Chapter 31: The interior of the island, scouting, this is serious stuff.
With just one week remaining until the large-scale investigation begins, we decided to go and scout deeper on the island. Since we had always hunted around the outskirts, this was our first time venturing to the inner area. Somehow, it seems that both the plant life and resident monsters will change after people cross a certain line. Because the monsters somehow become stronger after that point the exploration didn’t seem to progress as quickly. Apparently, if I supply information about new areas to the guild, it’s said that I will get a reward. Although it’s necessary to confirm with another adventurer, I vaguely overheard that a decent amount of money could be earned.
“Because of that, we’ll start battles along the way as little as possible. Since we’re following the route already recorded on the map, we shouldn’t be attacked by powerful enemies suddenly. Although, don’t be careless, since the map might not always be right.” (Tsuchio)
I told Ruu and the girls about the plan right as we were at the entrance to the forest.
Depending on if information is available which monsters have territories or not would strongly affect the chance of survival. If someone wanted to go deeper, then having more adventurers present was also a better choice. Dying while scouting would be meaningless, so I thought that if it became dangerous we must retreat quickly. If we’re still able to move on, then it’s a yellow signal; if we have to halt then it’s a red signal. That was the mountain’s rules? (Tl note: Can´t find these rules) (PR: Not sure what that expression means…)
"Well then, ready to go?" (Tsuchio)
The monsters which were already confirmed are dragonflies, centipedes, and small dragons. Probably, I suspect that there’ll be two or three other kinds more. It’s okay to break up the scouting into several trips, so let’s go explore it thoroughly ‘till we’ve collected all the information that’s out there.
We ran through the entire route that passed through the outer part of the forest. Because the trail was already inspected and verified a long time ago there weren’t many obstacles. It was a path with few trees where Ruu could fly easily.
And then, we were off! I rode on Rin and we advanced quickly. Since the beetles kept following us everywhere we defeated them quickly, while shaking off all the others and continued advancing. It took about two hours until we arrived at the boundary line which separated the inner and outer parts of the island. Yep, now’s the best time.
Since this was the first time we came to this region, we were greeted with new scenery. The vegetation began to differ a bit. Really, the outer part of the forest felt like a normal forest in the tropics, but at some invisible point along the boundary line a lot of fern-like plants started popping up. It didn’t change suddenly, it was just that the number of pteridophytes gradually increased. Well then… shall we go?
“Everyone, brace yourselves. There’s a high possibility of monsters about which don’t have any information. For now, evade all attacks.” (Tsuchio)
What attribute, what kind of magic, and what kind of abilities do they have. Unless I was able to know it beforehand, I was simply scared to receive any attack.
This time Ruu was the one who took the lead and we advanced over the boundary line. The air changed a bit as we went over the line. Muu, it was an unpleasant feeling….
While having Rin investigate the area, we advanced carefully. During the time we were walking slowly, Rin informed us of approaching enemies. Their number was ten and the possibility of them being that small dragon-kind was high. From the talk that I had overheard, their paralyzing breath and cooperative attacks seem to be dangerous.
"Rin, please corral the enemy's movements with magic. Go scatter magic right and left, so that they’ll gather in front of Ruu." (Tsuchio)
I re-positioned onto Ruu and shared my magic with her. First of all, let's reduce their numbers with a blow.
From between the trees, I saw the monsters which were intercepting and approaching us. They looked like those raptors from Monster Hunter. (Tl note: http://monsterhunter.wikia.com/wiki/Velociprey that's how the monster looks like) Although it looked like they could maneuver so that they wouldn’t be easily bunched up… it won’t work against Ruu!
“Lime, cling to us!" (Tsuchio)
"...!" Purupuru! (Lime)
After Lime attached herself to Ruu´s tail, she changed to a round shape. Now then, let’s charge!
"Ruu, go!" (Tsuchio)
Ruu spread her wings and took to the air while avoiding trees with a low-altitude flight path. After the distance was quickly covered, she mowed down the monsters with force. I watched as the ones who were far away started expanding their chests. Just like that, Ruu mowed them down with her wings again. At the same time, Lime who was clinging to the grappler wyvern’s tail transformed into a hammer and smashed the monsters away.
As she was trampling down the raptors, Rin ran around the area at high speed. The monsters who stood back up earned a kick from the unicorn’s hind legs.
The rest of the raptors who were still standing attacked with their sharp claws and fangs. Receiving their assaults on her arms and shoulders which had particularly dense scales, Ruu performed a throwing counter with her fists and tail. After a short while, the raptors were all annihilated.
Fuuh, even though we didn’t use all of our strength, we still had to draw out 80 percent of it, eh. Indeed, at this pace, we can’t fight for a long time…. Well, I learned the abilities of those raptors now. The thing on my mind is the territory around here, I didn’t know if I should try fighting against other monsters yet, right? To be honest, it was hard, but I didn’t have a choice not to do so.
