A Trade with that Tranquility Girl!
Editing: Ulti, Xenthur
I was free and didn’t have any money, so I went to Sir Vanir’s shop to play. However, the only thing that awaited me on my arrival was a silent glare.
Of course, I’m not the type of person who’d be scared away so easily, so I took a seat by the window.
Shortly thereafter, the beautiful shopkeeper came by with some tea and snacks.
It might be surprising to hear this, but Sir Vanir merely works part time at this store. Wiz is the one who actually owns it.
She’s a beautiful, kind hearted and courteous former adventurer. A proper spellcaster who doesn’t fire off Explosions around town.
“Oh, pardon the intrusion.”
“If you’re going to intrude, then go home, man who’s drowning in debts! Moi is desperately coming up with a way to pay off the landlord at the end of this month. Storekeeper who’s a genius at wasting money, there’s no need to give tea and snacks to someone who isn’t a customer.”
It seems like he’s in a bad mood today.
I can sense Sir Vanir staring at me out of the corner of my eye, though I can’t quite see his expression from behind his mask.
“How rude, Sir. I’m still a customer. I’ve plans to buy an item or two when I strike it big, so look forward to it. It’s really a pity that my wallet is empty right now. I love gold, but gold really hates me for some reason.”
“Moi is sure everything about you is disagreeable to gold.”
“You can’t say that to a customer, Vanir-san. Take your time.”
Wiz, who was surprisingly normal by the standards of this town, cheerfully smiled.
She really is a beauty. I always thought it was weird how she’s still single despite having both good looks and a decent personality.
There are even quite a few fans of her amongst the adventurers.
A few of them have been suspicious of her relationship with Sir Vanir ever since he started working here, but judging from how they interact from a day to day basis… That doesn’t seem very likely.
“Sir, do you know of some easy and relaxing way to earn money?”
“Moi dissolved into sand when Moi tried to break into the bank. It’s an easy way to make a lot of money, so why don’t you give it a shot?”
“It won’t be a joke if I get caught for that! I’ll be tossed into jail for life… Though, hold on. I’ll get a place to sleep and three meals a day, so it’s not entirely without merit…”
Jail is like my hotel room whenever I don’t have money.
I’m guaranteed a place to sleep and three meals, so it’s certainly an option. However, I won’t be able to make use of the succubus service while I’m in there.
“Unfortunately, I’ll have to reject that plan.”
“You shouldn’t be giving it serious thought in the first place. Isn’t accepting requests at the guild and properly working to complete them not what an adventurer ought to do?”
“Sigh, you don’t get it, Sir. Any idiot can work hard and earn money. I’m racking my brains to think of an easier way to make money. Isn’t it best to have money pile up even while you’re sleeping?”
A lifestyle where I’m surrounded by women, drink, and sleep is the best.
In order to realize that, I require money. But working hard for money doesn’t particularly appeal to me.
“If such a method exists, Moi would’ve already been making use of it. This left on the shelf shopkeeper once again brought in a bunch of useless goods the other day. My head hurts just thinking about how to pay for it…”
“T-Those items will definitely increase in value! The merchant even said the price will go up by a hundred times in a century!”
She’s trying to justify herself with tears in her eyes, but there’s no way that’ll work. Sir looks like he’s fed up with it too.
“Wait a hundred years for a hundredfold increase… Well, that’s fine.”
Sir put his hands on his forehead and sighed.
That’s surprising. I thought he’d be angry at that.
Then again, I suppose a hundred years isn’t that big of a deal to a greater devil like him.
“However, how long does the warranty on that magic item last for?”
Wiz withered in front of Sir’s gaze.
“Have you forgotten a similar case that happened in the past? Just what exactly is stuffed into that skull of yours? Should I scoop it out and give it a good scrubbing!? I’m sure it’s empty anyways!!”
“There’s no way that can be true! Wait, did you just call me left on the shelf earlier?”
“Is that delayed reaction a sign of you going senile? Moi has heard that romance keeps human brains active, but that level of deterioration…”
“Even if it’s Vanir-san, I won’t forgive you if you continue!”
