The struggles of that Hero
Editing: Ulti, LordVTP, Xenthur, Deus Ex Machina
“That adventure was really awesome, wasn’t it? I didn’t expect Kazuma to be that amazing.”
I was drinking with my companions at our usual spot in the guild, and they’ve been talking about nothing but that.
Seeing Lynn sing Kazuma’s praises all bright eyed and bushy tailed irritates me a little.
“He was really quick-witted, wasn’t he? Just thinking back to it gives me chills.”
“To think that I looked down on him for being an Adventurer. He really showed us the breadth of his skills. I can’t believe Enemy Detection, Lurk, and Basic Magic are that useful when put together.”
Even Keith and Taylor are singing his praises.
I admit that Kazuma has his own problems. I’ve personally experienced just how troublesome those three beautiful girls next to him are, after all.
The one who manages them is Kazuma. There’s definitely no mistaking that.
Even so, leaving me aside to talk so animatedly about Kazuma rubs me the wrong way.
“The way he used Basic Magic really surprised me. I think I should be like Kazuma and learn Basic Magic as well. It should come in handy. Unlike some people who end up causing no end of problems despite being pretty strong, it’d be better to have someone like Kazuma in the party.”
Does Lynn admire Kazuma as a mage? What’s the point of learning Basic Magic when you already know Intermediate Magic?
“Having Kazuma around would definitely make things easier. Unlike someone who only appears in the fight against the Demon King’s General at the very last moment.”
Keith gave me a meaningful glance while fiddling with his bow.
I couldn’t help it, it was completely out of my control.
“I wonder if we can ask for another swap.”
Even Taylor is treating me like an unwanted child.
“What are you guys saying… Don’t look at me with such scorn. H-Hey, those weren’t jokes, you guys sounded pretty serious there. I can do it if the situation calls for it, you know!? It’s just that there hasn’t been a chance to demonstrate my true skills yet!”
“The chance… Come to think of it, why didn’t you show up for the Dullahan fight? And you looked really depressed after it too.”
“Don’t make me remember that… I’ll get depressed again.”
I lost 5 million in an instant. After that, when I tried to get a refund from that storekeeper, he called the police on me, and I even had to pay the price of the broken cart… Just remembering that makes me fume!
“Nevermind that, when are we going on our next quest? I don’t have money, so I wouldn’t mind heading out today.”
“Ah, I’ll be passing on such things for a while. Until winter is over, at the very least.”
“Yeah, all the strong monsters become active in winter. With the money we got from taking down the Demon King’s General, we’ll be fine even if we don’t take any quests this season.”
“Yeah. With that much money, I might just visit that place every day.”
Because Keith let his mouth slip, Lynn looked over with suspicious eyes.
That’s a secret place that we recently learned about that can never be made known to women. Taylor is a crusader who’s very inflexible in certain areas, so we kept it a secret from him too.
I’m obsessed with earning money because I want to visit that place.
“Nevermind that, do any of you guy have any intentions of going on a quest?”
Dammit, they refused immediately.
Even if I were to try and team up with someone else, all the adventurers here received the reward money for taking down the General. The only one who’s poor like me and interested in working is…
“Oh, hey there Kazuma. Are you heading out on a job?”
Reacting to Taylor’s words, I looked up to see Kazuma and his party.
I used to be jealous of the three beauties that surrounded him, but after going through all that, all I feel for him is sympathy.
“Yeah. Thanks to a certain priest, I’m buried in debts.”
“Are you saying I was in the wrong?! He was only defeated because of me, so you should be appreciating me more! Shower me with praise! Bring me some drinks and fried frog legs as thanks!”
“Shut up! Whose fault do you think it is that I’m struggling so hard right now?”
“You can scold me too, Kazuma. If the stress gets to you, I wouldn’t mind taking a severe tongue lashing or two.”
“I don’t need that kind of stress relief!”
“Well, I’ll be happy as long as I can set off my explosion magic, so I’m fine with going on adventures.”
“I’m begging you, please learn some other spells…”
He sure has his own troubles… Even though he’s pretty much the only one who’s having money issues like me, he’s probably too busy with his own issues to let us adventure together.
Plus, if I worked together with him and earned some money, it wouldn’t change the way my companions regard me at all.
“Then I’ll be seeing you.”
I didn’t move to stop Kazuma, and simply watched as he left.
Now, then, what should I do? My friends won’t be helping, and it’d probably be useless to ask the other adventurers. Then, all that’s left is to search for a quest that I’ll be able to do on my own.
“Ah, finding work by myself, huh. Do I really have no choice but to go alone? It’d be nice if some friends of mine are kind enough to help me out.”
I got up and pretended to stretch while giving my companions some meaningful looks, but all three of them refused to make eye contact with me.
