After defeating Anis, the stalker who was after Chomsuke, we received some monetary reward from the caravan leader as well as an arrangement to stay in this high class hotel.
“—Hey, stop joking! As a modern man, how can I sleep in a stable!?”
Upon arrival in this city, I slept like a log and woke up to the sound of argument downstairs.
The room arranged for me by the caravan leader was deep inside on the second floor.
The argumentative noises came from downstairs again.
“I don’t want to sleep in a stable either! But we have no money, so it can’t be helped!”
It seemed to be an argument between people who couldn’t endure living in a stable.
They must be rookie adventurers new to this city.
I rubbed my sleepy eyes and stretched my back on the bed.
The sky was darkening, so it should be around evening time.
“This is different from what I expect from an adventurer’s life! An adventurer should make a lot of money, then live in the best room, and drink until he’s drunk for the next two days!”
“What are you telling me for! Only 1,000 eris was left out of the money I received from that Eris Cult uncle. We’ll use this money for dinner, then quickly get to sleep!”
“Da-Damn it! I didn’t come here to live like this!”
I listened to the noises and walked to the neighboring room where Yunyun stayed.
—Axel, the city where rookie adventurers gathered.
This was the city that every adventurer would visit at least once.
“Yunyun, are you awake? Some noisy adventurers out of nowhere woke me up. Want to have dinner on the first floor?”
After knocking on the neighboring door, sleepy-eyed Yunyun opened the door.
“If you still want to sleep, you don’t have to force yourself to come, okay?”
“……I want to go. After all, it’s rare for me to be invited to dinner.”
After Yunyun made such a sad statement, we walked down the stairs.
Most hotels utilized the first floor as a tavern and a pub.
Perhaps because it was dinner time, the pub was very crowded. We found an empty spot and ordered this city’s specialty, fried frog set meal.
I ate the set meal and asked Yunyun about our future plans.
“Okay. Although we had a lot of incidents today, we are currently in an unfamiliar city. We have no time to casually get into the right mood. Let’s set our itinerary for tomorrow.”
“That’s true. We need to take on quests to cover the cost of living. So we must recruit companions.”
Recruit companions, huh.
Then we should visit the Adventurer’s Guild in this city.
Yunyun also intend to recruit companions? I can’t move after using Explosion magic, so I have no choice but to be in a party. But Yunyun can probably clear simple quests alone, right?”
“It’s discomforting to be mobbed by monsters, and I want adventuring companions too. We can live and eat together in this hotel. After finishing a big quest, we can cheer and drink in the pub… Eh. I left the village merely to go with the flow of things, but this is unexpectedly good…”
Yunyun mumbled as she used her fork on the fried frog.
“In that case, we will find companions tomorrow. The Adventurer’s Guild should have a notice board for party recruitment. We’ll take a look there, and ask how to take on quests.”
I left behind Yunyun whose eyes were sparkling dreamily, and gathered information from the other customers in the pub.
There was another mission I must complete in this city.
“—Excuse me. May I have a moment of your time?”
“Oh, what is it, little girl? Why are you in this place at this time?”
“Your mother will be worried. You should go home early.”
I approached two uncles at a nearby table and was treated as a kid.
“No. I’m an adventurer who takes on a role alone. Look at this, if you don’t believe me!”
I was a bit frustrated at being treated like a kid, so I pushed my Adventurer’s Card in his face.
“So-Sorry, I was wrong! So, what’s the matter, little girl?”
“There is something I’d like to ask. I heard that in this city, there is a wizard who can use Explosion magic.”
“Explosion magic?” X2
Perhaps they did not understand the arcane jargon, both of them looked doubtful.
“That’s the strongest offensive magic. I heard there is a pretty and powerful wizard with big breasts in this city…”
“A pretty and powerful wizard with big breasts… Ah, that should be the shop owner!”
“That’s right. It should be that poor shop owner!”
“Po-Poor shop owner?”
I received an unexpected answer.
“She is the famous owner of a magic item shop in this city.”
“Ah. She used to be an adventurer. She is a very powerful wizard.”
A powerful wizard who was a former adventurer.
Was she the person I was looking for?
But I was a bit bothered by the description of her being “poor”.
She was a serious and reliable person, yet her business sense was terrible?
I asked for the shop address and engraved it in my mind.
Once I knew the address, I could find her anytime.
Although I wanted to let her witness my growth immediately…
“……Well, that can wait after I have become an adventurer in this city.”
I was a bit timid when it was time to actually meet her.
“Okay, Yunyun, let’s go! Be enthusiastic!”
“I-I know, but why are you so excited early in the morning!?”
We didn’t even do any research on this city, going directly to the Adventurer’s Guild early in the morning.
“What are you saying? Our anticipated lives as adventurers are starting today! Battling unknown, powerful enemies in a bloody carnage! Blowing away monsters with my Explosion magic! I’m nearly bursting just thinking about it! How can I not be excited!?”
Facing me as I excitedly waved my staff in the streets,
“I-I know! I know, so keep your voice down!”
Yunyun said in embarrassment as she looked around.
As it was still early, there were few people in the streets.