Wiz actually got angry for once, and Sir doesn’t look like he has any intention of backing down either.
A fight between a greater devil and a mage who was a famous former adventurer, huh? It won’t be a joke if I get dragged into it.
Seeing the writing on the wall, I started sneaking away to the entrance of the store.
“Hold on a moment. Your talk of money reminded me, but Moi has heard of a good get rich quick scheme.”
Sir ignored the still angry Wiz and stopped me.
Unlike the storekeeper, Sir does have a talent for making money, so he’s at least worth hearing out.
“Oh, seriously? Let me hear it. We can hash things out after you tell me how serious a crime I would be committing. I’ll have to get my money’s worth if I have to spend more than a week in jail.”
“Moi knew you’d be interested. Don’t worry, it’s nothing illegal. A good idea came to me while Moi was telling that guardian of problem children about the new goods.”
He’s referring to Kazuma, right?
I’ve recently heard some rumours that you can make a killing by working with Vanir on his money making schemes, so this should be good.
“Moi has no personal experience with this, but human girls are often worried about getting fat and frequently go on diets. Is that not right?”
“Yes, that’s true. Everyone cares about their figure, after all. For women, beauty and health are always on their mind.”
Wiz nodded after Vanir suddenly directed a question at her.
Come to think of it, Lynn often exercise restraint the day after we have a feast, doesn’t she?
“In that case, what would you do if there is a type of food that would not make you gain weight no matter how much of it you consume?”
“I would love to get my hands on it! But there’s no way such a convenient item can exist.”
“Fuhahaha! And what if it does exist?”
“Eh? If that’s really possible, it’ll definitely sell!”
Wiz confidently declared.
Judging from how enthusiastic she is, if such a thing really exists, women will definitely be all over it.
“But, I’m not doubting you, Sir, but does something that sounds so good really exists? You’ll definitely get fat if you eat that much, just like that Alderp’s belly.”
The image of the former lord of the town, Alderp, flashed through my mind.
He never was a particularly likable guy in the first place, but as it turns out, he truly was a piece of trash that came up with various schemes in order to force Darkness to marry him.
He went missing after his schemes were revealed and his entire fortune was seized. I wonder what he’s doing now.
“But it does exist. Food that will not make you fat no matter how much of it you consume. That’d be the tranquility girls.”
“Tranquility girls are those monsters, right? Sir, isn’t that a little cruel…”
“Vanir-san, that’s, err…”
Wiz and I responded at the same time.
Tranquility girls are plant type monsters that have an appearance resembling that of a young gir.
They are truly abhorrent monsters that attempt to elicit sympathy from travellers and adventurers with their fragile looking forms. Once enthralled, you’d be held captive while you slowly weaken and die. Those who die end up becoming nutrients for the tranquility girl.
It does sound horrible, but since they kill without pain, there are quite a few people who willingly seek them out when they wish to move on.
The guild’s official stance is that they are horrible monsters and recommends their immediate extermination.
“Moi thinks you two have some kind of misunderstanding. Moi is not saying to butcher tranquility girls and consume them. What Moi is after is the fruit that they create.”
“Fruit? … Are you talking about the fruit that is said to instantly get you hooked from the moment you take a bite?”
“Indeed. Those fruits are delicious and filling, but has almost no nutritional value. Thus, no matter how much you eat, you’ll never get fat. If we make some food with that as an ingredient, it is certain to be a great hit.”
Huh, so tranquility girls produce those kind of fruits. I didn’t know that.
… I see. Good thinking, Sir. True, if we use that, the creation of a dish that will not make you fat is possible.
“I have heard that they produce addictive fruits to weaken their prey and prevent them from escaping, but…”
“Way to go, Sir. That’d be the perfect ingredient. We’ll definitely be rich.”
“W-Wait, I’ve also heard that those fruits adversely affect the central nervous system. From what I can recall, they were called tranquility girls because they can shut off the sensations of pain, fatigue, and hunger and put their victims into a dreamlike state before their deaths.”
Wiz, who was totally on board with us, suddenly raised an objection.