“Right, shall we head back to the inn?”
“Don’t do anything stupid and earn some money properly, alright?”
“Sorry, you’ll have to enjoy this by yourself.”
Not a single one of them offered to help me. How cold can you guys be? I definitely won’t treat you guys if I make it big.
“Sigh, let me go check what requests are up.”
It’d be great if there’s a request that lets me earn money by sleeping and eating.
I went up to the notice board to check what was posted up there, but it seems like there are only harsh quests in the winter.
It’s all crazy stuff like hunting down a pack of one strike bears. Attempting those kinds of quests on my own might as well be suicide.
“Maybe there aren’t any good quests because the fee is high… Hmm? Is this an Orc extermination quest?”
Orcs are a race of pig faced demi-humans. If I recall correctly, the males were driven to extinction and now only female orcs exist. They are a scary race that will forcibly mate with males of other species that they capture until they manage to conceive a child.
I would gladly pay money for that kind of service if they were a race of beautiful girls, but they are a race of pig-faced women.
Normally, I wouldn’t want anything to do with them, but the reward they are offering is surprisingly good. It’s not like I can take on the other quests anyway, so I should at least hear the details.
I took down the request and brought it to ridiculously large breasted guild lady.
“Luna, can you tell me the details of this request? Also, can you let me fondle your breasts when I’m depressed?”
“Oh, Dust-san. How rare to see you accepting a quest. I thought you didn’t normally work in winter. Do you want me to call the cops?”
As expected of someone who deals with rowdy adventurers every day. It’s pretty impressive how she can say something so merciless without her smile even faltering.
“It’s just a little joke. I have a few expenses. I really don’t want to do this, but I do need to work.”
“I see, you arrived too late to participate in the General’s subjugation, so you didn’t receive any rewards. Err, that request is about the orc subjugation, right? It seems like orcs have been spotted close to a village nearby, and the village requested for them to be subjugated. The men of the village are too afraid to head out, so they are having some labour shortages.”
If you get caught by a female orc, you’ll be milked until you die. It’s an iron-clad rule for male adventurers to immediately run away if they encounter even a single orc.
Because they desire to mate with strong people in order to have strong offspring, it’s hard to scare them off with a show of strength.
“How many of them are there?”
“According to reports, there seem to be around ten of them.”
I might be able to handle one or two, but ten is way too many. No matter what I do, it’s impossible for me to handle that number alone. Plus, the consequences of failure are way too harsh.
“I think it’s best if I don’t accept this.”
“That’s a pity. There’s a secret spring known as the Spring of Beauty in that village. Maybe it’s due to that, but the village is full of beautiful girls. I wanted to make use of that spring too, but I just couldn’t take time off work, and it’s not like I could make use of it under such circumstances… Oh, yeah, it’s not exactly an additional reward, but they left a message to be relayed any adventurers willing to accept the quest. It seems like they are willing to host a welcoming party for them if the situation were to be resolved quickly.”
“Give me more details.”
As I was considering that request after hearing that story, I felt a couple of quick tugs on the sleeve of my shirt.
“Huh? Who are you?”
I turned around to find a small girl looking at me with upturned eyes.
“So, you finally resorted to kidnapping… Even though it pains me to put a price on the head of an adventurer, I must follow the guild’s procedures…”
“What are you talking about? I don’t know this little brat! Let go of me.”
“You look handsome, uncle. I’m not a little brat, I’m a young lady. You said orc subjugation earlier. Was that about my village?”
What’s with this brat? Is she from that village?
She might have come here with her parents to put up the request.
“Oh, isn’t she the daughter of the client?”
Seems like Luna recognizes her.
Seems like I had the right idea. Guess my intuition is still pretty accurate.
“I’m not an uncle, I’m a handsome onii-chan. If it’s about the village that’s troubled because a group of orcs moved close by, then that’s exactly it. Are you from the village, brat?”
“Yeah, uncle. I’m not a brat, I’m a young lady.”
“You are a brat, so stop being so persistent. Anyway, what about it?”
“You see, my father was attacked by the orcs. He managed to escape, but he’s locked himself in his room and refuses to come out. He keeps saying stuff like ‘I’m a regular person, stop!'”
I-I see. He went through a scary experience, huh. As a man, I sympathise with your dad.
He’s fortunate to have escaped, but I’ve heard that going through an experience like that is extremely traumatic.
“Mom’s been saying ‘Get a hold of yourself! You’re a man, aren’t you!? This is why we are poor! The guys at the bar hit on me the other day, you know!?’ and other stuff to encourage him, but he still refuses to come out.”
“I really sympathize with your dad… so, anyway, what about it?”