We came early to the Adventurer’s Guild to find companions.
Before the doors, the future hero candidates were ready to make trouble.
I stopped before the door and said to Yunyun, who was panting.
“Yunyun, listen. The first impression is very important. The Adventurer’s Guild is full of rude people, who will look down on young rookies like us. Once the door is opened, loudly declare your name! Crimson Magic Clan must not be underestimated!”
“Ahahah… I hope scary people won’t find us, I hope they won’t find us…”
I opened the door and flicked my cloak, declaring loudly!
“My name is Megumin! The top wizard of Crimson Magic Clan, who specializes in Explosion… magic…”
There was nobody there.
Yunyun blushed and shivered behind me as she hugged Chomsuke.
Hearing this, my face reddened somewhat.
“Coming… Ah, what is it early in the morning?”
An elder sister came forward from deep inside the seemingly empty guild. She looked a guild staff.
I looked at the guild again. Forget about adventurers who are taking on jobs, there wasn’t even any normal customers in the tavern.
I readjusted my mindset and approached the elder sister at the counter.
“Goo-Good morning. I’m Megumin, an arch wizard. This is my first time being an adventurer, so I don’t know what to do…”
“Ah, your eyes. You must belong to Crimson Magic Clan, right? I see. If I remember correctly, Crimson Magic Clansmen receive their Adventurer’s Cards in school. Then, do you have your card? I need to examine it before you can take on quests, checking for issues like criminal records…”
“Sorry, can the card examination be done later? I preferred it to be when there are more adventurers around.”
I left the bewildered elder sister and sat at a nearby table.
“Megumin, aren’t you submitting your card? If not, I will do it first.”
“No problem. I’ll do it when there are more people around.”
Yunyun looked confused and handed her card to the receptionist.
“Let me see… Eh! Th-That’s Crimson Magic Clan for you! This is my first time seeing someone with this much magic power!”
I listened to their conversations and smiled, waiting for people to arrive.
The guild eventually became crowded. Some people were eating at the tavern, while others were looking at the notice board for jobs.
I listened to the din typical of a tavern and said to myself.
“…It’s almost time.”
Yunyun, who eating noodles, lifted her head to look at me as I stood up.
“I say, why did you wait until it gets crowded to submit your card? It was empty earlier…”
I said, “I’ll be right back” to Yunyun, who didn’t understand anything. I walked over to the receptionist.
By the way, there was a convention for choosing the receptionist.
I must choose the most beautiful receptionist.
This type of receptionist usually had a shocking background, such as being the guild’s poster girl or a powerful ex-adventurer.
I learnt this in school. It was common knowledge as an adventurer.
“Next… Oh, you are a Crimson Magic Clansman?”
A beautiful receptionist with big breasts and wavy hair said as she looked at my eyes.
“As you can see, I’m a Crimson Magic Clansman. From today onwards, I intend to use this city as a base, so I’m here to submit my Adventurer’s Card for examination.”
“I see. Let me take a look… Thi-This is!? Awesome, that’s Crimson Magic Clan for you. Your intelligence and magic power stats are so high…!”
The receptionist said in shock, and the adventurers took notice of the disturbance.
This was it. This was what I wanted. A receptionist who was shocked by my stats and thus made the other adventurers take notice!
This way, I wouldn’t be underestimated by the adventurers in this city…
“Your magic power is not as high as the person who came yesterday, but it is still quite high… Good. No criminal record. The card is genuine. You may take on quests now.”
“Sorry, wait a moment. Not as high as the person who came yesterday? That means, there is someone who have even more magic power than me?”
“Yes. It was someone who registered as an adventurer yesterday… Because her intelligence is too low, she couldn’t become a wizard. I think she took the job of an arch priest.”
“Oh, that person yesterday, right?”
“It should be her.”
“She’s indeed beautiful, but she… said something about being a goddess.”
“If only she isn’t an Axis Cultist. And if she doesn’t say such weird things, I would have invited her…”
“She shouted out such weird things precisely because she’s an Axis Cultist.”
The adventurers started talking among themselves after hearing the receptionist.
What was that about?
Was it about that arch priest?
Anyway, if she became an arch priest, she wouldn’t be an obstacle to my goal of becoming the most powerful arch wizard. So whatever.
“You! Are you free? Do you have adventuring companions in this city?”
“Hey, wait! That’s too cunning! I was here first!”
“My party has two members with advanced jobs! How about it!?”
Hearing my conversation with the receptionist, the other adventurers rushed over to invite me.
—At a corner of the tavern, I listened to a guy and a girl introduced themselves.
“I’m the fighter, Reinis. This is the thief, Reiner. Please to meet you!”
“I’m Megumin. Please to meet you.”
“……Is that your real name?” X2
“It’s my real name. If you have any comments about my name, let’s hear it.”
“N-No! No comments! Right, it’s Crimson Magic Clan after all…”
Ugh, hm. I feel it’s a nice name!”
They said in panic.
I chose to join this brother-and-sister team.
A normal adventuring party composed of four to six members.
I joined this small party because a small party meant a larger share of the reward.
