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Let’s be an Adventurer! ~Defeating Dungeons with a Skill Board~ 160

 

Let’s Find the Stray Air!

 

 

“…Huh?”

 

Haruki was greatly confused by the sight of the fleeing golem.

 

He had been taking attack after attack from that same golem.

He was sure that golem was going to kill him.

 

His body was tattered, and even his armor –a middle-class breastplate– had been torn to shreds.

 

Despite that, Haruki was currently just barely injured.

He had been seriously injured, but those injuries had been instantly healed.

 

It was all thanks to Maat, who had stayed inside Haruki’s Kokko Feather Necklace.

Every time Haruki would be injured, Maat would use her healing magic to patch him up immediately.

 

“Like an auto-recovery system, huh!?”

 

Haruki was overjoyed to find Maat could do that, but it seemed that it wasn’t something that could be used too often.

Apparently, healing magic consumed much more energy than Karen’s offensive magic.

After healing Haruki, Maat laid down to rest inside the feather necklace.

 

Haruki stroked her head with his fingertips as she trembled where she rested.

 

While he was being healed by Maat, Haruki tried his best to understand the golem’s movements.

 

He had determined himself to never again receive an attack he had already been hit with, and he had succeeded.

 

Haruki had been able to accumulate some valuable battle experience, which he had proven to have an overwhelming lack of during this fight.

Although it had been a rough path that had had him at death’s doors way too many times over the course of the fight, Haruki was learning new movements because of it.

 

To show the maximum power using as little power as possible.

It was a fusion of Shigure’s swordsmanship and Masatsugu’s own battle style.

 

It linked each bone and muscle of his whole body toward the desired result.

 

It worked under the same principle as the fact that one would take more damage by unconsciously hitting the corner of the chest drawer with your little toe than by consciously kicking the same corner of the same chest drawer.

When the movements of the muscles and skeleton are linked, a more powerful force could be put into motion even with the same movement.

 

Both Shigure and Masatsugu were able to do this.

However, Shigure specialized in PvP fencing, and Masatsugu specialized in his anti-monster battle style.

 

Haruki combined both of them in order to create a short-sword oriented battle style.

It incorporated the best of both Shigure and Masatsugu’s own styles.

 

However, Haruki could only grasp the basics of both styles yet.

It would take some time to perfect it.

 

Even so, the difference in strength with the Golem was as close to zero as possible.

 

At last.

With this, I’ll get a stronger presence!

 

Just as he thought about that…

 

“…But why are you running away? Hey! Wasn’t this a test to give me a strong presence!?”

 

A test that ran away from those who were taking it was unheard of.

But Haruki then reconsidered, thinking that maybe that was exactly how the test worked…

 

(Maybe I need to make a display of presence by catching this golem!?)

 

Or maybe catching the golem would give him some kind of magic item that would increase his presence…

 

“Uhuh…”

 

Haruki smiled, picturing the heyday of his presence in his mind.

 

“Wait, golem! I’ll show you the power of my presence right now!!”

 

Surrounding his entire body with energy, Haruki broke into a run.

 

He was running faster than ever.

That was a result of him optimizing his movements during his fight with the golem.

 

Furthermore, the gap in his bodily sensation due to the rapid level-up had been almost completely eliminated.

Now, Haruki could understand how much power his body could exert.

 

While running at his maximum speed, Haruki took out the Skill Board.

 

 

Karaboshi Haruki (27) Gender: Male

Skill Points: 13

Class: Hidden Sword King

Divine Protection: Overthrowing God <Medjed>

 

-Vitality <->

├ Stamina 4 → 5

└ Natural Recovery 3

 

-Strength <->

├ Strength 5

└ Body Handling 0 → 1 NEW

 

-Energy <->

├ Energy Power 2 → 3

├ Energy Capacity 5

├ Energy Manipulation 2

└ Exhaustion Resistance MAX

 

-Agility <+2>

├ Quickness 6

└ Dexterity 5

 

-Technique <->

├ Equipment Mastery

│├ One-handed Sword 5 → 6

││└ Short Sword 0 → 1 NEW

│├ Throwing 2

│└ Light Armor Mastery 5

├ Kicking 4

├ Stealth 5

└ Imitation 4 → 5

 

-Intuition <->

└ Detection 5

└ Weakness Exploit MAX

 

-Special

├ Growth Acceleration MAX

├ Taming 2

├ Divine Protection MAX

└ Divine Energy MAX

 

 

“Whoa! It’s looking good…”

 

There had been a great change in Haruki’s movements during his fight with the golem.

Those changes had been reflected in his skill tree.

 

By enduring the Golem’s attack, he gained Stamina and Energy Power, and he became able to reproduce the movements of both Shigure and Masatsugu at a higher level, which increased his Imitation.

