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I left the Adventurer’s Guild and stretched.
I had finished with an important request and had been sitting in a chair for a long time, so I relaxed a little and enjoyed the feeling of freedom.
“Then let’s go home and have dinner.” (Rook)
As I started to walk, a group of horse-drawn carriages passed by on the main street.
They were not the kind of carriages that carry people, but rather luggage wagons.
It was the first time I had seen such a large group of carriages since it started snowing.
“What’s going on?” (Rook)
From the direction, the carriages came from outside the town.
Hmmm, I thought the passenger carriages were suspended in the winter because it becomes impossible for the carriages to pass through.
“Well, even if I think about it, I won’t know.” (Rook)
So, when I went back to the inn and ate dinner, I asked Mr. Brydon over dinner back at the inn about it, and he immediately replied.
“Oh, that must have been the wagon that traded with the neighboring village of Cotte.” (Brydon)
“What? I thought the wagons couldn’t pass through in the winter?” (Rook)
“If it gets as cold as it is now and the ground freezes over, it will be passable. But if there is a lot of snow on the ground, it would be very difficult.” (Brydon)
“Are they going to trade even though it’s hard?” (Rook)
Mr. Brydon looked at me and said, “Oh, come on.”
“We can hardly grow food in this town, you know. How are you supposed to survive without food?” (Brydon)
“Oh, come to think of it, there’s that.” (Rook)
“Just in time for winter, we’ll have enough food to last us until the next season. If we don’t buy it, this town will be in trouble. Especially since the dungeon in Aluppo disappeared this year!” (Brydon)
Saying this, Mr. Brydon swung his knife down with a thud!
The words “Aluppo’s dungeon disappearance” startled me for a moment.
Shion also stopped eating for a moment and looked at Mr. Brydon.
“Disappearance of the dungeon…” (Rook)
“Ah, thanks to that thing, adventurers who can no longer eat are pouring in. So food is going to be even tighter than usual this year.” (Brydon)
“Is that so…” (Rook)
“Before it happened, we are happy if the dungeon disappeared. Nobody knew that the disappearance of a nearby dungeon would have such an impact. You’ll have to experience it to understand it!” (Brydon)
Mr. Brydon swung the knife down again.
The sound made me a little jumpy again.
“No~, the Sword of Granton, who destroyed the dungeon of Aluppo, the clan of Duke Grespo of the Republic of Canadaira, they did unnecessary things!” (Brydon)
“You… you know a lot, huh?” (Rook)
Mr. Brydon looks at me with a glare.
“No, it just happened, I just heard about it!” (Brydon)
“…Well, that’s all right. But people are really happy about the disappearance of the dungeon. I know it’s a bad thing. They’re just confused by the magnitude of the impact.” (Rook)
After saying that, Mr. Brydon stared off into the distance and continued.
“But if it was the demon king who created it, he’s got some really nasty ideas. He made people dependent on the dungeon, and then he planted a spark in them so that they would hesitate to destroy the dungeon. That’s exactly what the demon king wanted.” (Brydon)
It is true that if dungeons were something that would only be detrimental to mankind, he would go all out to extinguish them. However, there are also aspects of the dungeon that are not being exploited because of the large number of useful things that are coming out of the dungeon. If dungeons were created to harm humanity, as the Church claims, that would be ironic.
And the next day. Today, we head to the church in the morning.
At last, the day has come.
I enter the church and pray first.
I put my hands together in my own way and pray to the Mysterious god and the Goddess of Light.
“You’re early today.” (Priest)
“Yes. I wanted to come a little earlier.” (Rook)
I made a small donation after having a light chat with the priest.
“We are always grateful for your help.” (Priest)
“No… Ah, yes. Regarding the recovery magic we talked about before. Thanks to the priest’s advice, I was able to practice well, thank you very much.” (Rook)
“Oh, I see. I’m glad to hear that. I’m sure Lady Stella will be pleased.” (Priest)
Lady Stella… I had always been somewhat curious about her, but I had never heard of her. Who is Lady Stella of this Stella Church? I was curious about it again.
“Um, is Lady Stella the reason for the name of this Stella Church?” (Rook)
“Oh, you came from another town, didn’t you, Mr. Rook? She is a saint who was born in this place. She saved many people in this place. She wanted to save many people regardless of their status, and she raised many healers in this place. I am sure that such a person like Lady Stella would be pleased with the birth of a new healer.” (Priest)
“She was a great woman, wasn’t she?” (Rook)
“Yes, according to legend, she healed her fallen allies in battle with recovery magic while riding at the head of the group on a unicorn and annihilating the herd of Yeti that was then made a nest in the area.” (Priest)
What is with that muscle-brained Battle Priest story? It’s a little scary, but… a question pops into my mind.
Speaking of which, what about the Great Church?