As I currently only have the cash reward from the caravan, I must make some money.
Somewhat concerned, I looked over to the other table and noticed Yunyun looking around suspiciously.
She raised her hand and whispered “Uh…”, but nobody heard her in the din.
This was a good opportunity for Yunyun to improve her social skills. I shouldn’t intervene to help her. Let her resolve it herself.
“What is it? Is there another adventurer you want?”
“Including yourself, we are only three. It’s okay to recruit more members.”
“No, nothing. Let’s find a punitive expedition quest. Let’s finish one quest to test our compatibility. This would be a probation period.”
They didn’t have any objections.
In the distance, after being lost for a while, Yunyun took some paper from the receptionist and started writing something.
It seemed she gave up on asking for an invite and decided to make her own party to recruit members.
“There’s a punitive expedition quest for squirrels. Megumin, how about this?”
“In this season, the squirrels must have fattened. They should be delicious.”
What was a squirrel?
They said it was delicious when it became fat, so it must be an edible monster.
Now was the time for appetite. It was the season for chestnuts.
This monster’s name was tempting.
“Let’s do it then!”
As this was my first quest, I nodded my head excitedly.
It loved to eat chestnuts and its meat was tender and tasty.
About the size of a dog, the squirrels would agilely invade the agricultural regions of the city and ruin the farmers’ harvests.
“Megumin, Megumin! A lot of them are coming! They’re coming, coming! Please wipe them out with magic! Reiner, support Megumin. Don’t let the squirrels get close to her!”
“Brother, be careful! There’s one coming out of the shadows!”
“Ugh! That was close…!”
A metallic noise rang out from Reinis’ shield.
He used the shield to block the squirrel’s attack.
“Leave it to me. I can clear them all with one hit! Just give me some time!”
“Are you sure!? There are more than 20 of them!? Anyway, please hurry!”
“Brother, in front. In front of you!”
Reiner shouted as she slashed at the squirrels. Reinis raised his shield hurriedly.
A metallic sound rang out once more. The squirrel’s barb scrapped against the shield.
With a cute name like squirrel, these monsters have barbs covering their bodies.
A person without metal armor would be heavily injured if subject to such attacks.
Reiner tossed her daggers at the squirrels, while Reinis forced himself to take the blows.
With no margin for failure, sweat flowed down my nervous face.
I completed my magic incantation, raised my staff, and shouted at them.
“Both of you, pull back from the enemies! I’m going to blast the center of the monster mob!”
Both of them pulled back from the squirrels.
At the same time, I chanted!
A beam of light shone from the tip of the staff straight into the mob of squirrels.
The target glowed white as light and heat expanded with the magic.
With an explosive noise in the agricultural district, my magic blew the squirrels away with no quarters given.
The power of Explosion magic did not stop there. Even the chestnut trees, which that the squirrels feed on, were uprooted. Reinis and Reiner were rolling on the ground.
Along with the two of them shouting pitifully on the ground, I was blown off my feet by the magic shockwave. I enjoyed the sense of accomplishment of having cleared so many monsters in one move.
……But next time, I should keep in mind the area affected by the shockwave of my own magic.
“What is this!”
Reiner and Reinis stood up and cried out upon seeing the surrounding.
“Ha. Once I make my move, the squirrels’ fates are as you can see! The magic earlier is my finishing move, the ultimate offensive magic, Explosion magic!”
“Ex-Explosion magic! The Explosion magic that could not be used even after learning it due to vast mana exhaustion!? I heard it was a useless magic, but how is this useless!? This has completely changed the terrain!”
“Clearing so many squirrels in one attack… S-So powerful…!”
They sighed as I indulged in self-satisfaction.
Then Reinis said.
“Let’s move on to another location being attacked by squirrels. Also, can you use other magic besides Explosion? The bounty for squirrels is quite low. Selling squirrel meat is the main source of income.”
“That’s right. And even the chestnut trees were uprooted. I don’t know how much we will have to compensate for that… But if we can hunt 100 or so squirrels, it would be enough. By the way…”
Reiner bended over next to me.
“—How long are you going to lie there? Are you hurt after being blown off by the shockwave?”
She asked worriedly.
“No. I merely cannot move due to exhausting my mana. So I cannot use any more magic today…”
Reinis said as he looked at Chomsuke, who moved its face to my nose and sniffed.
“Is it that exhausting? Then, starting from tomorrow, let’s seal this magic. Use other magic tomorrow. Save Explosion magic for emergency situations.”
“That’s right. Just use intermediate or advanced magic during normal times…”
I replied to both of them.
“…? Can’t use what?”
“Ah. Can’t use advanced magic right? It’s fine if it’s intermediate magic…”
“No. Can’t use anything other than Explosion magic. I only learnt Explosion magic.”
“…… ……” X2
Both of them were silent for a while. Then Reinis said slowly.
“Then. That is the only magic?”
“… In other words, you can use magic only once per day?”
Both of them were speechless.
“…….We need to discuss this. Please wait.” X2
They said and left me there on the ground.
As I lay there, I couldn’t hear what they were discussing.
After a while, they returned.