“You are going to subjugate the orcs, right, uncle? Then can you bring back my birthday present that my dad dropped when running away?”
“Hey, what do you think I am? I’m an adventurer. Defeating orcs is my job.”
“Then, please handle it, handsome onii-chan.”
Without hearing my reply, the girl ran back to someone who seemed to be her mother.
Children are so self-centered… well, I shouldn’t care too much about a little brat.
After accepting the quest, I moved to a place where I could calmly think about what I should do next.
I feel like I got tricked by Luna a little, but either way I still needed to accept the request. I can’t make use of that shop without money!
The place that Keith let slip was that succubus shop. The Succubus have a mutually beneficial relationship with the town of Axel. They allow male adventurers to fulfill their erotic desires by giving them sweet dreams, and in turn take only a small portion of vitality and a little bit of money.
We’ll feel refreshed, and the succubi will be able to obtain the vitality they need to live. It’s a mutually beneficial relationship. Pretty well thought out, isn’t it? That said, it would be problematic if it becomes known that we have dealings with devils, so the existence of the shop is a closely guarded secret known only to male adventurers.
Since it’s only a dream, any kind of erotic situation is allowed. I’ve been visiting that place every day since I learned of its existence, but right now I don’t even have that little bit of money.
“Female Orcs, huh. I don’t really want to fight them, but I don’t have much of a choice. I wonder if there’s a way to deal with them easily…”
“Come on, I’m seriously thinking about something here, so couldn’t you be more considerate and bring out some alcohol or something?”
“Stop joking. Why do you have to come sit in my shop every day? This isn’t your house, you know? Ahh, stop imprinting yourself on the things I’m planning to sell. It’s because you are here that I have no business.”
I’m just resting on a chair in the general store that nobody wants to buy. What a petty fellow he must be to get so worked up over that.
If you get angry over such a trifling matter, those few hairs left on your balding head is going to fall off.
“You don’t have any customers in the first place. I’ve yet to see any customers other than myself.”
“The other customers are afraid to visit because you are here. The reputation of my shop is getting worse and worse.”
“Hey, don’t blame your lack of business sense on someone else. If you want me to hurry up and leave, pay me a fee, or give me a good idea to take down Orcs.”
I doubt that the storekeeper of a general goods store will be able to give me any good ideas, but I’m completely stuck. Hearing what others have to say might lead to something.
“Pay you a fee… you really are a complete thug. Still, what’s that about taking down Orcs?”
“I accepted a quest to subjugate orcs. I’m wondering if there’s a way to easily beat all of them.”
“Just fight them up front and beat them normally… You shouldn’t have accepted the quest if you didn’t want to do that. If you didn’t, Mitsurugi-san might have ended up accepting it. The client would be cheering for joy if that happened.”
Mitsurugi again? I feel like I’ve been hearing about nothing but talk of Kazuma and Mitsurugi lately.
“Mitsurugi, huh. Come to think of it, he’s at fault for making me lose such a large fortune. I got blinded after receiving such a large sum at once, that’s why I ended up wasting it all.”
He probably wouldn’t have any problems taking down a horde of Orcs. The Orcs are also looking for strong mates to breed with, so it’s the perfect fit.
Hmm… Could I use him to fight the Orcs? He seems like the type of person who’d be easily fooled… If he ends up doing well, wouldn’t I be able to share a portion of the glory?
“Hey, what do you mean by fortune?”
“That’s my problem. Anyway, I thought of an extremely wonderful idea, so thanks.”
“Hearing you thank me just makes me feel uneasy…”
Now then, how do I get Mitsurugi to subjugate the orcs for me… According to what I’ve heard, he has a strong sense of justice and is kind to women, right? If I work on those two points, I might be able to get him dancing on the palm of my hand.
Sense of justice and women, huh. In that case, I maybe I should call her for help.
“… And that’s the story.”
“Just what exactly do you mean, Dust-san?”
After visiting the succubus shop that I often frequent and telling the story to the petite loli succubus that I’m acquainted with, that was her reaction.
This shop appears to be a normal cafe at first glance, but it’s in fact the best shop in the world that can grant the dreams of men.
This is a paradise as usual. Wearing only the barest bit of cloth to cover their important bits, the workers of the store go about their duties while boldly showing off their bodies.
Just looking at their tits and asses constantly jiggling as they walk makes me think that it’s worth coming out here.
“Like I said, you pretend to be a village girl and tearfully beg that Mitsurugi bastard for aid. Say ‘The men in the village have been taken by Orcs. Please save them.’ or something like that. I’ll think of the lines myself, so please help me.”
“I’m not asking about what I should do, but why should I do such a thing.”
Doesn’t seem like she’s too interested. But, that’s within my expectations. I didn’t expect her jump to accept my request right from the start.