Continuing, I stripped the hide, fangs, and claws off the raptors. They should sell for a high price. They’re a monster from a still-untouched land, after all.
After feeling Lime the leftovers, we advanced further. I wrote on the map in simple fashion, what kinds of topography there were or anything which would reasonably be a landmark. Although, since I had never made something like this before, I couldn’t record it well... But I thought it’s better than nothing, right?
After walking for about 10 minutes, a Bubububu-like sound could be heard from far away. A huge dragonfly was flying there. There was only one of them, but its body was considerably huge. If bitten by that jaw, even Ruu would be in danger. Truly, the vitality of that insect appears to be high and its mandibles seemed really strong, it’ll be a very troublesome opponent. Well, even if I said such things it couldn’t be helped, right? Even though it’s just one, I don’t think that this will be easier than the earlier guys.
The wings of the approaching dragonfly shook unnaturally and as soon as I realized it, a blade of wind flew past. As I crossed my arms in front of me and blocked it with my blade in the blink of an eye the monster got closer. Crap, although it didn’t attack Rin or the others, it’s painful that it approached to this extent.
Guwa! After opening its mouth widely, it quickly snapped its jaws down. As I drew myself back to the limit, pulling my shoulder, I squeezed its head with my arms. When the vibrating wings touched Ruu’s skin, Pishi! It cut and blood started to ooze out. I realized I must kill it quickly.
Ruu caught its head as if she was wrapped up in its compound eyes and killed it in one go. Even though its head was crushed, the dragonfly still ran wild for a short time until it was stabbed in the abdomen by Lime many times, before finally dying.
"Ruu, is your wound all right?" (Tsuchio)
So there’s no problem, eh. The wound was not that deep after all. I wondered if the bleeding would quickly stop. I could fight like this because I had Ruu, all considered. The other adventurers wouldn’t be able to do the same as us, right? The fact that the dragonfly was big, that alone was already a threat. Since I still didn’t see whether magic was effective or not, I will have Rin take down the next one.
After peeling off the dragonfly’s shell and wings, we advanced deeper into the forest. Sometime later, Rin felt monsters again. A loud bakibakibakibaki! sound followed. I heard noises that sounded like trees were being knocked down. Before long, a four legged monster with strangely sharp and long horns rushed towards us while mowing down trees. Wai, this was dangerous!!
As Ruu took off in a hurry, the monster passed right under us. Rin also floated in the sky and avoided it, while Lime hung from Ruu’s tail.
The monster below us dug furrows in the ground as it stopped. After angrily tearing up the ground some more with its feet, the rhinoceros-looking monster charged at us a second time. Well, since we were flying, it would not hit us. It was just stomping around below us. Now, what to do, as expected it wasn’t possible to stop it from above. Yep, we should do a frontal attack, then.
After carrying Lime on my back, I let Ruu make a landing. Now then, timing’s important.
"Ruu, though it will tickle slightly, please endure it." (Tsuchio)
“Guru? Guuuuuu!!!???” (Ruu)
As I shared magic with her, Ruu began to shake suddenly. Eh, we already did this previously, right?! Though this was the first time we’re doing it during battle.
"Cho, Ruu are you okay?! Somehow your breathing is rough!" (Tsuchio)
Entirely okay, huh, she was rather full of fighting spirit. This did not seem to cause any problem at all.
Looking at us after we came down, the rhinoceros came charging towards us with the intense power of its accumulated momentum. Ruu’s and my sight were unified, it felt like time stretched out. Wait for it, wait for it, don't rush it...now!
I made Ruu bend her body down, swing her tail low right in front of the monster, and sweep the monster’s legs. Suddenly, it fell down on its knees and that monster pierced the ground with its horn. It apparently stuck quite deep, almost all of it was buried below ground. Oh dear, it’s pointed straight up. (TLC: just imagine rhinoceros with upper half of it’s body buried in the ground)
"...What do we do, with this?" (Tsuchio)
Why don't I let Lime kill it? Or Rin. Well, anything’s fine.
"Okay then, Lime you got it." (Tsuchio)
Tentatively, I had Ruu hang out beside it because it was possible that it would rampage. Lime approached it in a happy trot and *stab* thrust her arm into its neck. She seemed to kill it in one blow because the monster slumped down wearily and weakly. Wonderful, Lime seemed to kill it without letting it suffer.
“This is, though we already beat it up, it still requires a lot more effort, eh….” (Tsuchio)
First of all, I wanted to harvest the hide, though I also wanted to take its horn ….. But it’s too big, right? It’s not a size which can readily be carried about. Well maybe I could give it to Lime.
After peeling off the hide from around the body, I fed the monster meat to Rin and Ruu, then gave the rest to Lime. Since it’s such a big size, it seemed it would take some time to digest, so let’s get some rest.
After leaning against a tree and drinking water, I took the map out to do the mapping. Though there were no conspicuous landmarks in particular around here, I remembered how we had advanced. It was roughly around here, right, as I recorded the route which we already walked, when suddenly Rin shot a 【Thunder Spear】 at me!