“Sorry for waiting… Ah. How should I say this? I feel that a rookie party like ours is unable to provide you with the opportunity for action.”
“Yes. With powerful magic like Explosion, it would be a waste for you to stay in our party.”
They said humbly.
“I don’t mind. As long as there’s growth…”
Compensating for each other’s weakness was the point of being in a party.
But Reinis shook his head hurriedly as he heard that.
“No, no, no. We are just a rookie duo. We were overconfident of ourselves in trying to recruit an arch wizard from Crimson Magic Clan!”
“Yes, yes! And, you see, neither of us have advanced jobs! So in terms of compatibility and balance—!”
Yes… If that was how it was, it couldn’t be helped.
“This time, we would make a loss due to the chestnut trees being blown off, but we will pay for it!”
“That’s right, so we will work hard to become stronger, until we are worthy of Megumin. At that time, we will reconsider, okay!?”
They spoke hurriedly as they carried me back to the guild.
This was difficult.
I felt apologetic about letting someone I just met pay for the damaged trees caused by my explosion, so I paid the compensation myself…
“I ran out of money so quickly…”
I dragged my exhausted body and collapsed on the table as lonely Yunyun ate her meal distractedly.
Nobody came when I was away to do the quest?
When my magic power recovered slightly, I became curious and went to look for Yunyun’s ad on the notice board…
“Recruiting party member. Must be gentle and willing to patiently listen to boring chatter. Must not mock people with weird names. Must be able to stay together even on days with no quests. Must be a frontline fighter. Preferably close to my age. I’m a 13-year-old arch wizard—“
Is this recruiting a friend, boyfriend, or what?
I felt that nobody would come if the recruitment was not done in a more relaxed manner…
There were many things to complain about, but it was taking all my effort just to settle my own affairs.
……That’s right. I didn’t want to think of it, but could it be that I was being dropped from the party by those two people earlier?
They said their abilities were too low for me, but that could be a convenient excuse to kick me out…
—As I was about to ponder in silence.
“Hey, newbie! You don’t even know what is a mackerel pike1. How have you been living your life so far!?”
“No. I know what is a mackerel pike. It’s a kind of fish, right? It is meant for the ‘Roasted Salt Mackerel Pike Set’ on the menu, right?”
The tavern owner in the guild was arguing with a youth with brown hair.
It was the guy I saw through the carriage window when I first arrived in the city.
His clothes were strange, so I remembered him well.
I didn’t see him this morning, so he must have just started work here.
“Right. It’s that mackerel pike. A fish. The kind with scales and is very active. In this season, it fattens and is especially tasty.”
“I know. I’m very clear about that. I’m sorry. Can you repeat your instructions?”
“Go to the field behind the guild and catch two mackerel pikes.”
“Are you fooling with me?”
The youth threw his apron at the tavern owner angrily.
This was the archetypal, easily angered young master.
What was so revolting about a simple job like catching mackerel pikes in the field?
A blue-haired waitress walked by the brown-haired youth, who was arguing with the tavern owner. Somehow, she was carrying an impossibly large number of beer mugs with both hands.
I remembered that she was with the brown-haired youth.
She must be starting work here today, like that youth.
“Sorry for waiting!”
“Oh. I’m waiting for this… Ha! Wh-What? This is plain water! Hey, you think I’m stupid?!”
“Newbie! What is the meaning of this? You have been serving plain water to the customers since the beginning! Where did the wine go? Were you drinking it on the sly?”
The tavern owner turned from the youth to scold the waitress.
“N-No! I merely touched the wine with my finger…! Listen! This is the way my body is! Actually, I’m the goddess of water…!”
“Hey, uncle, listen to me! Don’t take me for a fool just because I’m new to this city! How can you do this to a NEET who is now seriously working? What is this? Workplace bullying? Did you give out nonsensical instructions to get satisfaction out of my confusion!?”
A girl who was complaining and a guy who was making false accusations.
Faced with these two, the tavern owner’s arteries were bursting.
“Damn! Both of you are the ones speaking nonsense! Both of you are fired! Fired!”
Hearing this, the guy finally grappled the tavern owner, while the girl cried out loud without regard for the public.
… Compared to them, I’m considered quite good.
Feeling a bit more confident, I decided to return to the hotel today.
—On the way back to the hotel with Yunyun.
“Megumin, how was it today? Did you find a good party?”
“No. We did a quest… but they say it would be a waste for me to be in their party.”
“Is that so? After all, Megumin’s magic is very powerful, but you must find a proper place to use it.”
Yunyun said and looked around, as if she was concerned about the situation in this new city.
“Yunyun, I saw your recruitment notice. Did anyone come?”
“Yes. Someone came… But it was an uncle about my father’s age, who said, ‘I heard you are 13? Uncle… No, I’m 13 too! You are looking for a frontline fighter, right? Leave it to unc-me… I’m a high level crusader! I will protect you, little sister!’”
“You rejected, right? Of course you rejected, right!?”
“I-I rejected in the end… But that person chatted with me for a long time and treated me to lunch. I feel he’s a nice person. He said he will come and chat again tomorrow…”
“Ignore that person if he approaches you tomorrow! And rewrite your recruitment notice properly!”
