Gang of Yuusha

Chapter 25 – Holy Ghost King

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As the drilling process reached its climax, the men who were covered in mud, were earnestly checking the damage to the drill. “I will prepared a replacement blade”, “It’s still good”, “No, we should replace it”, “The motor is hot”, “At this rate, it can’t hold on for long”

「The echo sound has changed!」

Shouji, pinned his ears to the earthen wall, shouted angrily, and the whole group groaned. The expectation that they might have reached the deepest part of the dungeon spread.

「Yoshaa! It’s a treasure trove」

Lorelei, was standing in the tunnel and holding a water bucket, snapped her fingers, and Doldo, covered in dirt and holding a hose, nodded with an exhausted look on his face.

「I thought I was going to die when I fell off the cliff once……」

Stark shifted the lever and pointed the drill downward with a whirring sound. He put it on the ground and came to a safe stop, but turned off the power switch reluctantly.

「I could still driven it, though」

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Jydes, obs oyp pkvvkdt sd vbl yaxsale ryav sq vbl nyvlarkzzya valye, qszele bkp zltp yde pvlrrle qsaoyae vs tlv nzspla.

「Eykv, oykv, oykv, Fbswfk. Tso kp kv? Ebyv’p kv vbl pkvwyvksdp sd vbl svbla pkel? Pslp kv zssj zkjl vbl Oyavb Plhy Nlpnbky-nbyd yzalyeu qktbvkdt?」

Ekvb bkp lyap pvkzz yvvynble vs vbl oyzz, Fbswfk pbyarldle bkp blyakdt, obknb bye clld ldbydnle cu vbl lya-rsvksd.

「Ls, qasx lnbslp, kv pswdep zkjl vblu yal bkvvkdt psxlvbkdt vbyv zssjp zkjl y zyula. Rv’p y qkmle zsnyvksd….. Rv’p y xytkn oyzz. Mblal’p y cyaakla」
「Mbl rasvlnvksd xlydp vbl valypwal kp nzspl. Nlv’p es kv cu byde qasx blal」

Gp Jydes flajle bkp nbkdp, Pszes nyaakle y cwazyr pynj nsdvykdkdt vbl nwpvsxyau 『Flhld Msszp sq Mbl Mbklq』.

Ubkplzp yde byxxlap olal ekpvakcwvle vs lhlausdl. Wasx blal sd swv, kv oswze cl nyalqwz osaj. Mbl oyzzp xwpv cl elxszkpble ps yp dsv vs yaswpl vbl cyaakla. Mbl lyavb hlkd oyp bsv yde bwxke, okvb zyulap sq zkxlpvsdl xkmle kd okvb vbl bsv yka qasx vbl asnj eakzz.

Idsnj, jdsnj, jdsnj, jdsnj…….

Mblal yal qswa xld sd vbl oyzz.
Vzwp y tkaz pvydekdt kd zkdl.

Slowly and carefully, they scraped the wall in front of them.

When the rock was removed, a pure white layer appeared.

It looked like a dirty eggshell. It was probably the barrier, the very thing that had bounced off the sound.

When Shouji looked closely, he could see that magic power was constantly circulating in the inner walls.

The curved cross-section was covered with a rainbow colored radiance―― Something like oil was flowing.

Stark filled a wheelbarrow with the rocks lying at his feet and hurriedly carried them and dumps it to the cave.

As they worked, they began to divide up the work, and Doldo, who was not very strong, was the first to take a break. The meticulous manual labor seemed to take a long time.

As Shouji, wearing leather gloves, mindlessly worked on the excavation, Lorelei, apparently bored with the work, came close to him. Her faded blonde hair bounced around, not fully concealed by her safety helmet. Her beady eyes were bored and as she wanted to talk.