"Uwo!? What’s with you, Rin!" (Tsuchio)
I lowered my head in a hurry and avoided it, but then Ruu struck at me this time! Or so, that’s what I thought, however Ruu’s aim hit higher on the tree which I was leaning on. Over there, there was a huge centipede impaled onto the tree with a 【Thunder Spear】, and Ruu’s fist had crushed that thing’s head. Aah possibly, was that centipede right behind me? Again, there was no way for me to have been able to avoid Rin’s magic. From the start, her aim was that centipede targeting me. Uwa, Scary! I was scared just imagining it.
"Th, thank you Rin. You saved me..." (Tsuchio)
"That’s really true y’know.... Ruu thank you too." (Tsuchio)
I got scolded by Rin like, ‘Who is the one who lost his focus??’ I didn’t have any words to respond.
"...!?" Purupuru!? Byun! (Lime)
Lime jumped at me and touched all over my body. ‘Were you injured anywhere?!’ With such an impression, I could feel a bit of something bloodcurdling. It felt like she was gradually becoming overprotective, or rather she had become a worrywort.
While dyeing her magic black, and with eerie, swaying movements along an unpredictable course, Lime approached the corpse of the centipede. After she turned it over and threw it to the ground, she stabbed it repeatedly in its abdomen. That appearance, combined with her black magic, made it seem like a certain kindergartner who was playing house and venting her anger towards a rabbit. (PR: This may be a reference to Moeko Sakurada from the Crayon Shin-Chan manga. All Praise Google-Sensei~) Considering the fact that she turned it over so that the top shell wouldn’t get damaged, more or less I could tell that Lime was caring about me for the time being.
After she beat the hell out of it, it seemed it became somewhat of a pleasant diversion for her. With the shell being torn off at the end, Lime’s corpse bullying concluded. For some reason, the way she tore off the last piece of the shell was one level crueler, eh. If you replaced it with a human…. I thought it felt like a skin got torn off.
"..." Purupuru (Lime)
Lime offered me the centipede’s shell. Though it’s quite huge, it’s not a size which we wouldn’t be able to carry. With this, we already confirmed the monsters that were already well-known. Afterwards, there was only a need to find any unconfirmed monsters. Maybe we would have to go all out, eh.
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"Go, good evening..." (Tsuchio)
"Aa, tamer-san. You’ve returned quite late. Was there something of concern?" (Guild receptionist)
“It’s nothing, I went to the inner zone of the forest a little..." (Tsuchio)
"Ee!? The depths of the forest… by only yourself!?" (Guild receptionist)
"No, together with my familiars. Thus, because I encountered various monsters, I want to offer some information..." (Tsuchio)
"I, I see! First of all, please tell me the characteristics of the monsters which you encountered." (Guild receptionist)
"Emm, first, a small dragon kind. It features are paralysis breath and a cooperative attack with others of its kin. Next is a huge dragonfly and centipede. The dragonfly shoots a 【Wind Blade】 and although the centipede is huge, it is only superior with its stealth and sneaking skills. When I noticed it, it was right behind me and I was about to nearly die...”
"Emm, those are monsters that we already have information regarding, ehh." (Guild receptionist)
"Well, actually, the truth is that the real information starts from here. Well then, there are four-legged monsters with long, sharp horns on their heads. Though they only use charge attacks, they are considerably strong. When you make it topple, it is easy to defeat. After them, was a fight with a dragon class, which had a strong hind legs, short forelegs, and sharp fangs. (PR: T-Rex?) Although their attack was considerably strong, it was simply repetitive, so with the right timing it’s easy to avoid. Well even so, it is still pretty strong. The last one, monsters of an insect-human type appearing at the outer part of the island, along with a strengthening-type that appears too, eh. Physical strength, weapons, cooperation, they are strengthened in every way...Well, if it’s around that place then it must have a low level . ...I said it in one go though, are you okay?" (Tsuchio)
"Eh!? Ye, yes! I have taken notes perfectly!" (Guild receptionist)
Aa, thank goodness. Because I kept talking one-sidedly, I was worried whether or not she could capture it all.
"Since the time I fought against the horned monster, the biting dragon, and strengthened beetle was short, I still haven’t collected much information on them. I will take a rest tomorrow and I will face them again the day after tomorrow, and at that time, I’ll give you detailed information again." (Tsuchio)
"Is, is that so. Emm, I can't pay you if the amount of information on the monsters isn't validated yet, so you will get it later..." (Guild receptionist)
"Aa, it's no problem then. Aah, because I'll return in 3 weeks, please wait until that time." (Tsuchio)
"I , I understood." (Guild receptionist)
"Then, huwaa...sleepy.” (Tsuchio)
For now, since I have already finished the things I have to do, let’s go to sleep quickly. Because Ruu and crew were stabled at the inn first, I am already tired out….