Collecting information beforehand is only natural for adventurers. I’ve already done my homework on you.
“Hey, you feel ashamed over what happened with Kazuma, right? News of your failure has spread, so the number of people requesting your services has lessened, hasn’t it? It would benefit you if you were to help me on this job. I wouldn’t mind exclusively requesting for you in the future. If you want, I can also introduce you to people who lean towards lolis.”
“Gurk, how did you…”
Her face started wavering. I knew about that Kazuma incident, but it seems like everything else I haphazardly guessed at was on the mark too.
Well, I heard about the incident from Kazuma over a couple of drinks, but the one who ended up drunkenly spreading it to everyone was me.
“And Mitsurugi is a strait-laced person who isn’t troubled by a lack of women, so he wouldn’t visit here. There wouldn’t be a problem in deceiving someone who isn’t a customer. I’m quite well known amongst the adventurers, so I can put in a good word or two about you. It doesn’t sound like too bad a deal, doesn’t it? Learning how to trick men is a key component in crafting lewd dreams too,so, what do you think? Doesn’t it sound like a good chance to hone your talents and gain a step up over the other succubi?”
“That does sound appealing…a little…”
“If you leave it to me, you’ll definitely make it to being the number 1 succubus in this shop. I’m sure your co-workers and senpai will be singing high praises of you. Try imagining that wonderful future.”
“Number 1… I don’t have to be too ashamed to meet anyone’s eyes anymore…”
The loli succubus stared off into the distance with a dreamy expression, probably entranced in her imagination.
Right, then, just a little more…
“Yeah, I can definitely sense a great potential from you. With me as your producer, I can definitely take you to the top of the succubus stage! Just looking at you would leave them hopelessly entranced by your charm, the ultimate succubus!”
“Can I really?”
“Yes, you can! I can make you shine!”
Seems like she’s been affected by my passionate speech.
I’ve heard that succubi rank themselves based on how well they can charm men. It might be just a rumour, but every kind of community has their own hierarchy.
I feel like it would take just a little push to have her jump onto my plan.
“Go ahead and help him.”
The one who entered our conversation was the succubus who seemed to be the manager of the store.
Unlike the loli succubus, she has a wonderful body that almost makes me want to bury my face in her bosom. She’s as sexy as always.
Yeah, succubi need to have that kind of body. You just can’t get excited over a petite, flat as a board body like the one loli succubus has.
“Yeah, Dust-sama is one of our important customers. Please give him a hand.”
I didn’t expect her to help. As expected of the manager, she understands how to do business. I’ll have to visit this place more often in the future.
“I understand. I’ll lend you my aid, Dust-san. But don’t ask me to fight or anything, okay? We might be devils, but succubi don’t have any combat ability.”
“You’re a great help! Don’t worry, I won’t let anything lay a finger on you. Now then, shall we discuss the plans?”
I need to properly hash out the details of the scenario we are using to trick Mitsurugi. He doesn’t seem like he’d be too difficult to trick, but it’s best to be as prepared as possible.
While hiding next to the mountain trail, we kept an eye on our surroundings while going over the plan.
“Have you memorized your lines?”
“Perfectly! Thanks to everyone’s help, there wouldn’t be any problems with the acting either!”
She must be quite confident in herself to get all worked up like that.
Instead of the revealing costume that she normally wears, she’s currently wearing the clothes of a simple villager. No one should be able to tell that she’s a succubus like this.
“But, will Mitsurugi-san really pass by here?”
“Definitely. He seems to be infatuated with the blue haired priestess that usually hangs around Kazuma, so I asked a few friends of mine to spread some rumours that she ran into some kind of trouble around this mountain.”
“Er, the priest that usually hangs around with Kazuma? Ah, no, I’ll be purified…”
The loli succubus hugged her shoulders tightly and started trembling.
Did she suffer some kind of horrible trauma at the hands of that priest back when she failed in handling Kazuma’s request?
Priests are quite belligerent, so it’s certainly possible. Priests of the Axis Cult and the Eris Church in particular are known to be strongly opposed to devils.
“She’s not actually here, so calm down. Everything is counting on your acting, so please, don’t mess up.”
“Leave it to me! I won’t fail again! I definitely won’t fail a second time! I’m saying goodbye to the days where I have to be comforted and pitied by everyone!”
She seems strangely enthusiastic. Could it be that ‘failure’ is a taboo word for her?
Come to think of it, she did have a really strong reaction when I was talking about Kazuma earlier.
“Y-Yeah, I’m counting on you.”
In order to calm her nerves down a little, I gently patted her on the head.
The surprised loli succubus raised her head and looked up at me with slightly damp eyes. Hey, you didn’t fall for me just because I demonstrated a little bit of kindness, did you?