“Ah!? I-I feel I didn’t write anything wrong…!”
—The second day.
“Welcome. Ah, adventurers, right? There is some precautionary matters today. You can get the instructions from the receptionist.”
The elder sister waitress said to me as I arrived at the guild.
I went to the reception area suspiciously. The receptionist was currently explaining to other adventurers.
“There is a report that demons have been sighted in the forest. According to the report, it probably isn’t low level demons like gremlins. Demons often have high intelligence and can use magic, so they are powerful enemies. It is currently under investigation. If you are not confident in your abilities, please do not take quests related to the forest.”
After this, adventurers everywhere sighed.
A lot of quests with good rewards were related to the forest.
Rookie adventurers began with hunting Giant Toads to increase their levels. Once their levels are high enough to handle the toads, they would usually enter the forest—
Hearing the notice, I walked towards the notice board for recruiting party members.
As a thank-you gift, the caravan leader prepared and paid for the two-weeks fee of our hotel rooms.
I hoped to find a party and secure my income before the hotel kicked me out in two weeks.
“I will find a party which is looking for members today.”
I mumbled softly as I examined the notices.
The first notice seemed like a new one written by Yunyun.
“Recruiting party member. Hopefully, someone who is fine when the conversation gets stalled. Someone who wouldn’t keep a distance even if I visit every day. Someone who won’t get angry even if our eyes do not meet. No restrictions on job and age.”
She compromised on the job and age requirements.
I felt that her compromise was somewhat strange…
I looked at Yunyun, who was once again sitting in a corner of the tavern and waiting for people to come.
Yunyun was playing a combat board game that she brought along for the trip.
Her sad demeanor made me uncomfortable and want to talk to her, but this was probably better for her to improve herself.
I continued to examine the recruitment notices on the notice board. On the board,
“Recruiting wizard and priest. The three current members are sword master, lancer, and thief. Our goal is to defeat the demon king. Rookies are welcomed, as long as you are enthusiastic. Why not come and save the world with me?”
From recruitment with such heroic mentality—
“Recruiting party members. The two current members are crusader and thief. Requires kinky trash, one frontline member and two rear support members. Must be intuitive and decent.”
—To recruitments with something blotted out. There were all sorts.
The former portion’s handwriting was different from that of the latter portion. What was originally written in the part that was blotted out?
After being puzzled for quite some time, I noticed a decent one.
“Recruiting party member. The current party has four members, two of which have frontline jobs. There are also an Eris Cult priest and an archer. Requires wizard job.”
Not a bad party.
I went for an interview with the party that posted the recruitment.
“—I see. Megumin, is it? That’s a Crimson Magic Clan’s name indeed. I’m the party leader, Ain. I have great expectations for you.”
He said. With a sword by his waist, the man looked like a warrior.
The others include a person with a lance, a priest wearing a pendant of Eris Cult, and a person with a long bow on his back.
They looked at me with critical eyes.
They were all males, average around Level 12.
That was almost the level to graduate from being a rookie adventurer.
“Pleased to meet you. Then, should we take on a quest to gauge each other’s abilities?”
“Yes… Let’s go into the forest. There is an eyewitness report of demons, but we shouldn’t have a problem with a Crimson Magic Clan wizard. Any problem with this?”
“No problem. No matter whether it is a demon or something else, I will kill it in one hit.”
Hearing my self-confident reply, the party members smiled.
In the wide forest near the city, Ain roared loudly.
“Too few! Jack, Thomas, and Megumin, back off! Rhodes, come with me to crush them!”
The accepted quest was to kill the slimes which appeared in large numbers in the forest.
Slime monsters were not scary when they were small, but once they ate enough to grow large, they could become difficult monsters that even first-class adventurers could not defeat.
It was a creature with strong resistance against physical attacks and could continue moving as long as the core within its body wasn’t destroyed.
“Ain, weapons are not very effective against them! Megumin, can you use magic to clear them off!?”
Rhodes shouted as he pierced a nearby slime with his lance.
“Sorry. In situation and position, everyone will be dragged into the magic effect. I can do something if we are in an open space…!”
“I-Is that so? It can’t be helped then! Hey, Rhodes, let’s go!”
“Bastard. We just have to do it!”
As rear support, we could do nothing except watch the frontline fighters drive off the slimes.
Finally, they returned, panting and covered with burn wounds.
The priest Thomas ran over to heal them.
“We were lucky the slimes were not big. Megumin, how was it? Are Rhodes and I of acceptable standards?”
“Of course. Both of you are cool. It’s up to me to show my skills next.”
Hearing this, Ain and Rhodes said shyly that they had great expectations and turned their backs to leave.
“—Why are there Blood Stink Flying Squirrels here!? Don’t they dwell in the deeper parts of the forest!?”
“We cannot reach them! Jack, Megumin! Use bow and magic to hit them down!”
We were ambushed by a large group of flying squirrels as we trekked deeper into the forest.
Both Ain and Rhodes used their weapons to intimidate the flying squirrels from getting too close.