“…I was just wondering. Then what with the town’s Great Church?”
“Great church, huh…” (Priest)
The priest closed his eyes and looked down.
The topic of the Great Church seems to forbidden, as expected…
The priest continued to talk, staring at the statue of Tessretia, the goddess of light.
“Should I call them people who have forgotten Lady Stella’s teachings over the years and pursued their own selfish desires… That would go against Lady Tessretia’s thinking too… No, forget it. Please. I’m just a whining old man.” (Priest)
The priest’s profile looked forlorn as he said this.
I thanked the priest and left the church.
Outside was the same as usual, with the same macho and snowy landscape.
“I guess there are various things going on…” (Rook)
I guess church relations are not monolithic, and there are various ties, factions, and differences in thinking.
While crunching through the snow on the ground, I take out the [Enhancement Scroll] from my magic bag.
“…I don’t know if I should be doing this in such a somber mood.” (Rook)
Today’s purpose is to strengthen my weapon. Frankly, that’s why I came to church early in the morning.
I asked the adventurers various things about armament enhancement, but there wasn’t much information. However, I’ve heard many times that a newly made weapon will normally succeed once or twice.
“Even hearing that still makes me nervous…” (Rook)
Well, now that I’ve got the Mithril Alloy Cudgel followed by the mithril spear, I don’t seem to have any more use for this staff, so it doesn’t matter if it burns up and disappears.
Anyway, now I want to make more attempts to get data than to strengthen the weapon. I need to make a few attempts and see some trends.
I’m going to wrap the [Enhancement Scroll] around the wooden staff I had.
And just in case, lightly strike a muscle pose one or two times…
“Alright! Let’s go! [Armament Enhancement]!”
The [Enhancement Scroll] was tinged with light, crumbling like it was burning, and it was absorbed by the staff.
Since it was successful once last time, this staff was successfully strengthened for the second time.
I gripped the staff and lightly cast a spell.
“Light, illuminate my way [Light Source].” (Rook)
A light appears at the tip of the staff.
“Hmm… I can’t feel any change.” (Rook)
There is no particular change in the sensation when I touch it with my hand or shake it.
I don’t think there has been a big change, just like the first time.
“Alright! Let’s try again!” (Rook)
I took out the [Enhancement Scroll] from the magic bag and strengthen it again. Then I continued to strengthen it once more.
This will be the fourth enhancement in total, but…
“Still no change.” (Rook)
There doesn’t seem to be any change in the staff. There is no change when I try to use magic.
What is going on with this?
Is it possible that there is no change at all after one or two times, and you have to do it ten or twenty times to see a change?
“If so, how is this cost-effective?” (Rook)
Ten reinforcement scrolls cost 100 gold coins, and 20 is 200. Then you can buy another mithril spear.
Is it worth it to do that much work for such a small change, with the possibility of the armament disappearing?
“Hmm… I don’t know, but I’ll try again.” (Rook)
This time, the objective is to take data. I want to challenge myself until I can see even the slightest change.
“[Armament Enhancement]!” (Rook)
The [Enhancement Scroll] glowed, crumbling like it was burning and being absorbed into the staff—the moment when it was about to be absorbed, the staff crumbled with the light as well.
In the blink of an eye, everything is gone, leaving nothing but snow on the ground.
I failed… I’m screwed…
There was neither staff nor [Enhancement Scroll] left on the ground. Everything disappeared into nothingness.
Although I had expected to fail, I was struck with an indescribable sense of emptiness.
“Four [Enhancement Scroll] alone… 40 gold coins, huh…” (Rook)
In an instant, it was gone. It was all for nothing. No, it wasn’t a waste because I got the data… but it was wasted.
As I gazed at the ground with a sense of emptiness, before I knew it, a shirtless machi man was standing next to me.
“Failures happen to everyone. Adventurers get over them and move on to tomorrow.” (Macho)
The macho man puts his hand on my shoulder.
“Don’t be sad. Muscles betray no one. Even if our parents and siblings betray us, muscle is our friend for life.” (Macho)
“If you, boy, continue your training and achieve a body of steel like mine, you will one day know the joy of success.” (Macho)
Macho continues with his chest flexing.
“There is no need to be afraid. Boy who has only just opened the door to this world.” (Macho)
“Welcome to the world of armament enhancement colored with muscles.” (Macho)
Macho said this with white teeth and a smile and then disappeared.
The sun was shining brightly and the snow on the ground was reflecting it back. A cold wind caressed my cheeks, bringing with it the voices of the children at the orphanage and the macho armament enhancers.
The world is still beautiful today.
Well… What now?
I lost my staff because I failed to strengthen my weapon, so I have a lot to think about.
No, just before that…
“…what next?” (Rook)
There was no one anywhere to answer my question.
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