Is it really that dangerous of an item? That changes things. If we start selling that, the police definitely won’t let it slide. It’d be a pretty major crime, in fact.
“Isn’t that really bad? If we get caught, we might end up in jail for life…”
“Selling something that dangerous really brings your humanity into question, Vanir-san!”
Wiz grabbed onto Sir and violently shook his body.
Vanir pried Wiz off him with an irritated expression and took a deep breath.
“In the first place, Moi is not human. Secondly, unlike you two, Moi is not a fool. Moi will not sell the fruit as it is. It is not my intention to cause the death of humans. The plan is to process it to remove the harmful components before selling it. For that reason, it is necessary to acquire a large amount of tranquility girl fruits.”
“So that’s my part in this.”
“It’s good that you’re quick to catch on. Don’t worry, Moi will give you the standard fee for taking on this request, including half in advance. How about it?”
It doesn’t seem like a bad deal. Even if he fails to find a way to remove the harmful components from the fruit, I would’ve already been paid, so that wouldn’t affect me.
If things go well, I might be able to help with the selling and earn even more money that way.
This request isn’t bad at all. In fact, it’s a very appealing, very profitable proposition.
“Delinquent who’s best suited for evil schemes, let me hear your answer!”
“There’s no need to even ask! Aren’t we close friends!? Heh, I shall gladly accept!”
Sir gave a satisfied laugh as I answered while rubbing my palms.
Though, the storekeeper still seemed to be on the fence about this idea as she restlessly paced about the store.
When I returned to the guild with a heavy heart due to the looming deadline of my debts, coincidentally, my party members were all present, so I was able to tell them the details of the request on the spot.
I’ll just leave out what Sir wants to do with them.
“So that’s the story. He’s offering to pay quite a bit for it, so you guys don’t have a problem with it, right?”
“Aren’t you the least bit afraid to accept a request from Vanir-san? Have you already forgotten what happened in Alcanretia?”
Lynn, who doesn’t quite seem on board with the idea, stopped eating and twirled her knife around.
She’s eating a salad again.
“Of course not. That only happened because Sir had a grudge against the Axis Cult. He often works with Kazuma to run a proper business.”
“I’ve heard Kazuma made a lot of money thanks to that partnership.”
“He probably bought the mansion he currently lives in with that money. Man, I’m so jealous.”
Keith and Taylor seem to be a little more agreeable to this proposal.
Yeah, it ain’t good to be so quick to doubt everything you come across like Lynn.
“Plus the request is simply to gather the fruits of a tranquility girl. We could take care of it at the same time and get the extermination bounty from the guild.”
There aren’t any requests to exterminate tranquility girls up at the moment, but we can still get paid as long as we bring back proof of the extermination.
“You’re talking about those tranquility girls, right? I’m fine with accepting the request, but I’m not really looking forward to killing one, so let’s just go for the fruits.”
“I’ll pass on the extermination too.”
“Monster or no, I’m not stabbing a young girl.”
It doesn’t seem like my companions are too keen on killing one.
They might be monsters, but they do have the appearance of a young girl, so yeah, I understand why they’d hesitant.
“It’s a bit of a waste, but oh well. We’ll just negotiate with them for their fruits today. Don’t worry, apparently they can understand human words.”
It’s a pity to give up on the guild’s rewards, but the money offered by Vanir is more than enough. There’s no need to risk the ire of my companions.
“Still, where would we find a tranquility girl? I’ve heard rumours that there was one on the road between the Crimson Demon Village and Alcanretia, but apparently someone took care of it a while back.”
“Keith, is that true? A tranquility girl looks like a girl cute enough to trigger the protective instincts in anyone, right? Can someone really bring themselves to kill…”
Lynn frowned just imagining it.
An adventurer who can attack and slay a young girl… yeah, the only image that comes to mind is that of a hardened criminal.
“Yeah, I think I’ll pass on that too. I just can’t lay a hand on a kid. It’s impossible for a kind gentleman like me.”
“You mean a brute who’d hit on any woman you see, right!? The guy who did it must have been someone who has been constantly rejected by women and picked her to vent his frustrations on. Even I wouldn’t be able to stoop that low!”