「Darling. It’s so boring, isn’t it?」
「Of course it is. This is what dungeon conquest should be」
「Seriously? Is this really okay? Really? There are no traps or anything, and we don’t even have to fight any monsters and we almost finish it. The adventurers will cry if they see us」
「We don’t choose our means, you know.」
「That’s right. Hey, you know what? …… I’ve been thinking. I want to learn」
「Learn what?」
「Like how to use a magic machine, or how to use magic, …… that kind of thing. I want to be more useful to my darling’s party. Bando seems to be good at it, so I thought I want to learn a few things」
Ojou-chan. That’s impossible. You’re my friend’s woman, and I want you to keep a certain distance from me. Please ask the Magician Society honestly. If it is someone like you who came from a good place, they’ll teach you nicely as long as you give them money」

Lorelei pouted when Bando, which was removing a clump of dirt with adhesive tape, interrupted her with a joke.

「You guys have some really weird rules, don’t you? Or rather, am I really in that position? Somehow, I feel like I am not being treated as a girl at all. He won’t fuck me and I’m dry all the time」
「You’re still immature in many ways, you know」

Shorty shook Lorelei’s safety helmet, while wondering if he should try to get a potion to grow her body. The girl has a resentful look in her eyes. Her teeth clicked together in a threatening manner, like an angry lapdog.

When the detail work was finished and the rough part of the barrier was exposed, Bando stopped.

「It’s about time. I’ll take care of the barrier somehow」

Bando chanted a spell and created a transparent silk cloth―― A thin, veil-like object.

He pulled it easily between his hands and stuck it on the barrier, forming an ellipse as he piled up several layers.

「What are you doing?」
「It’s one of manipulation magic,『Fake Seal』. As you can see, it looks like it’s a holy barrier, but I thought I could do it」
「I don’t understand with that explanation」
「Hey, Bando-sensei. Your cute student wants an explanation」

When he was teased amusingly, Bando dropped both shoulders with a tired face, but he pushed through and nodded.

「Shouji…… I understand. If you had a solid barrier in front of you, what do you think you’d have to do to break in, ojou-chan?
「I will smash it」
「That’s right. That’s what most adventurers do. Most adventurers do that because they’re too stupid to use force. We professionals are different. We won’t tell the caster, 『Ha! My barrier have been broken!』. That’s just plain dumb」

Bando pressed his fingertip to the center of the seal.

A light flashed on. The piece of cloth that he had constructed with magical power mutated softly.

It assimilated with the barrier and became a slimy fluid.

「I made some of it liquefy from solid. We can pass through it now. The barrier are still ‘in place’, so the chances of it being sensed by the magician are greatly reduced. The power of the magician is a talent, but the technique can be learned by anyone. If you want to become a magician, keep this in mind」
「Hmmm …… it sounds troublesome. It’s like a parasite’s way of doing things」

A child’s mind is honest.

Having his method was denied directly, Bando looked at Shouji with a straight face. He urged the guardians to scold the girl severely.

With his eyes downcast, Shouji shook his head feebly from side to side before responding.

「When the fighting starts, we’ll start the operation. Someone is wearing an armor…… still a few kilometers away, but I can hear the sound of shoes running at great speed. When we start hearing sword fights, we will rush in」

 △ ▼ △

Kielnir was running as fast as he could, while fighting his feeling that was about to explode.

It will be bad if it goes as it is―― He need to make a name for himself.

It may sound ridiculous, but he needed to get the results that would make everything worthwhile. He can’t accept the idea of returning to royal capital after being abandoned by his teacher.

It would be a disgrace to his family and ruin his plans for the rest of his life.

Ah, right.

His confession failed. He must admit it.

He have to admit that he was stupid about everything.

He should have thought of a better time. His head was so hot that it slipped out of his mouth. Perhaps he had forgotten what kind of position he was dealing with. Her status as a commoner is just a facade―― A woman in a more glamorous place than him. She’s the one who has the people’s support. If you offend her, you will not be left unscathed.

That is why he keep it to himself.

「Haa…… haa…… ugh, shit, I…… I…… It’s not…… no, calm down, calm down!」

Kielnir put a hand to his chest, trying to calm his surging heart.

He slowed his pace, regulated his breath, and empty his thought. He had to change his mind. Being away from the Union was also a bad idea. Independent action is not allowed. It was out of discipline.

No―― Wait.

「Pretend to be embarrassed and confused like this…… Defeat the enemy, and then apologize」

That’s right. “Bring back a souvenir” and apologize.

He cannot just walk back into the team without doing anything.