 

By imitating Masatsugu’s movements, he was able to learn the Body Handling skill that he possessed.

 

The rise of his One-Handed Swords skill was a result of that imitation.

Then, by changing the high-level movements he copied and adapting them to use them with a short sword, he acquired the Short Sword skill.

 

Haruki had grown a little jealous of Karen’s growth, which had caused him to feel a little anxious, but now he had finally gotten some progress on his skills, plus he even obtained new ones.

 

This was the result of steady accumulation of efforts.

 

He had kept piling up efforts day after day, without feeling discouraged even if there didn’t seem to be any results.

Haruki’s efforts hadn’t been in vain.

 

I’m glad I never gave up, even if it all seemed to be useless at first.

Haruki felt greatly relieved.

 

He had improved his skills so much, but even then it didn’t seem to be enough to defeat the golem.

He had no way to deliver a decisive strike through its hard defenses.

 

So Haruki stared at the Skill Board.

He had to get the power to defeat that golem.

 

 

Karaboshi Haruki (27) Gender: Male

Skill Points: 13 → 0

Class: Hidden Sword King

Divine Protection: Overthrowing God <Medjed>

 

-Vitality <->

├ Stamina 5

└ Natural Recovery 3

 

-Strength <->

├ Strength 5

└ Body Handling 1

 

-Energy <->

├ Energy Power 3

├ Energy Capacity 5

├ Energy Manipulation 2

└ Exhaustion Resistance MAX

 

-Agility <+2>

├ Quickness 6

└ Dexterity 5

 

-Technique <->

├ Equipment Mastery

│├ One-handed Sword 6

││└ Short Sword 1 → MAX

│├ Throwing 2

│└ Light Armor Mastery 5

├ Kicking 4

├ Stealth 5

└ Imitation 5

 

-Intuition <-> → <+3>

└ Detection 5

└ Weakness Exploit MAX

 

-Special

├ Growth Acceleration MAX

├ Taming 2

├ Divine Protection MAX

└ Divine Energy MAX

 

 

First of all, he added 4 points to his new Short Sword skill to bring it to MAX in order to boost his proficiency with his weapon of choice.

 

At first, Haruki was unable to damage the golem, but after some time passed, he managed to slightly scratch the surface of the golem’s tough body.

That was a result of him acquiring the Short Sword skill.

 

For that reason, MAXing out the skill should allow him to damage the golem even further.

 

Next, he spent 9 points into his Intuition tree to raise it to +3.

This would further improve the accuracy of Weakness Exploit.

 

Haruki hadn’t been able to see the golem’s weak spot until the very end.

It was as if it didn’t have any physical weak points.

But every material thing could be broken.

It wasn’t that it didn’t have a weak spot, but rather, it was simply too difficult to find.

 

For that reason, Haruki enhanced his Intuition tree by 3 points, so that he could be able to detect its weak spots more effectively.

 

This decision was mostly a bet, but even if he still wasn’t able to detect its weak spots through his improved Weakness Exploit, he could use his basic skills to defeat the golem, although it would take some time.

 

“I’m getting closer to the end of this hidden room… Huh?”

 

When the dim light of the room revealed a wall in front of Haruki’s field of view, his eyes suddenly caught something moving there.

It fluttered and bounced a little as if it was trying to be noticed.

 

That thing was…

 

“Rhea! Esta!”

 

After realizing who they were, Haruki couldn’t help but call out their names loudly.

 

When he thought he was going to die, Haruki tried to at least make sure Rhea and Esta escaped to safety.

He had never imagined finding them there.

 

He had thought that they would have already found their way back to Karen by now.

 

(The golem ran this way, too… I’m glad they’re safe.)

 

Haruki breathed out a sigh of relief.

They could have ended up having to battle that dreadful golem.

But luckily, that didn’t happen.

Perhaps it was thanks to that magic tool they had that they were able to hide safely while the golem went past them without noticing them.

 

As she noticed Haruki, Rhea skillfully used her leaves to “walk” towards him while holding Haruki’s backpack.

 

She was holding the backpack in front of her body.

The backpack had that white noh mask –a magic tool that can hide one’s presence– attached to it.

 

Rhea had wrapped one of her vines around the mask so that it wouldn’t fall from the backpack.

 

Since her body could be seen through a little, it looked like the white mask had overgrown with grass as it moved while swaying its body left and right.

And it was approaching Haruki while making a fluttering noise.

 

It looked like a scene taken out of a horror movie.

 

(Oohh…)

 

He knew that it was Rhea, but Haruki still put himself on guard.

 

Esta appeared from behind Rhea, and tried to overtake her.

