Metro Labyrinth Chapter 51.2: Ore Fungus and First Golem
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Mineral mining work means hunting fungus in the labyrinth. The Fungus Civilization has reached its peak.
“Can I eat them, squeak?” (Tamiko)
“I don’t think so, it might give you a stomachache. I mean, I’m afraid you’ll chip your teeth.” (Shuu)
“According to the guidebook… this color is probably ordinary corrosion-resistant iron. It’s a little bulky, but let’s take it home as a souvenir.” (Noa)
“Are there other kinds?” (Shuu)
“Yes, copper, lead, and so on. The lower you go, the more rare minerals you can get. …By the way, if it’s silvery white, it’s Mithril.” (Noa)
“Okay, let’s search for rare minerals!” (Shuu)
After searching the stairs and walking for a while, something unusual occurs within the range of the [Sensory Spores].
“I know!” (Shuu)
Ahead, about 30 meters ahead, a rock wall. Bam, bam, a heavy sound is heard.
The wall is shaking, as if a thin film has been pressed with the palm of one’s hand. Soon it takes the form of an arm and crawls out into the passage.
“…Woah, it’s coming out…” (Shuu)
I’m honestly impressed. A realistic, fantasy feeling. You can’t get this sense of realism in Nezumii or Yuniba. [T/N: Not sure what type of company Nezumii (ネズミー) or Yuniba (ユニバ) is. Nezumii could mean “mouse” or Yuniba could be “universal” or “university”. Update: Thanks to commenter Arasil I found that the “mouse” is Mickey and “universal” is Universal Studios.]
Soon, a headless rock doll lands on the floor.
It is more than three meters tall and quite large. The body surface is a little darker than the rock wall, the legs are short and thick, the arms are long and thick, and the body is an unbalanced inverted triangle. It has only three fingers. Whenever it moves, pebbles and sand fall out of its body.
“…is that a golem?” (Shuu)
Perhaps it has no vocal organs, the golem neither cries nor yells. To show its ferociousness, it bows its thick breastplate broadly and beats its chest with its palms as if it were a gorilla.
Perhaps they were satisfied after doing it for a while, they rushed towards me and my party.
“Lo-look there’s the golem, squeak!” (Tamiko)
“Hay, calm down, use [Risk Counter]!” (Shuu)
“How is it?” (Shuu)
“A pathetic 15, squeak.” (Tamiko)
“Suddenly you’re looking down at it.” (Shuu)
Golems are said to be beasts whose individual levels vary considerably. The level of the golem is usually around 15 at the shallow end, but in the deep end, there are individuals with levels of 30 and 40.
This one is a little higher than Ghost Wolf and Baphomet in terms of level. In terms of evaluation, it must be a small fry. However, you can’t measure fighting ability by level alone.
“I will do it!” (Noa)
Noa throws away down her luggage, puts her goggles over her eyes, and steps forward. She takes out her [Dagger] and readies herself.
“Hey, Noa–” (Shuu)
In a flash, the golem closes the distance. He swings his arm and slams it down carelessly.
Boom! The floor shatters. Noa just barely dodges it. She dives into his pocket and slashes at the Golem’s right leg.
There will be no pain, and the wound is shallow. The golem doesn’t stop.
Noa is faster than the golem. Dodging the sloppy attack, she uses her [dagger] to chip away at the huge body. Perhaps she is targeting the weak points by instinct.
“Hara-Hara, squeak…” (Tamiko)
Tamiko, who was watching over her, hugged her tail tightly. [T/N: Hara-hara is an H-game BTW. She should have used Ara-ara.]
There’s not enough attack power. It’s too incompatible with Noa’s Fungal Skill.
The power and durability are different. It’s like a battle between a bee and an elephant. It has a needle that can pierce through thick armor, but if it doesn’t hit the vital spot, it can’t kill, and no matter how much it attacks other areas, it doesn’t do any damage. On the other hand, even a single blow would tip the balance of the battle.
The golem’s foot raises a stone and debris, and Noa takes a step back.
The golem’s fist came down. Noa is too late to evade, and takes a stance to catch it.
A loud crash.
The rock fist collides head-on with the Hypha Hammer. The impact shakes the wall.
Swing my [War Hammer] with all my might. Its arm was shattered, and its shoulder fell off at once.
Rotating my body I and drive a follow-up attack into its chest.
The golem scatters debris and falls on its back.
It stopped moving. Whether it was good or bad, it seems that it was killed in one blow.
“The vital point? Did you hit it?” (Noa)
“…it looks like, squeak…” (Tamiko)
It was Noa, not Tamiko, who replied in Tamiko. He was shocked.
The golem has a main body, which extends mycelium and is covered with stones and rocks. Why it takes human form and why it moves like a person has not been known.