“Dust-san… Thinking that girls enjoy getting patted on the head is just the fantasy of virgins, you know?”
“Oh, shut up! If you are fine, then go prepare.”
She might look like a child, but she’s still a succubus. She’s not so simple when it comes to matters of love.
Well, I don’t really feel anything towards a childlike girl without a shred of sensuality in her body, so it doesn’t really matter.
“It’s rude to sigh after staring at a person’s body like that, you know? Did you fall for my charms?”
Not at all. At least, that was what I wanted to say, but managed to swallow those words at the last moment.
“Sorry, sorry. Oh, quiet down, I can hear footsteps.”
Hiding behind a large tree, I took out a small mirror to confirm the source of the footsteps on the mountain path.
Blue armour and a sword with a black sheath. Yeah, it’s Mitsurugi alright. He must have ran here. Frantically looking around as he moved along the path, he definitely looks like a suspicious person.
Doesn’t seem like his girls are with him. That’s convenient.
“Let’s make a slight change to the lines. Right here, you say…”
“Dust-san, you really have a bad personality. Are you sure you aren’t a devil?”
“Hey, don’t say such rude things. I’m just true to my desires. Anyway, it’s about time for you to shine. Go.”
“Okay, here I go!”
After giving me a quick salute, the loli succubus ran out onto the road.
The leaves that are stuck to her hair and body are in good condition. After frantically running through the woods, she chanced upon Mitsurugi; at least, that’s the scenario I set up.
Right now, everything is proceeding according to plan. As can be expected of a devil who can freely control a human’s dreams, she has some amazing acting ability. Way to go.
“P-Please help me!”
Mitsurugi caught the loli succubus who seemed like she could collapse at any moment.
Yes, now look at him with teary, upturned eyes! Oh, she even added the bit where she shakily reached out towards him… She seems like she’s really into it.
Her skirt is also rolled up just enough to expose her thighs. It’s quite impressive if she did that on purpose, but that’s just a coincidence, right?
“Th-the orcs in the village! They took all the men away! Please, save my people!”
What a convincing act. It seems like succubi also make for good actors.
“That’s… I’d really want to help you, but I’m in the middle of searching for Aqua-sama. I can’t possibly abandon her.”
“Aqua-sama? Are you referring to a beautiful priest with long blue hair?”
“Yes, exactly! Do you know her?”
That’s a good reaction. Yeah, it was a good idea to ask her to add this line to the script. He’ll definitely be hooked like this.
“Yes, after learning that our village was attacked, she immediately ran off to save them”
“As expected of her. She’s a prudent and beautiful woman alright. I was worried that she might receive some bad influence by staying by that man’s side, but…”
No, no, she’s always been like that. If anything, Kazuma is the one taking care of her. It seems like he respects her a lot, but to call her prudent… Were you dreaming or something?
Mitsurugi’s actions seemed to be ripped straight out of some kind of play. It’s almost like I’m watching a show at the theatre.
“So, where’s Aqua-sama!?”
“R-right here, the villagers wrote down the location of the orcs here after scouting out their nest.”
She took out a piece of paper from her pocket and handed it over to Mitsurugi. Of course, that map was made by me. I scouted out where the Orcs are in advance.
“I got it. Please rest assured. I’ll rescue both the villagers and Aqua-sama.”
He looks really dignified after boldly saying a line like that. That’s why handsome guys are…
He gently lowered Loli succubus to the ground, flashed her a charming smile, and ran off.
After confirming that Mitsurugi has vanished from my sight, I stepped out to meet with Loli succubus.
“Thank you, you did really well.”
“What do you think? I didn’t fail this time!”
“It was perfect. You could fool just about anyone with that performance.”
“Come on, you’re just exaggerating. Hehehe.”
Seems like she isn’t used to being praised. Her cheeks flushed red and she started shyly fidgeting from just a little complement. She really is simple.
Praising Loli succubus is very effective. I’ll need to make a note of this.
“Right, let’s go see how Mitsurugi does. It’d be best if he were to take all of them out, but it’d also be fine if he were to reduce their numbers before getting taken out. I’ll attack the orcs from behind when they are all focused on Mitsurugi.”
“I knew it, Dust-san really is a devil…”
If Mitsurugi really does get captured, I’ll save him before anything bad happens to him. I’m not that heartless. Though I wouldn’t mind if he ends up with a trauma of women after that incident.
Ignoring Loli succubus, who was keeping up with me while looking at me with a suspicious gaze, I continued running towards my destination.
As we neared the spot where the Orcs were, I slowed down my pace and moved to a hill with a good view of the area.
We crawled to the summit of the hill and stealthily poked our heads out to observe the scene below.