 

He would have had no problem doing so, since Rhea was, after all, a potato plant who struggled to walk using her leaves, and was carrying a backpack to boot.

However…

 

*–Bonk!*

 

Rhea sniped Esta as he tried to overtake her.

After being hit by the potato stone, Esta was sent flying away, drawing a large arc.

 

Then, after landing, Esta started dragging his feet while having a sad expression on his face.

…Though he hadn’t taken any damage.

 

Right after attacking Esta, Rhea jumped towards Haruki as if nothing had happened.

 

*Pat pat pat pat*

Rhea patted Haruki’s thighs with a little more strength than usual.

 

While frowning at the pain, Haruki gently stroked Rhea’s leaves with his fingertips.

Then, Esta clung to Haruki’s back.

He began checking on Haruki’s body with his feelers.

 

“Ahaha… Esta, that tickles…”

 

Haruki let himself be jostled by his two friends for a bit.

Neither of them was going easy on him.

That’s how worried the two of them had been about Haruki.

 

With a hint of pain, Haruki was able to understand the feelings of those two.

If he had been in their position, and a loved one were to do something like that to him, he would never forgive himself for leaving them to their fate.

 

(I’m sorry…)

 

Haruki apologized from the bottom of his heart while gently petting his two friends.

He was proud to be so important to both of them.

 

“Alright!”

 

After a little while, Haruki put his backpack back on with Rhea in it, and had Esta latch onto his abdomen.

 

It seemed that both of them had noticed what Haruki was planning to do next.

There was a serious atmosphere around them, though neither of them were thinking about blaming him for it.

 

“Let’s go!”

 

Let’s go get that golem!

 

*Pat pat*

*Squirm squirm*

 

In response to Haruki’s shout of encouragement, his two small friends excitedly raised their leaves and feelers at the same time.

 

* * * * * * * * *

 

After Air vanished, Van and Karen started to search for him.

 

Van thought that Air would be fine, but they were still inside a dungeon.

The worst-case scenario could happen.

 

Besides, Karen had become terribly upset the moment Air disappeared.

If Van were to leave her alone, she would have gone to search for him all by herself.

 

Karen was still an 18-year-old girl.

She was also a seemingly frail girl.

Van couldn’t abandon such a girl just because she was on another team.

 

Van led the way through the forest of the 19th floor.

The Bloody Owls, who attacked them from time to time, were easily dealt with by Van.

 

Karen was amazed at his battle style, but Van was, after all, a senior adventurer.

He was also a former member of Team Aerial who had dived to the 27th floor of “Chikaho”.

 

No matter how weak he could have considered himself to be, Van wasn’t that weak that he wouldn’t be a match for the enemies on the 19th floor.

 

Van and Karen searched for Air on the outer side of the 19th floor.

But they couldn’t find him.

 

An hour passed, then two hours.

Time went by mercilessly.

 

There was no sound.

There were no signs of him.

(Not that Air was someone whose signs were easily found…)

 

Aside from that, the clock was ticking.

 

(Maybe Air is already…)

 

As that thought began to cross his mind, he heard a rumbling sound coming from afar.

 

“What was that sound?”

 

Eager to find some clue about Air’s whereabouts, the two of them reacted quickly to that noise.

 

Van took up the magic battle ax, and Karen held tight to her staff.

 

“Awawa!? I-I have a bad feeling about this…”

 

A hand-sized salmon scurried back into Karen’s pocket.

 

“…”

“…”

 

Two sets of eyes stared coldly at the salmon.

 

“Is that salmon useful for anything?”

“…Kind of?”

 

Karen shrugged in response to Van’s inquisitive look.

(So it’s basically useless, huh?)

 

Was there any benefit to keeping that salmon with them?

Or was it nothing but a curse laid upon a bracelet?

 

Given the nature of Air’s team, Van was half convinced that it was probably the latter.

 

He was very curious about where they had gotten that salmon, but it was generally rude to ask about gear and individual abilities.

Van really wanted to ask her, but he endured the urge.

 

That sound was more important at that time.

That sound that was shaking the bottom of his stomach echoed throughout the 19th floor.

 

The 19th floor was about 6 times larger than the 1st floor.

For example, if the first floor was about the size of Hakkeijima Sea Paradise, the 19th floor would be as large as Disneyland.

 

How loud would a sound have to be to echo throughout the entirety of Disneyland?

That’s how unusual that sound was.

 

Van stood ready, holding the battle ax with two hands.

 

(This is bad…)

 

The sound was definitely heading towards them.

At this rate, the sound’s source will eventually reach them.

Should we run or fight?

 

As he stood there doubting, the sound’s source finally reached them.

 

“…A golem!?”

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