“So-Sorry. If the flying squirrels congregate in low altitude, the magic will explode next to us!”
“You must be joking! Isn’t some smaller scale magic… Damn, Jack! Think of something!”
“Un-Understood. Leave it to me!”
Jack repeatedly shot down the flying squirrels which were circling around. To protect Chomsuke from getting hurt, I hugged it closely, making sure not to get in the way and lowering my head.
At this time, some sort of liquid dropped onto my hat.
What was that earlier?
There wasn’t any dark clouds in the sky, so it couldn’t be rain…
At this time, Ain raised his shield overhead and shouted.
“Blood Stink Flying Squirrels mark their targets with their pee! If you get drenched with it, the strong stink could not be removed for a week!”
I knew I couldn’t do it, but I still attempted to hit the Blood Stink Flying Squirrels by swinging my staff in rage.
“Hey, Megumin, what are you doing!? Keep your head quietly!”
“Don’t get in my way. I won’t stop until these flying squirrels are exterminated!”
As Thomas grabbed both my arms, most of the Blood Stink Flying Squirrels were finally defeated. The surviving few realized their disadvantage and escaped.
“—My important hat is ruined… I just have to wash it and leave it in the hotel for the stink to dissipate…”
During the rest after defeating the flying squirrels, I stared hatefully at the stinking hat in my hands.
Rhodes came over to the tree stump on which I was sitting.
“Hey. I want to ask. Under what conditions are you able to use magic?”
“Yo-You are asking about conditions… I guess as long as the enemies are far away in an open space that would not drag anyone else into its effect?”
Since I couldn’t do anything in the previous two battles, Rhodes probably felt I was unreliable.
“I see. Then it’s a mistake to enter the forest. Today, we will let you witness our abilities. Tomorrow, we will hunt on the plains instead.”
Ain said as he listened on the side and stood up.
I felt apologetic and embarrassed.
At this moment.
The trees rustled as if something was coming our way.
“Slime? Is it attracted by the scent of blood of the flying squirrels? Good timing. Now we can complete our quest…”
What came forth was indeed a slime, but…!
“S-So huge!” X4
That slime was as large as a storehouse.
“Hey, this is bad! We can’t handle one this size! Retreat!”
“Bu-But are we leaving it to grow further!? If we don’t destroy it now, next time it would become unstoppable!? There are flying squirrel corpses everywhere, so there is no lack of food…!”
Ain and Rhodes panicked. Jack and Thomas stood in a daze.
I said to the four of them in a short and simple manner.
“Please keep your distance from the slime.”
Hearing me, all four of them turned around.
“Wh-What? You intend to use magic?”
“It’s better to run away now…”
The four of them said to me as they moved away from the giant slime.
The slime started to engulf and consume the flying squirrel corpses.
Perhaps because there were tasty food, the slime couldn’t be bothered with us.
The four people moved behind me as I started the incantation.
“I say, doesn’t slime have high resistance against magic? Small ones are manageable, but even a Crimson Magic Clansman could not handle a slime of that size, right?”
“Shh! Shut up. This is a good chance to witness the rookie’s ability. It’s fine even if she couldn’t defeat it. If she can damage a slime of that size, then she is definitely worthy of being in our party.”
Ain’s and Rhodes’ voices came from behind me.
“Let’s give up on the reward this time. Compared to this… The slime is too big. It’s fine if we just report it to the guild immediately.”
Jack said as he prepared to run away.
The priest Thomas was puzzled as he listened to my incantation.
“What is it, Thomas? Is there a problem with the rookie’s magic?”
“Oh. There’s static electricity around Megumin. Ah. Is this lightning magic?”
Unlike Thomas, Ain and Rhodes became interested and said without panic.
As the only magic-user besides me, Thomas realized that the upcoming magic was of an abnormal scale.
The other three person saw Thomas’ face paled, and turned to look at me.
“Hey, Megumin. There’s no need to defeat the slime here. There is no adventurer in this city that can defeat a slime of that size. If we report it to the guild, they will summon more powerful adventurers from other cities.”
“I-I say, is there a problem? The atmosphere feels like it is quivering…”
Ain and Rhodes said uneasily.
As I continued the incantation, I pointed my staff at the slime which was still consuming the flying squirrel corpses.
“Wa-Wait! This feels really bad! Hey, back off further!”
“Eh? What are you saying, Thomas? We are already so far away. No matter what, this distance should be…”
As Rhodes said that, the incantation for Explosion magic was finished.
“Everyone, please lower your heads! A mere slime would be blasted into oblivion by my sure-kill magic!”
The four of them heard this and dropped down on the ground.
As a beam of light flashed from the staff tip and penetrated into the slime’s body, the huge body expanded.
Following a blinding flash, the explosive wind knocked down all the surrounding trees.
All the birds in the forest flew off because of the explosive noise, and the shockwave shook the entire forest.
As the smoke cleared, the huge slime was gone. Including me who was suffering from mana exhaustion, the other four people were prone on the ground.
… Next time, I should increase the distance a bit more.
—In the tavern of the guild.
After exhausting my mana, I collapsed on the table. Ain and the rest started drinking beer in high spirits.