As Keith drunkenly cursed the imagined assailant, I heard a loud clatter behind me.
Turning back, I saw a trembling Kazuma with an upturned tankard spilling its contents onto his table.
So Kazuma and co. were here too, huh.
“You know, you shouldn’t criticize him too much. It might look like a young girl, but it’s still a monster. Even if some people willingly seek them out wishing for a peaceful death, it’s still undeniable that it has killed a lot of people. You should be grateful to someone who does these necessary tasks that no one else is willing to do.”
As Taylor said soberly, Kazuma, who was quite a few tables over, got to his feet and made his way over to us.
“This is my treat, Taylor! Go ahead and drink to your heart’s content! You can order a few more snacks if you want!”
“Oh, I don’t really get it, but thanks. Don’t mind if I do.”
Kazuma left a tankard filled to the brim on the table before leaving.
“Hey, why only Taylor? Give your good friend some alcohol and snacks too!”
“No fair! Me too! Me too!”
“Yeah! You can treat an outsider, but you can’t treat your own companion? Where did your humanity go? Buy me the most expensive wine in this store!”
Keith and I started making a fuss, and the party priest seated at the other table joined in as well.
Kazuma looked at us and took a deep breath.
Dammit, it’s it because I went wild these past few nights?
Come to think of it, Taylor and Kazuma are pretty close, aren’t they? Every so often, I would catch them having a drink together.
Apparently, they have quite a bit in common from being the leaders of their respective teams. It seems like they often grumble about their companions over a few tankards of beer.
“Anyway, going back to the original topic, do you have any idea where we can find a tranquility girl?”
“We’ll have to ask Luna for that.”
I walked over to the bored looking Luna behind the counter, but I had to look down for a moment before calling to her.
Her assets are amazing as usual. When it comes to the size of her chest, she might be the number one in the guild, even taking all the adventurers into account.
Before I could properly appreciate her twin peaks, they were quickly hidden from view.
What’s the big deal? It’s not like they’d shrink or anything.
“Do you need something, Dust-san?”
“Those things really are an amazing treat for the eyes. I really wish Lynn could take after you.”
“If you’re just here for sexual harassment, then please leave before I call the cops.”
Even though I praised her, Luna covered her chest, completely hiding them from my sight.
You could just wear looser clothing around the chest if you really wanted to hide them.
“Come on, the police won’t come for something this minor. I know from experience. Anyway, do you have any information on tranquility girl sightings?”
“Could you be going out to exterminate them? Thank you very much!”
Luna bowed to me, causing her chest to jiggle.
Most of the adventurers who come to see Luna are men, and this sight is exactly why most of them choose to line up at her counter instead of someone else’s.
I didn’t have any intention of killing them, but I should just play along for now.
“Yeah, so I’d like like to know where they are. I’ve heard that there was one close to Alcanretia.”
“That one has already been exterminated, but there’s been eyewitness reports of other tranquility girls around here…”
Saying that, she brought out a piece of paper from behind her counter.
On it is a map of their territory and breeding grounds. Cross marks probably represents those that have been eliminated.
“As mentioned earlier, the tranquility girl on this road was taken out by a certain adventurer some time ago.”
“Tranquility girls look almost exactly like a young human girl, right? Do you know what kind of person took it out?”
“We have been in contact. He’s registered under the Axel Branch of the Adventurer’s Guild, and is a very reliable adventurer who took the initiative to do jobs that others refuse to do. According to them, taking out a tranquility girl is surprisingly easy, so there’s no need to worry, Dust-san.”
I heard the clattering of chairs behind me. Turning around, I came across an angry seeming Kazuma trying to make his way to the counter, only to be restrained by Megumin and Darkness.
“Don’t joke with me! Do you know how tough it was!?”
His face is bright red… Did he have a few too many drinks?
Luna has a wide smile on her face. A lot of newbie adventurers get taken in by that smile of hers, but I know from experience that she is quite a schemer.
“Are you plotting something?”