Mitsurugi is standing in the middle of the group of defeated Orcs. Did he defeat them all by himself? He seems to be breathing heavily, but he doesn’t have a single scratch on him.
Yeah, he’s strong alright.
“Aqua-sama! Where are you, Aqua-sama!?”
He shouted that while checking inside the tent that was set up there.
If I leave it as it is, he might end up visiting the village to ask questions. If that happens, all my schemes would be unraveled.
“Can I ask you to handle the rest?”
“Ah, just tell him that the villagers have been saved and Aqua-sama left, right?”
“Yeah, that’ll be fine.”
Spreading her wings from her back, she flew down to the path, just out of Mitsurugi’s sight, before running towards him. I couldn’t hear their words from here, but judging from his gestures and body language, it seems like he gets the gist.
Right, that takes care of things. Now all I have to do is collect proof of their extermination and search their nest for anything valuable.
After Mitsurugi left the place, I moved down to the camp and searched the corpses for anything valuable together with Loli succubus. After some time, I determined that we’ve gotten everything of worth and stretched my back.
“You sure put your all into searching. Orcs and the like don’t usually use any valuable equipment. Did you find anything good?”
“… Not at all. I thought that there’d be at least a little bit of gold in there, but there was nothing. Well, having Mitsurugi take them on sure made things easier for me.”
“That Mitsurugi-san person was really obsessed with Aqua-sama. It’s a little frightening.”
“Well, he must be a little knocked in the head to hold someone like her in such high regard.”
“-Why are you here?”
This familiar voice that suddenly shouted from behind me is…
I slowly turned around to see Mitsurugi glaring daggers at us with his arm outstretched.
“O-Oh, what a coincidence.”
“Is that so? I thought that it’d be too dangerous for a little girl to make her way back to the village on her own, so I doubled back. Okay, sure, maybe it’s just coincidence that we happened to meet in the same place where a bunch of Orcs were just killed. But why are you and that village girl so familiar with each other? It’s as if you knew each other.”
Crap, he was watching us. Depending on how much he heard, I’m going to need to change my answer.
“I-I do not know Dust-san at all! We just met and haven’t even exchanged a single word yet!”
“You idiot! Are you an airhead?”
She committed a fatal mistake in her panic.
“Oh, even though the two of you were chatting so animatedly with each other? And if you haven’t exchanged a single word with him, how do you know his name?”
Don’t plead for help with those teary eyes of yours! You break way too easily under pressure!
What should I do to get out of this? This isn’t the first time I’ve fallen into a bad situation. Come on, there has to be a way!
“Huh, what have I been doing… Wh-Where is this place? You are that Succubus! I-I remember now! I’ve been mesmerized by this devil! She’s the mastermind behind everything!”
I offered a scapegoat to Mitsurugi.
“Wait, what? What are you saying, Dust-san? You were the one who planned all this!”
I tried to push Loli succubus away as she tearfully clung to my chest.
Damn, she’s surprisingly strong. I can’t get her away at all!
“I have no idea what you are talking about. Hey, Mitsurugi, don’t be fooled by her honeyed words. She’s a devil. Devils are the natural enemies of gods. That means she’s the natural enemy of that Priestess you know!”
“You are the worst! You devil! Scum! Trash!”
“Tsk, say whatever you want. I’m just looking out for myself! If you’re a succubus, try charming me with that pitiful body of yours! See, look at this, she has a devil’s tail on her butt!”
As I thrust my hand into her skirt to pull out her tail, Mitsurugi averted his eyes.
Loli succubus responded by repeatedly screaming ‘pervert’ as she slapped at me. Even though she reveals much more skin on a daily basis.
I really don’t get where her line is.
“Well, it does indeed seem that she is a devil.”
“Right? Then you know that I’m innocent, right?”
Yeah, seems like everything’s heading my way. Mitsurugi seems like a soft person. Even knowing she’s a devil, he probably won’t be able to raise a hand towards someone who looks that much like a little girl.
This way, everyone will be able to make it out fine.
“Don’t fall for his words! This man bought your valued sword for a pittance and sold it back to you with an outrageous markup in order to fleece money off you!”
“Y-You little- Where did you learn that from?”
“You proudly boasted about that when you came into our shop all drunk the other day!”
A-ah, right, I feel like I’ve said something like that…
–The sound of a sword being drawn from a sheath reached my ears.
“Wait! Can’t you put your sword back into its sheath and civilly talk this out? Talking things through is something that only humans are capable of.”
“Dwarves, Elves, us devils, and even some monsters are capable of talking too, you know?”
Shut up, Loli succubus! I’m desperately trying to calm him down! Can’t you read the mood!?