“Ah. You are truly a Crimson Magic Clansman. So admirable!”
“That scene was so awesome! I was trembling after seeing the ruin left in the wake of that magic!”
“Unbelievable. To think that magic resistant slime was defeated in one hit…”
The three of them praised me repeatedly.
At this time, Rhodes came over with a drink.
“Uh, how should I say this? Sorry. I thought you were a wizard who is all talk only. My apologies.”
I lifted and shook my head at Rhodes, who lowered his head and handed over some fruit juice.
“No. There is something I should say, so if you want to apologize, do it later.”
Hearing this, the four of them wore a puzzled expression.
“Actually, I can only use that Explosion magic earlier. In other words, I can only exert all my power to use that magic once per day. I’m confident that I can be a trump card against powerful enemies, but will this party be fighting such powerful enemies every day?”
Hearing this, Ain quietly swallowed his saliva.
“… You can’t use other magic? For example, intermediate magic.”
“… It’s fine if you can’t use it now. We can help you to gain levels, then you can learn intermediate magic…”
“I don’t intend to learn any skill that does not boost Explosion magic.”
“…… ……” X4
Receiving my immediate response, the four of them finally became silent.
“Uh. Our party members feel that it is sufficient to earn some money by fighting weak monsters. As of now, we have no plans to challenge powerful monsters. I’m sorry. Can you find another party…?”
—After receiving today’s reward and saying goodbye to them, I dragged my tired body along and was troubled.
Could it be that I was not a genius after all?
Was I a kid whom nobody wanted?
… No. There’s no need for panic yet.
I was in the city for only three days.
—I drank the drink given by Rhodes and recovered my wits. I searched for Yunyun, who should be searching for party members like me. She was still in the same seat as this morning, playing a board game by herself.
I walked over to Yunyun and tapped her shoulder from behind.
“He-Hello!? Welcome. My name is Yunyun. My job is arch wizard, but I can use only intermediate magic…”
Yunyun said quickly as she turned around. Upon seeing my face, she looked disappointed.
“What is this attitude!? I came over because you were so pitiful while playing alone in the corner of the tavern!”
… I thought no adventurer would come over after seeing her notice.
I sat opposite Yunyun and rearranged the game pieces on the game board.
“Ah, wait. Really. I was playing half-way…”
Yunyun complained, but she smiled happily.
We played the board game as we chatted.
“Megumin, have you found some party members?”
“No. I went along with a party for quest today, but there wasn’t any party that could utilize me properly.”
“Is that so? As for me, there was only an uncle who drank beer early in the morning. He said, ‘I’m a non-combatant. If that’s okay, I will join.’ I considered it for a while, but I felt that it would be pointless if it wasn’t an adventurer’s party. So I declined… Checkmate.”
“No. Just reject it without considering! Why do you always attract such uncles? I’m really worried… Even if they try to pick you up, don’t follow them blindly. Teleport.”
“I won’t follow them. I’m not Megumin who would be hooked by a meal… Okay, your turn.”
“I won’t be hooked by a mere meal. You wait and see. A few days later, I will fight some fierce criminals…!”
In the corner of the noisy tavern, we grumbled to each other as we moved the game pieces about.
“Upon seeing our crimson eyes, adventurers should be rushing over to invite us to their parties. This is truly the City of Rookie Adventurers. Don’t they know anything about the Crimson Magic Clan?”
“Maybe existing parties do not lack wizards… But the school taught us that wizards and priests are fairly rare. Maybe we are being avoided because of our age… Checkmate.”
“Ugh. If I retreated here, that sword master would rush forward. This square is within the shooting range of that archer… So teleport there… There aren’t many wizards in the city, so there should be some demands.”
There were some people who avoided our gazes after seeing our crimson eyes.
But none of them came to talk.
Was it really as Yunyun said? Were we being avoided because we were too young?
“Although teleport is very annoying, this should be the end! You are careless just because adventurer is the weakest game piece. Level this adventurer piece to become sword master! Good, now the die is cast!”
I used the special skill of the arch wizard piece to flip the board over and sighed deeply.
Could I find companions tomorrow?
“Megumin, another game! Let’s play another game! The rules said Explosion can only be used once per day, so I will win in the next game! …Hey, where are you going? Don’t run off after winning!”
I thought about today’s events as I was on my way back to the hotel.
Today, I experienced my second party.
Was a wizard who could only use Explosion magic really that undesirable?
No, no, no. A party that specialized in hunting weak monsters really would not require such a wizard, but if it was an elite adventurer, or…
Right. For a party that specialized in high reward quests and a party that fought in the frontline to defeat the demon king, I must be necessary.
There must be some in this city.
Adventurers who aimed to defeat the demon king.
As I thought about this and dragged my tired body along the street, I heard an imposing cry—
“Don’t miss out on this! Welcome and take your pick of fresh bananas just caught from the river! Only 300 eris! Only 300 eris. Want some!?”
“Get some! …Eh. Hey, what did you just say? Did you say bananas that were caught from the river?”
In front of the fruit store were a brown-haired guy and a blue-haired girl who was holding a fan.