Cutting the Lord Wraith’s head might just make up his mistake. The Union members, who was pleased after saving their trouble, might intercede with Leschia.

Yes, of course.

The members are all good people. He is sure they will defend him.

「I’m sure they will」

A green radiant light appeared in the dim darkness.

It was a wraith, a dead spirit wearing rags with human souls floating around it.

A skeletal figure with rotting skin that looked like it had been affected with plague. The little monster floated softly, chattering its jaws, and approached.

「Get lost!」

Kiel’nir waved his hand to scoop it up from below with a crude motion.

The flying blade that appears from the tips of his five fingers―― 『Finger Flash』is a colorless invisible slash. He creates a distortion in the space while sending diagonal slash at the wraith and splits it into pieces.

「…… Let’s go」

It was misunderstood as a special skill, but it does not really use the sword as a medium.

He was just trying to make the attack easier to understand so that his friends would not be harmed.

In fact, it might be easier for him to be alone.

He can use my power to his heart’s content without worrying about anyone else.

As one of the people who live in a non-human demon world, his abilities as the『Rupture Hero』 should be no inferior than anyone else’s.

If he put his whole heart and soul into it, he can cut down the royal castle.

That’s right.

He has the invincible power to cut through anything he wants.

「It’s like a walk in the park」

He tried to laugh to cheer himself up, but it only made his cheeks quiver. The mental storm had not subsided yet. He stretched his cheeks. Then used elementary light magic to hang a 『Light Ball』 in the air.

The place became brighter. The red light calms him down.

After moving for a few minutes, a corrupted troll undead walked out of the darkness. Its eyeballs were gone, and its skin was rotten and covered with maggots. It was muttering something, like a prayer, but he could not make out the language.

It was about twice as tall as Kielnir.

It was a big, fat troll with a big belly, and it moved sluggishly with its club, but with『Finger Flash』, he easily tore off it’s stiff arm and dropped it\s head to the ground.

If the target is big, it is only a small fish for Kielnir.

The fight to march on continued.

He cut up every single one of the grotesque monsters that were spreading the rotten smell.

Elder Wraiths, skeletal soldiers, ghoul―― No matter how powerful the monsters that appeared, they were not something that worth mentioning.

The wreckage was scattered around the path that Kielnir walked.

The rotten liquid splashed against the rock walls, and the rotten guts were dumped like discarded garbage.

He stomped on the lump of green flesh with his silver shoes and moved forward.

「Haa…… Haa…… Hufff」

The pleasure of executing justice by laying waste to the wicked was irresistible. It is a great way to relieve some of the stress he have. No matter how scary it was, he was a hero and there was no way he could lose.

The euphoria of the battle had made Kielnir self-absorbed, but he could no longer keep up his faint smile.

It had only been a few minutes, but he had reached the end of the line.

「Is this the Haunted Land……?」

As he passed through the cave, his vision suddenly became wider. A vague slanting light leaked from the sky.

For a moment, he thought he had gone outside, but then he saw a rock wall in the distance and realized that this was not the case. The white hazy light was also caused by the light source stone. It must have been embedded in the ceiling.

A town had been built on the gently sloping hill, even though it was in a dungeon.

Or was it the ruins that had originally existed?
At a quick glance, he could see that there were several hundred houses.
It was an unbelievable scenery.

Kielnir could not believe his eyes, but blinking repeatedly dd not change the fact that there was a small town there.

The gray stone houses were crowded together. The waterways and public baths were well maintained, and the stores had signs and proper streets.

Although mostly weathered, the semicircular windows are decorated with fine relief carvings, and the architectural style of the houses built with the same technique is old-fashioned and historical.

The most conspicuous thing is the innermost area.

At the end of the steep stone staircase with more than a hundred steps, there is an ornate stone pillar and a crypt with a cylindrical roof.

It is a magnificent structure that will move anyone’s heart at first sight.

It is undoubtedly a historical heritage.

「…… It’s weird ……」

It is not the time to stand still.

He stepped onto the paved road filled with dice-shaped stones.

He walked through the decaying triumphal arch at the entrance and exit, sandwiched between the uninhabited houses.