Mitsurugi raised his sword, glaring coldly at us with a pitiless expression. Ah, that’s the expression of a guy who won’t listen to any excuses.
I quickly turned Loli succubus around and lifted up her skirt!
“Kyaaa! What are you doing!?”
“Wha-What are you-?”
Are you two teenage girls? The moment Mitsurugi awkwardly averted his gaze, I grabbed Loli succubus under my arm and ran with all of my might.
“St-Stop right there!”
“As if there’s an idiot who would stop when they are told to! Did drawing your other magic sword make it hard for you to run? Don’t force it now!”
I didn’t forget to leave a parting line before I leaving the scene.
It’s a pity that I couldn’t turn back to look at his expression, but I managed to make a clean escape.
“Say, are you really not a devil?”
“Stop asking me that! I’m obviously not!”
Stop looking at me with such a doubtful gaze. I’m a morally upright adventurer.
“Damnit, I really went through a lot of shit after that. First it turns out that all the young women happened to be out in the city when I visited that village. What was that about a village full of pretty girls? They were all just dried grapes. Then when I tried to report the quest the next day, it turns out Mitsurugi has already beaten me to it, so I didn’t see a lick of gold from that Orc subjugation quest. To make it worse, Lynn found out everything I did, so I ended up getting hateful looks and lectures about paying back my debts. It’s just bad things happening one after another.”
“I know. I was there.”
Loli succubus calmly responded to my grumbling as she busied herself with cleaning up the store.
Because it isn’t business hours yet, Loli succubus and I were the only ones in the store.
“Will you please go home? You’re in the way.”
“That’s not how you speak to a customer, you know?”
“You don’t have money, do you?”
If only it weren’t for Mitsurugi, I’d have a fat purse by now. I’d be laughing and having a mug of beer if he didn’t go back and do something unnecessary.
“It’s all Mitsurugi’s fault that I don’t have any money.”
“Dust-san, do you know the saying ‘you reap what you sow’?”
“I’ve long since erased that phrase from my dictionary!”
“You really are a scumbag through and through. Even most devils don’t have your kind of talent.”
I can’t tell if she’s exasperated or impressed. The loli succubus let out a complicated expression as she continued sweeping the floor.
This loli succubus. She may be talking to me with a cordial tone, but it seems like her opinion of me has dropped by a whole lot since the first time we met. Well, I don’t really have any interest in chopping boards, so I don’t really mind…
But rather than growing distant from me, it feels more like she’s looking down on me…
Is she still holding a grudge over how I tried to sell her out the other day? What a petty person.
“Well, forget it. Anyway, getting looked down on is really damaging to an adventurer, so I would like to request your help in some matter.”
She refused without even listening to what it is. Seems like she’s wary of me.
“Now now, at least hear me out.”
“If I hear you out, you intend to drag me down to my doom, don’t you?”
“Just what do you think I am?”
“A piece of trash that only comes about once in several generations?”
“Hey, don’t think I’ll go easy on you just because you’re a girl. Sit right there, I’ll show you what a piece of trash really looks like. I’ll make it such that you’ll never talk back against me again.”
I cracked my knuckles and moved towards Loli succubus, and she tightly grabbed her broom and raised it before me.
“If you do that, I’ll make sure you’ll never be able to make use of this store again!”
“Tsk, don’t think such threats will work on me! Don’t look down on me. You’ve been busy for a while, so let me help you out.”
I have no choice but to relent in the face of that. Not being able to use this store is a fate worse than death.
To convince her to go along without using threats… yeah, there’s still that method.
“Sorry, I just thought that you’d be able to overcome any problem with that amazing acting ability that you demonstrated the other day … I got too excited.”
Acting like I’m genuinely regretful, I lowered my head.
Now then, how would you react after seeing this?
“G-Geez, I can’t get angry at you after saying that, can I?”
She blushed and averted her gaze… Girls who aren’t used to being complimented sure are easy. Now then, let’s continue along this line.
“Your acting was like that of a star actress. The dreams you craft must be a sight to see. Ahh, if only I wasn’t broke. I’ll definitely request for you when I earn some money.”
“Come on, I’m not that great. You’re exaggerating. Hehe.”
Perhaps to hide the fact that her face has blushed bright red, she hastened her speed in sweeping the floors. She’s so easy to trick that even I’m worried for her. Though it’s really convenient for me in this case.
“Sorry. I thought that you’d be able to pull it off with your skills, but I should’ve considered your opinion and not tried to force it upon you. I’ll go ask one of the other succubi. Sigh.”
I let out a huge sigh. Then, when I peeked at Loli succubus’s face from the corner of my eye, she was looking at me with with a smiling face that has ‘Where would you be without me?’ written all over it.
