My【Repair】Skill Became an Almighty Cheat Skill, So I Thought I’d Open Up a Weapon Shop
「Why… Things look quite different around here now.」
Sakura said with surprise as she looked at the base being built on the fifth floor of『Sundial Forest』.
Some time has passed since the meeting, and the forest base of Hollowbottom Fort was nearly done.
I finished doing【Repair】on pretty much all of the buildings, so all that was left was to set up the interiors and the equipment.
Orders were flying out from the knights, while the E-rank adventurers who were hired ran back and forth.
At the rate things were going, the base should be functional by tomorrow.
「Luke-dono, will you be working here today as well?」
「No, my job on this side is complete. Starting today, I have to work on the underground side. See, the building remains over there will be moved there to be【repaired】.」
I pointed at the wagon carrying a large amount of rubble being carried away.
The wagon will go through 『the dragon’s cave』to get to the underground space, and then I’ll go【repair】the rubble back into buildings.
「I see, we will be heading the same way then. I was asked to explore the『Territory of the Demon King』and to help secure the area.」
「The『Territory of the Demon King』, huh… We’ve been calling it the『underground space』all this time, so it feels a little strange.」
「I believe you will get used to it soon.」
Sakura and I headed past the base gate, and went up to a large staircase that was placed outside.
The『dragon’s cave』which the dragons and Noire came from was positioned on the precipitous cliff that connected the fourth and fifth floors.
Right now, there was a large suitcase leading up to the hole with equipment and cargo set around it, making the tense atmosphere disappear.
「Alright, let me see your entry permit!」
Above the stairs a few steps into the hole was a person doing inspections on those entering and exiting.
The inspector wasn’t a regular adventurer, but rather an office clerk that either the guild or the knights had dispatched.
「By the way, Luke-dono, if I remember correctly, there was supposed to be a trap door which sealed the entrance of the cave… However, I do not see anything resembling it.」
「Actually, a lot has happened, and, well…」
Just thinking about the trouble with the trap door caused me to have a bitter smile.
「Based on the results found by the technicians and alchemists who were dispatched by the guild and the palace, we discovered that the trap door was triggered by the destruction of the walls within『Hade’s Millenium Corridor』.」
Whoever made the dungeon a long time ago built a sturdy labyrinth to prevent any intruders from entering the underground space.
In order to counter the intruders attempting to brute force their way through by destroying the walls, the creator of the labyrinth set up an automatic system that releases dragons to the surface if that occurred.
At least, that’s what the technicians hypothesized.
Of course, a theory remains a theory. There was no proof.
Some of the alchemists believed that Demon King Gandalf was the one who set up the labyrinth, and not only was he trying to protect the underground space, but he was trying to prevent people from mining the mithril.
In the end, nobody knew what was true.
If the alchemists’ theory was correct, then we might be able to get the truth out of the demon king once he is defeated. However, that probably won’t happen anytime soon.
「Even if we don’t know why such a mechanism was made, at least we know what causes the trap door to activate… And so, our next challenge was suppressing it.」
「Indeed. If the trap door cannot be opened and closed freely, this path would not be convenient.」
「They were all stumped by it, actually. The research they did didn’t exactly help.」
As we descended through the『dragon’s cave』which had been refitted with a well-paved path, I told Sakura the things that happened before.
Of course, I didn’t tell her anything that was considered confidential. I thought about the content carefully before saying anything.
「All sorts of ideas were thrown around, including one where I【disassemble】every single wall, but obviously I rejected that one. I refuse to be treated as a trap door lever.」
「…Ah, I see. Could it be that you【disassembled】the trap door instead, Luke-dono?」
「Correct. His Majesty ran out of patience and ordered me to destroy the trapdoor, since we couldn’t get it to work ourselves. We did keep the remains of it so that I can【repair】it anytime, but as of now, this is just a cave with no door.」
From a defensive point of view, it would be better to keep the door intact.
However, since we couldn’t control the trap door ourselves, His Majesty suggested that we replace it with a new door later on.
As Sakura and I continued our conversation, we reached the end of the hilled path, which was also where the cave ended.
「Beyond this point is the『Territory of the Demon King』…Just what sort of place is it?」
「This is your first time here, isn’t it? I haven’t come to this side since I【disassembled】that massive trap door. It’s quite the view.」
We exited the cave, revealing a stretching scenery that you would never imagine existed below the earth’s surface.
A rocky terrain and barren wasteland as far as the eye can see.
A rock ceiling that cast light down, making it easy to mistake it for the sky.
A flowing river gushing down a valley.
The『dragon’s cave』connected to the rocky mountain side of the underground space, and the valley separated the area. On the other side of the river were mines being developed for the demons.
However, due to the size of the underground space, it was difficult to view all of the area with just the naked eye.
「I have no words… To think that such a space exists underneath the earth…」
「There are many dungeons that resemble the surface, but rarely are there large-scale ones like this.」
Opinions were divided among the people at the base on whether Demon King Gandalf knew about the cave.
However, considering the size of the underground space, it should be fine to assume that even the demon king did not know everything about it.
「By the way, Luke-dono, this is where the dragons live, correct? I haven’t felt the presence of one since we came here though.」
「Oh, one of the reasons is because of that.」
There was a translucent pale green stone monument-like object positioned in each corner of the planned base.
「Those barrier stones are extra large in size. With four of those, even dragons wouldn’t be able to get close that easily.」
「Barrier stones… This is the first time I’ve seen them myself.」
Sakura went right up to the wall where one of the barrier stones was set, and was fixated on it.
「I’ve heard of stones that ward off monsters before, but I’ve rarely met adventurers who carried one around. Are they considered a rare item?」
「Not only are they a consumable item, only certain alchemists can synthesize them. There are limitations on the usage of barrier stones, so they’re rarely used except for in times like these.」
There are limitations regarding the usage of barrier stones.
A barrier stone can only activate in lands full of mana, and the stone itself has to be installed onto the surface.
Although, surface doesn’t exactly mean the stone has to touch the ground directly. It can be placed on a platform or on the floor of the labyrinth, and it’ll still work.
However, if a human or a living being were to hold it, the barrier stone would stop working.
Also, if for any reason the stone gets moved, the link it has with the mana would get cut off.
In other words, one cannot use the barrier stone by carrying it around.
「I see. Barrier stones are meant for protecting bases and camps then. Well then, what is the other reason?」
Right as I was about to answer Sakura’s question, a dragon flew across the base, roaring.
Its body was torn into pieces in an instant, causing blood and guts to rain down into the valley.
「Just now, I thought I saw someone on the back of the dragon…」
「That guy’s the other reason; Theodore Beaufort, the dragon slayer. Despite being born a noble, he became an adventurer because he wanted to kill dragons. He’s quite weird in that sense.」
Theodore was one of the high-ranking adventurers that I called for.
Although we weren’t exactly friends, as soon as I told him that there were dragons here, he came over faster than anybody else.
「Alright, let’s get to work here. Once we finish the base here, I’m going to take it easy with my weapon shop for sure.」
「Despite that, you’ve been rather happy since earlier. Did the view of the unknown land stimulate you?」
「Stimulate, huh… Not really, actually. I just remembered about my initial goals, that’s all.」
Sakura left to do her patrolling quest, and I began working on fixing the buildings for Hollowbottom Fort.
Once the base here is done, Greenhollow Town and『Sundial Forest』should be safe again.
As for what I’ll do afterwards… I’ll think about it when the time comes.
I believe this will be the last chapter before entering the climax of arc 1.