquids, melting the foes’ limbs, taking away their ability to fight, and clinging to the arms that their enemies use against them, and feasting on them.
Around that time, the metal slimes and the iron slimes neared the gate, and they started using the new fighting ability they have learned.
Lately, the iron and metal slimes have become even better at transforming. And the iron slimes are now able to transform from their wheel form into something thinner that resembles the blade of a katana almost immediately. Coupled with their weight and rotation, the sharpness of that form can cut its opponent apart.
They probably learned it since I kept turning them into a blade. From the outside, they look like a chakram when transformed. I tried it using against goblins once, and they were able to easily cut their necks and limbs off. It’s quite terrifying honestly.
As for the metal slimes, they rolled, and then they jumped. And having learned how to change even in mid-air, they transformed into a rod-shaped object with a sharp end. Following the force from their previous jump, they thrust themselves into their foes like a throwing spear.
They pierced into the chests of the zombies and the undead, stopping their movements, and leaving them wide open for the scavenger and acid slimes to feast on.
…At first, I thought to watch them quietly from behind, only to interfere when they’re in danger, but… I don’t think either me or my light slime need to make a move. I just realized this, but… These guys are actually peerless when it comes to zombies and skeletons! Well, that’s the way it is, so I guess I’ll just go to the front lines now.
I neared the gate as I ignored the slimes that were trampling all over the undead. There are still a lot of slimes even in this area, so there’s no danger of getting surrounded. At the same time though, there’re also still a number of enemies.
“A’ –“ [Zombie[
“ ‘Light Ball’ ‘Light Ball’ ‘Light Ball’” [Ryouma]
First, I fired off light balls toward the two zombies and one skeleton, headshotting them, and killing them. With a light slime on top of my head like this, we can fire light balls together, killing any undead that comes before us.
Speaking of which, with the light slime on my head like this, I’m able to feel it’s magic power. As such I’ve realized that although the magic casted has the same effect, the slime seems to use less magic power.
Thinking about it again, the wind slimes that I learned chantless casting from might’ve also been using less magic power… It’s just a hunch, but the slimes might actually be able to use magic more efficiently than humans. Remiri-san did also mention that it’s possible to become more efficient with magic through training, so it just might be possible.
I continued to kill one undead after another as I thought that to myself. When we finally finished killing everyone, no more undead came to attack us near the gate anymore.