“Not at all. Now, then, back to original topic, there’s been a tranquility girl spotted around this lake. It’s one of the water sources of this town, and it used to have problems with declining water quality, but ever since it was purified, it has turned into a beautiful place.”
Another clattering of chairs came from behind.
This time, it’s the blue-haired party priest, Aqua, squatting down with her hands on her head.
“Inside the cage is best. Outside is scary… Outside is scary…”
“Ah, that trauma from back then resurfaced! Kazuma, do something!”
“I don’t wanna. It’s a pain. Just give her some beer and she’d be back to normal eventually.”
The Explosion Girl was panicking in front of Aqua, who was muttering something to herself while staring off into the distance.
Her only good point was being cheerful, so to see her depressed like this… Well, I guess such things do happen from time to time.
“So I can run into one if I head to that lake, right? Great, thanks!”
“Please stay on your guard. Most of the people who left to exterminate them were taken in by their appearance and couldn’t follow through.”
My party didn’t have any intentions of taking them out, but the reward is surprisingly huge.
It’s certainly possible to kill it behind my party’s back and keep the prize money to myself. I’d be able to get paid twice. It’s certainly worth considering.
The destination was quite close to town, so it didn’t take much time for us to arrive.
The lake was far larger, and far more beautiful, than I expected. Apparently, the rivers from the nearby mountains all end up here, making it an ideal water source.
“Oh~. If only I wasn’t on a job. This place looks perfect for a picnic and an afternoon nap.”
“Yeah, there isn’t even a single trace of monsters around here. It’s the very picture of peace.”
“Would there even be a tranquility girl here? Let’s just wash up and go home.”
My companions are completely in a holiday mood.
Keith let out a large yawn and carried himself almost as if he was about to lay down on the grass for a nap.
It’s peaceful, and the weather is great, so it’s is indeed a great day to laze around. If it wasn’t a job from Sir, I would’ve laid down and taken a nap.
“Let’s get it over and done with. From what I’ve heard, it lives in the forests next to the lake.”
“Right, let’s hurry up and get a move on. We just need to convince it, right?”
As we made our way around the lake, we occasionally sighted a few other adventurers.
It’s not just one or two of them. There are over a dozen in total, and it seemed like they are coming to and from the forest.
“Is there a really profitable monster living around here? Or perhaps this is a good spot to peep on bathing girls?”
“There’s no way they’d be here for something that stupid. But you noticed it too, huh. There seem to be a surprising number of adventurers around here… Taylor, do you know something?”
Lynn directed the question at Taylor, who wordlessly shook his head.
“Maybe there are Onion Ducks living around here. They like clean water, right?”
Surprisingly, Keith’s idea might be the most likely of them all.
Onion Ducks are weak, but they give a lot of experience points. On top of that, both their onions and their flesh taste delicious. They are a very worthwhile monster to hunt.
The adventurers who are glancing over to us are probably on the lookout to prevent any Onion Ducks from slipping by. In any case, there’s no need to keep watching them.
While ignoring the gazes of the other adventurers, we entered the forest.
We didn’t have to walk long before encountering a sparsely grown clearing.
Sitting amongst the grass was a slim, green-haired girl who was looking at us with teary seeming eyes.
Its appearance was cute enough to trigger the protective instincts even in someone like me.
“A single girl alone this deep in the forest… Could she be the tranquility girl?”
“She looks just like a regular human. Is there no chance that she’s just lost?”
“So this is the lure, huh? It’s pretty impressive. If I didn’t know better, I would’ve been completely fooled.”
It’s understandable for Lynn and the others to be hesitant.
It’s pretty obvious what it is out here in the forest, but if I were to run into it sitting around in town, there’d be no way I could tell that it’s a monster.
“Umm, you’re a tranquility girl, right?”
In response to my words, the tranquility girl shyly nodded.
Then, looking up at me with slightly tear-stained eyes, it said in a halting manner.
“Are you people… here to kill me?”
“No, that’s not why we are here…”
Having her look at me with such innocent eyes caused a certain part of my heart to throb.
Ugh, so there was still that part of my conscience left…
After hearing such words from a defenseless little girl, anyone would lose the will to kill her.