At any rate, the main body is said to be the golem’s vital point. The main body is always hidden somewhere in the body part, and one has to look for a marker to identify it from the surface. The cracks that resemble jumbled letters are the markers.
By hitting them hard, you can damage the body and render the golem inoperable. The old tale goes, “If you cut off the E of “EMETH” (truth), it will die! (meth = death)”, which seems to have been pulled from a fantasy novel.
It seems that the [War Hammer] just hit directly near the main body. I fearfully peeked at the shattered part and found a yellow hairy sphere exposed. It was sunken in and oozing white liquid. It appears to be dead.
“Well, that’s what you get at level 15–” (Shuu)
I stopped myself, but it was already too late. Noa is even more depressed.
I dig into the golem and pulls out the main body. As I had heard, it was a white hairy sphere about 50 cm in diameter. When I cracked open the bottom, I could see the sporangium. I gouged it out and offers one to Noa.
“Noa, here are is a sporangium. I’ll share one with Tamiko.” (Shuu)
“…No, I don’t have the right to eat it…” (Noa)
Noa and Tamiko look at each other.
“…I thought that with this kind of enemy, I wouldn’t have to bother Mr. Shuu and Sis. Even so, it was hard to deal with even a low-ranking golem…” (Noa)
“Ms. Noa? Ms. Noa?” (Shuu)
Noa crouched and carves letters with her [Dagger].
“Even though I’ve taken the trouble to have you Join… in the end, Mr. Shuu will not just let it defeat you and leave you alone… Small fry, squeak, Noa is so very weak, squeak…?” (Tamiko)
“You don’t have to be so self-deprecating…” (Noa)
I think weak Noa and puke Squirrel are similar. Well, they don’t look alike. It does not matter.
I sat down in front of her and held out the sporangium once again.
“If it weren’t for Noa, I think Tamiko and I would still be languishing somewhere underground right now. We wouldn’t even be hunters. Well, maybe you’re not as strong as us, but it’s not just about being out in front and being physically strong, right?” (Shuu)
I stroke Noa’s head. Her hair is curly and soft. It seems to dance between my fingers.
“Well, let’s be clear here. The division of our roles.” (Shuu)
We’ve come this far in a haphazard manner. I should have talked about this before the team’s first real battle. Noa was dependable for her level, and since she was a senior hunter, I left it up to her to make the decision.
We form a circle with Tamiko.
“Our three roles. We decide here and now! I’ll listen to any objections!” (Shuu)
“I’ll leave it to you, squeak!” (Tamiko)
Tamiko’s superior gives her approval. She clears her throat.
“Then, let’s start with Tamiko. First of all, Tamiko, you need to search using [Hearing] and analyze the strength using [Risk Counter]. And also scouting with [Camouflage] and [Avatar]. That’s what we call a Scout.” (Shuu)
“I am a Shinobi, squeak.” (Tamiko)
“That’s right, maybe a Kunoichi?” (Shuu)
“That’s right, squeak. From today onwards, my Fungal Class is [Kunoichi], squeak!” (Tamiko)
Nin Nin! Tamiko puts her fingers together. The second generation of Squirrel Kunoichi was born.
“Noa is the chief strategist and quartermaster. I mean, we can’t do this without Noa’s knowledge, you know. She also supports me. She has different abilities from me.” (Shuu)
High-school Girl, the chief strategist, was born.
“So I’m going to move in front. I’ll be the defender and the attacker. That’s what I’m suited for because that’s all I can do.” (Shuu)
“If that’s the case… It will be too much of a burden for Mr. Shuu…” (Noa)
“Well, if it’s a small fry, I’ll get the two of you to do it, and if there’s something I can’t do, I’ll ask you both for help.” (Shuu)
Even if there is a difference in level, two people are better than one, and three people are better than two. This is especially true in a harsh environment such as the Metro.
Once again, he held out the sporangium in his hand to Noa.
“We’re all friends, you know. You should share with us. You don’t have to think of that as a favor. If Noa gets stronger, it will help me and Tamiko, too.” (Shuu)
“I was born from my Mother and Abeshuu’s teacher, squeak.” (Tamiko)
“You’re being too much.” (Shuu)
Noa looks up. The shadow of despondency is gone and her usual bright light is back.
She takes the sporangium and bites into it with the vigor of an unarmed general who has fasted for three days.
“Nom-nom… I’m going to get stronger. Please wait, Mr. Shuu, Sis.” (Noa)
“Yeah, we’ll be waiting for you.” (Shuu)
“I’ll let you reach my tail, squeak.” (Tamiko)
“Yes! Squeak!” (Noa)
Her big sis is reliable. [T/N: Noa is starting to squeak. I’m worried about Noa’s vocabulary. Tamiko has a very sus vocabulary.]
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