It seemed I frequently encountered them.
“Come and see! Now only 300 eris! Two bunches for 600 eris! …That’s what it should be, but listen! Two bunches should be 600 eris, but there is a special discount now! Only 500 eris! It’s a very good deal!”
“Ver-Very good deal! …Hey, did you say earlier that the bananas were caught from the river…”
It seemed this duo that was fired from the tavern was starting a new job selling things.
As if excited by the gathering crowd, the blue-haired girl raised her voice and knocked the table with her fan.
“Good. Don’t miss out on this opportunity! Next, these bananas will vanish with a curse!”
“Hey, hey. Can you really do that!? There are so many people here. What are you going to do if you fail!?”
I was interested in the blue-haired girl’s words, so I stayed and watched.
“No secret device and no tricks! I will merely cover the banana with this cloth! Then chant ‘Vanish!’ Vanish, vanish… Okay, look!”
I cried out in surprise along with the watching crowd.
“What is with that girl! I have never seen such a good performer!”
“Hey, I will buy one! One bunch of banana!”
“Ah, I want to buy too!”
“Me too! I want two bunches!”
The audience changed into customers and rushed to the blue-haired girl.
“Thank you very much! Hey, if this carries on, it will be so easy! Okay, bring out the vanished banana! We will have a great sale!”
The brown-haired guy said happily, but the blue-haired girl showed a puzzled expression.
“What are you saying? The banana have vanished, so it isn’t here anymore. Okay, bring out some new bananas to sell!”
“Ah!? No, I don’t understand what you mean! What do you mean by ‘Vanish’? How can the banana just vanish!? Hey, where did you hide it? Stop joking and take it quickly!”
“I’m not joking. I said there is neither secret device nor tricks. Quickly bring out the bananas for sale and for the vanishing performance.”
“Stop fooling me. It’s afternoon already, so stop dreaming!”
Before the customers, both of them were tapped on the shoulders from behind.
The fruit store owner was standing there with a hard expression.
“Hey, please wait. It has nothing to do with me!? She’s the one who made the bananas vanish!”
The blue-haired girl cried in grievance, while the brown-haired guy tried his best to explain.
After seeing their farce, I felt silly being troubled, so I turned my back on them and returned to the hotel.
I sat in the corner of the Adventurer’s Guild, and repeatedly looked at the party recruitment notice board with a sense of unease.
Megumin, my fri… rival who traveled with me so far, had found a party and left to do a quest.
On our first day as adventurers, our distance had widened.
Although Megumin was petty, bad tempered, and had a weird perception, she still had considerable social skills.
After living so long, the thing I talked most to was the marimo2 reared at home.
It was too difficult to talk to strangers. I simply couldn’t do it.
Therefore, I posted a notice at the party recruitment notice board…
“…! I see it! Someone just looked at my notice!!”
Looking in the direction of the notice board, I saw a small adventurer’s party reading my notice.
Maybe these people would accept me as a companion. How should I greet them? I’m so stupid. I never thought of how to greet them until now. I should keep to the order of name, job, and skill…!
As I was getting hot-blooded, those people pointed at the notice and nodded. They looked around happily, as if looking for someone…
Meeting my eyes, they trembled.
Finally, this small party shrank and left hurriedly.
It seemed they were not recruiting…
But no problem. The notice clearly stated the job of arch wizard…
If I waited, surely some adventurers…!
—Did not come at all.
Some other people read the notice later, but for some reasons, they left without saying anything after seeing me.
… At this time, an elder sister with spectacles came over to my table.
“Uh, uh… Excuse me.”
“Ah, yes! What is it!? My name is Yunyun. My job is arch wizard, but I can only use intermediate magic. Sorry, but no problem. I can learn advanced magic soon!”
“No, no. I’m a staff of the Adventurer’s Guild! Sorry, I didn’t come over because of the recruitment notice!”
She seemed to be a guild staff.
“Uh, did something happen? Was there a problem with my recruitment notice…?”
“No. Although I thought there’s a problem with the way it was written… A lot of people complained that whenever they read the notices, a girl will stare really hard at them. They felt it was very scary…”
It was a misunderstanding! It was because I was very concerned.
“I know that very few adventurers are considered worthy of a Crimson Magic Clansman, but please don’t glare with your crimson eyes at those that don’t meet your criteria. It’s somewhat scary…”
Wrong! A Crimson Magic Clansman’s eyes would glow crimson only when excited!
I was excited because there was someone coming.
“…So-Sorry. I will take note of it…”
Hearing my reply, the staff breathed a sigh of relief and left.
… People were afraid of me. I was kind of hurt.
As I laid my head on the table slightly dejectedly…
“I heard you are 13-year-old?”
I raised my head and looked.
“Uncle… Wrong, I’m 13-year-old too! You are looking for a frontline job? Leave it to unc—me… I’m a high level crusader! I will protect you, my little sister!”
No matter how I looked, he seemed to be over 40-year-old. The heavily armored uncle panted and said quickly…
“…Uh, uh, let’s chat.”
The uncle cried out in surprise, even though he was the one who initiated the conversation.