Kielnir felt a creeping discomfort, probably due to the chill that invaded through his armor.

There is no water flowing in the Haunted Land, there is no life, and there is no sign of people.

He understand―― it was not weird.
There are no spirits of the dead either, but they must be hiding somewhere.

 The square in the center of the town―― Approaching the common well―― And discovering a stone vat placed beside it, Kielnir’s doubt was answered.

「It’s all fake…… it’s not real……」

If he look back in history―― It is an underground cemetery where the powerful people of Error Knife were pushed down in the past. It is the resting place of sinners with money. It is not surprising that they are building a resting place for those who cannot go to heaven.

Is that the reason why the present world was fussing over it?

Was it a false historical fact that the bereaved family could not enter?

Maybe they did not want to let too many people in by spreading a horrible ghost story. If so, was it for the repose of souls that the sisters of the Holy Church had made it their trial site?

Because they wanted the dead to be at peace so much that they built a town of tombs.

「Rupture Hero-sama

He was alarmed and turned around. he wondered since when did Alistia had been standing there, and was smiling at him. He could not help but look around, but there was no sign of the Union members. When he thought that she was the only one who had followed him, Kielnir felt so sad that he felt like his heart would break.

「…… Alistia-san
「How do you think about the Haunted Land?」
「Hmm…… It’s a lonely place. The leader…… What about Leschia-san?」

When he asked her about it, all he got was a hollow laugh.

The woman who was supposed to be full of life force has disappeared like a ghost.

The fact that he was in a silent city caused cold sweats to run down his forehead.

「I was six years old when I first came here, following my sister in secret. It is a holy place that is considered as a test to become a full-fledged priest, so I was curious to know what kind of place I would visit in the near future. However, the first time I saw the holy magic was used, it was far from ideal」

The monologue was suffocating and tinged with an incomparable sadness.

His instincts are ringing alarm bells. His sense of danger increased.

There was an alarming feeling in the air, as if someone was watching him.

「It was terrible compulsary things. The art of sending the dead to nothing―― or to God’s side―― without question, without healing or anything else. Even though they claimed to be the God’s envoy, what they were doing was merciless. Can that really be called true salvation? At least, it was not the salvation I was aiming for. You don’t even know yourself, but you already know the pain of being forcibly healed, don’t you, Rupture Hero-sama?」

A vague black flame flickered out from inside the well.

From the cracks in the building and from the dry land―― the spirits of the dead crawled up to Alistia as they appeared. They snuggled down beside her and hovered next to her as if they were her subordinate.

「Actually, I wanted a better seed than you…… Well, since everyone is satisfied, I guess it’s okay. KarmaLeg-sama is also presence, I think we’ll be blessed with a good things today」
「Are you an undead?」

She did not look like it, but he could not help but ask.

Alistia giggled.

「No, I’m a warm human being…… Anyway, I think it’s better not to have too much of a stereotype that only monsters are on the side of monsters. It’s improper, but I am sorry」

A wraith, more massive and imposing than the others, approached Alistia――There is a crown on its hand. The part where the jewel was framed is missing, but the golden radiance remains.

Alistia was handed the proof of her kingship and placed it on her head.
She turned her large eyes upward and positioned them perfectly so that they would not fall.

She smiles wickedly.
The countless ghosts behind her continue to multiply.
The flames of resentment were burning and emits a thick miasma.

Kielnir closed his eyes. He shook his head.
He made a sheath-slipping sound and pulled out his holy sword.
It’s less strenuous than the 『Finger Flash』, and more powerful.

Was it an attemp to divide them?
Or was it just a play to kidnapped him?
It does not matter which. Anything is fine. He calmed his exhalation.

He stretched his legs forward to the limits while exhausted, he held his sword in a low position and set his target.
No matter what happens, the only thing he need to do is to fight.

Anyway―― The head of the enemy he was looking for was right in front of him.

「What a shame. It’s a pity to kill a priestess. You are disobeying the God」
「Well, I’m not so sure about that. I’m still able to perform divine miracles. And I don’t intend to kill you, Rupture Hero-sama. I only need you to sleep for a little while. Please rest in the comfort of the painless world」

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