“Okay, fine. Just this once, okay? I’ll help you just this once.”
Is it really okay for a succubus to be this easily tricked? Are you sure you’re a proper devil? Something’s really wrong when a devil has humans worrying about her.
Wait, what am I thinking about? Let me change gears.
“Oh, really? Thanks. Right, here’s what I have in mind…”
I whispered to her. At first she was nodding along happily, but when it came to the last bit she suddenly balked and turned to look at me with a cold, scornful gaze.
“I’m fine with letting Mitsurugi-san see a dream, but… Isn’t that dream too horrible?”
“What are you saying? You are a devil. I’m just asking you to show him a dream where he gets into an erotic situation with that priestess he likes so much, and just before he gets into bed… she turns into a female Orc and attacks him.”
“This dream will definitely give him some kind of trauma. Though, will it really be alright to sneak into his room to give him a dream? Wouldn’t he detect my presence? He seems really strong…”
“You don’t have to worry about that. Seems like the women who are with him are always making a din in the next room over at the inn he’s staying, so a little bit of noise wouldn’t wake him up.”
I heard this from a very reliable source. Well, I overheard it from those two when they were talking in the guild.
“Plus, I’ll prepare a retreat route in advance in case things go bad. I’ll keep a lookout for you.”
“If that’s the case… I’ll run away the moment I sense any kind of threat, okay?”
“Oh, sure. Now all the preparations for my revenge is complete. I’ll take my revenge for both the money and the women tonight. Mwahahaha!”
“You really are a devil.”
I decided to ignore Loli succubus’ little joke.
Almost as if it was to outrun the dawn, Loli succubus and I frantically ran through the back alleys.
“I knew it, it was impossible!”
“Oh, shut up! Just focus on running!”
Dammit, why did things turn out like this? It was all going well when we snuck in.
Who could’ve expected that the two women would’ve barged into the room just as Loli succubus moved next to Mitsurugi and was preparing to give him a dream?
“You bastards! How could a woman raid a man’s room at night?”
“I wouldn’t have been able to give him a dream anyway! He was dead drunk!”
That’s the worst! I don’t know who exactly it was that had him drink so much, but at the very least we managed to escape from those two women who barged in at the absolute worst time.
“Stop right there, you slut! I’ll remember your face!”
“You better not have touched Kyouya!”
Those two sure are persistent.
Loli succubus snuck in wearing her succubus outfit, but I gave her a coat in order to avoid revealing her identity as a succubus.
Thankfully, they didn’t notice her wings or her tail in that dark room.
“I want to fly away, but I can’t fly like this!”
“If we become criminals, we are doing it together.”
“No! If they catch me, I’ll be purified! You can go turn yourself in on your own!”
“I refuse! I don’t mind getting caught by the police, but I definitely am not getting caught because I tried to sneak into a guy’s room! I absolutely refuse!”
If something like this were to be made known, my life as an adventurer, and as a man, would be over. I’ll be abandoned by my companions. I’ll definitely escape!
“Ah, that was the worst! We managed to shake them off somehow. It would’ve been really bad if we were caught. I kind of feel sorry for Mitsurugi for having to deal with such women every day.”
“Damnit! This is all Dust-san’s fault! That was really close!”
In the end, we continued running until dawn, and somehow managed to get away with our lives. Socially or otherwise.
It’s gotten quite bright outside when we walked out to the main street. I guess it’s about time for the shops to start opening up.
“Sigh, I’m tired. I’m going back to sleep… Dust-san, did you end up becoming a kidnapper during your escape? Dragging around such a cute girl…”
What are you saying, Loli succubus, staring at me like that… No, she’s staring just slightly to the side of me. Following her gaze, I noticed a brat standing there.
It’s that village girl who was pestering me back in the guild when I was discussing the details of the Orc subjugation quest. Where did she come from?
“Uncle, are you done with your work?”
“You sure are up early, little brat. Didn’t I tell you not to call me uncle?”
“I’m not a brat, I’m a young lady. Uncle, uncle, what about the Orcs? Our promise? The present?”
I don’t remember making any promises with this little brat, but that conversation seemed to count as a promise in her mind.
“Ah, you sure are noisy. This will do, right?”
I tossed a beautifully wrapped box to the brat. After catching it, the brat’s face broke into a brilliant smile.
“You found it for me! Thank you, handsome onii-chan!”
I made shooing motions to the little girl, who kept waving at me no matter how many times I looked back.
My eyes met with loli succubus, who was silently observing my conversation with the girl. Standing next to me, she let out a mysterious grin.
“So that’s the real reason you were carefully searching the Orcs back then.”
“That’s not it at all. I just happened to pick it up while searching for any valuables.”
“Oh, is that so?”
Don’t grin at me like that.