I originally planned to secretly take care of her and get the reward from the guild, but I think I’ll pass on that after all.
There won’t be a problem with leaving a single monster out here. It’s not like she’s really threatening anyone.
“There’s no need to be scared, we aren’t here to do anything violent. We just came here to talk.”
“Yeah, yeah, we aren’t going to do anything, so don’t be afraid. We won’t let this barbarian do anything to you.”
Huh, Lynn’s actually using the voice she uses when she plays with the stray cats in town.
She placed a finger to her cheek.
Lynn gave her a kind smile in response. It seems like she has completely fallen for it.
Keith and Taylor hastily hid their weapons behind their backs to avoid scaring her. They are kind at heart, so it isn’t surprising for them to react this way.
“We want the fruits you produce. Could you give us a few of them?”
“Ah, you’re hungry. Give me a moment.”
Saying that with a smile, she plucked a few fruits from under her dress and handed one to each of us.
At the same time, an expression of pain appeared across her features for a brief moment.
“Ah, you don’t need to push yourself.”
“Yeah, we won’t demand the impossible. Your health comes first.”
Lynn and Taylor hastily moved to stop her, but the tranquility girl simply smiled.
“No, thank you, kind onii-chan, onee-chan. Please help yourself if you are hungry.”
Staring at the fruit in his hand, Keith wrapped an arm around me and whispered into my ear.
“Say, doesn’t her way of speaking sound suspicious to you? She sounds just like someone who acts all innocent and tells her customers whatever they want to hear in order to get every last coin from their pockets”
“You caught onto that too, huh? It works on them because those two are simple, but it just reeks of an act to me. That gave is, how do I put it…”
Keith and I are of the same mind.
It sounds just like the ladies at the bar when they are trying to sell some expensive alcohol.
It might work when we’re drunk and having a good time, but we’re stone cold sober right now, so we can’t help but catch onto the act.
I kind of understand why the guild regards them as dangerous monsters and recommends their extermination.
I decided to spare it, but it might actually be best to kill it right now.
Still, it didn’t take long to get our hands on them. The fruit smelt really sweet when I took a sniff.
I haven’t eaten anything decent recently, so it looks especially appealing, but… I just need to bear with it until I get the money from Sir.
We were able to successfully communicate with it, and it doesn’t seem like it’s about to attack us… Though it is trying really hard to get us to eat the fruit.
I expected it to be harder to complete, but it ended up being a snap.
“Well, thanks. Seeya.”
That tone was completely different from the one it used earlier.
It seemed like it was too surprised to maintain its facade of a dainty girl.
“What, is it bad if we bring them back with us?”
“Umm, that fruit doesn’t keep for long, so it won’t be delicious if you leave it out. I’ve heard that it’s delicious enough to make your cheeks melt when it’s fresh, so I really recommend eating it now.”
The tranquility girl seemed quite flustered as it tried to convince us to stay.
It’s probably because it won’t be able to turn us into nutrients if we don’t eat them here. It might look like a girl, but it’s still a monster.
“Nah. If we eat this, we would become addicted to it and won’t be able to leave, no?”
“Not at all. It’d just be really delicious.”
“Then it’s fine if we bring them back, right?”
The tranquility girl crossed its arms and made a soft, uh-nuh noise.
“Then, why don’t you take a bite?”
“Eh? Eating my own fruits is a little…”
It grimaced as I shoved the fruit towards it.
Well, I suppose it’d be like eating a portion of your own flesh.
As the tranquility girl made a scared expression, Lynn and Taylor pulled on the hem of my clothes.
“Don’t scare her. I’ll burn this idiot up with magic later, so don’t be afraid.”
“You shouldn’t treat a defenseless person so roughly. Don’t worry, as a Crusader, I’ll definitely protect you.”
The two of them stood in front of me as if to protect the tranquility girl.
Don’t be so easily fooled.
“Then let Keith take a bite.”
“Why me!? You eat it! You’ll eat leftover fish when you’re broke, so you’ll be fine no matter what you put in your stomach!”
