“Karaboshi. Karaboshi.”

Karen was tapping him on the shoulder.

“You’re going too hard on the poor girl.”

“…Hmm.”

Adventurers were always facing death.

You were always risking your life when going into the dungeons.

But that didn’t mean they would risk their lives all of the time without question.

There is someone I want to save. So give me your life.

And if you don’t, you are nothing but a cruel-hearted person.

That was what Akane was saying. And Haruki was not amused.

And so he rejected the request.

Haruki had decided that the only time he would put his life on the line to save others, was when they were civilians and within his reach.

Perhaps it would be more humane to increase that range.

However, there were many too many lives he couldn’t save at this point.

He needed to hold back, or the weight of reality would crush him.

But…it was true that he was also being too harsh.

He was being childish.

Haruki bit his lower lip as he realized this.

“Are you sure that you can’t help her?”

“Hmm…”

Being away from Rhea for a whole month…

Perhaps it was written on his face. While Karen seemed less than pleased, she whispered to Haruki.

“Just take it if you don’t want to leave it here. It’s not like you can’t move the thing, right?”

“…Ah. That’s true.”

She was in a planter, so he could carry her wherever he wanted.

Karen’s suggestion did make a lot of sense.

And just like that, the biggest issue that had been holding Haruki back was solved.

In that case, he could search the 8th floor of Chikaho for a month.

He would be able to level up and be rewarded for it. It was perfect.

There was no way that he would reject it now.

“Alright. I’ll accept your request, Akane.”

“Really!?”

“However, aside from the reward money, you have to cover for a month’s expenses.”

“Obviously. The reward is 300,000 yen. Even if you find her in 1 day or don’t find her in 30 days, you are guaranteed that much at least. But you will get an additional 200,000 yen if you do find her. So you could potentially make 500,000 in just one day. Lucrative, no?”

“I guess.”

It was average, maybe a little above average for a rescue mission on the upper floors.

However, he would also be losing money while he was away.

Perhaps Akane read his mind because she raised five fingers in the air.

“I’ll buy any materials you bring back with a 5% markup. Also, appraising of materials and maintenance fees will be free. And I will, of course, cover living, medial and food expenses. What do you think?”

“Sounds amazing.”

“Right? So…will you do it?”

Akane looked more serious than ever. And so Haruki nodded with an equally serious expression.

This person usually ranted about being the most beautiful and angelic woman. But for once, she was doing everything in her power to help someone else.

He wanted to do what he could in answer to her prayer.

Haruki was moved by Akane’s desperation, and he decided that he’d work hard to find this branch manager.

After Haruki and Karen left, Akane closed the cash register and sighed.

However, it was different from the sighs that had escaped her during the last few days. This one was incredibly warm.

“I’m so glad that someone is going to look for that idiot…”

Really, she was so stupid. Akane muttered to herself. But in spite of the prickliness of her words, her expression was soft.

The Sapporo store manager–Oiso Saika. She had gone into the dungeon herself, as she was unable to get enough Silver Wolf materials from the Adventurers.

As Ichibishi did business with rough Adventurers, their employees had to undergo some training.

However, this training was more for their own protection, it was not so they could go out and gather materials themselves.

So she had gone out and done something that was not part of her job and then got lost on top of that.

She was so dumb, Akane thought.

If you sowed your seeds right, you could easily gather Silver Wolf materials from Adventurers.

The fact that Oiso had been incapable of doing this proved that she wasn’t much of an employee.

Not only that, but Akane had also been buying a lot of Silver Wolf materials in K-town, and had plenty of stock left.

However, no matter how many times she said she would transport the products, Oiso would not listen.

Had she sent them, there would have been no need to go and hunt Silver Wolves.

Perhaps her pride had gotten in the way.

So stupid.

So very stupid.

Stupid! Stupid!

“Heh…hehe…”

But it was because of such fools like her, that employees that were overflowing with talent were able to shine!

In other words, Oiso was the darkness.

A being who allowed Akane to shine even brighter!

Her disappearance was a great loss to the world! (Akane’s world)

“I won’t let you die!! So you better stay alive. You’re good at being stubborn, after all. Air is going to go and help you now! —You’re so useless! Hehehe!!”

How would she mock her once she returned?

It was with such thoughts that Akane worked. She was now completely back to her old self.

Like this, she desperately played the fool in order to forget that horrible possibility.

…Probably.

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