“Don’t speak that badly of people! I’ve only ever eaten leftovers at the worst of times! Like, thrice at most!”
The moment I said that, my companions started inching away from me.
Not only that, but the tranquility girl too looked at me with pity in its eyes.
“H-Hey, you don’t need to be that surprised! If you smell something good coming from a trash bin when you’re broke, you’d succumb to temptation, right?”
“No I won’t.”
“I’ll at least buy some bread for you if you’re really starving, so don’t do that anymore…”
“I’ll give you another two of my fruits.”
Dammit, having these guys offer me such kindness just makes me even more angry!
Ignoring the tranquility girl who offered me another pair of fruits, we finally left the area.
It might be better to take care of it now to prevent future adventurers from getting tricked, but right now, Sir’s request takes top priority.
After returning to Axel, I headed off alone to report to Sir Vanir.
My companions seem to be a little wary of Sir, so I had them wait in the guild.
When I confidently opened the door, I came across the beautiful shopkeeper charred and twitching in the corner. Well, it’s a regular sight by this point, so I paid it no special heed.
Alongside her was Sir standing there with his arms crossed, and Loli Succubus dressed in her villager’s outfit.
“I’m back, Sir. And what are you doing here?”
“I had something to discuss with Vanir-sama. I just arrived a short while before you.”
She said in a sweet sounding falsetto. I’ve never heard her speak this way before.
… I think I’ve heard somewhere that Loli Succubus was a fan of Sir.
“Let’s start with the results of my request. You do not object, yes?”
“Of course, I can go second. I’m a reserved girl after all.”
It seems like Loli Succubus acts as meek as a lamb in the presence of Sir. She’s normally far more headstrong.
She’s looking at Sir Vanir with starstruck eyes, but Sir himself barely even acknowledged her presence… My condolences.
“Ah, well, I managed to get four of them, but that’s enough to fulfill the request, right?”
I placed the bag containing the fruits on the counter.
“Moi has indeed received them. Very well, the remaining sum… What’s the meaning of this?”
Sir cocked his head upon checking the insides of the bag.
Turning the bag inside out, Sir dumped a set of wrinkly-skinned fruits onto the counter. They were less than half the size they were when I first received them.
“Are these dried fruits?”
“Where they originally like this when you received them?”
“No, they were far more juicy looking. It’s really odd for them to dry up this much in less than half a day.”
Black patches have even started appearing on the skin. It doesn’t look the slightest bit delicious at all.
“Gurk! It stinks! It smells just like socks that haven’t been washed for three days!”
“Eeh? If Dust-san knows what that smells like… do you not wash your socks?”
Don’t pinch your nose and look at me like I stink, Loli Succubus! You’ll wear the same clothes for a few days when you go out on an adventure!
“Hmm, it seems like these fruits degrade extremely quickly. Was this to make it harder for others to notice anything odd about these fruits? If that’s the case, it’s highly likely that the relevant components would’ve have degraded in the meantime.”
“Seriously? Then didn’t we just waste our time… Say, Sir, you’re not going to ask me to return the money you gave me in advance, are you? I don’t have a single eris left from that…”
I already brought the fruits, so I’d really like to just get the money and leave.
“Moi is not so petty of a person, but this is useless for my purpose. It seems like there might be no choice but to bring the tranquility girl itself to us.”
“Pardon me for interrupting, but is that the fruit of a tranquility girl?”
“Yeah, I got some on Sir’s request.”
Loli Succubus grimaced as she stared at the fruit.
Why did this girl’s mood turn sour so suddenly?
“What’s the matter? Constipation?”
“What could possibly give you that idea? No, it’s just, I came here to consult with Vanir-sama on something related to tranquility girls, so this was a strange coincidence.”
“Oh? Now you’ve sparked my interest. Do continue.”
Sir returned the fruits to the bag as he said that. The entire store will be filled with the stench of rotting fruits if he were to leave it in the open.
Though, it doesn’t seem the bag is thick enough to prevent the stench from spreading.
After thinking it through for a brief moment, Vanir tied up the bag and threw it next to Wiz who was still curled up on the floor.
Wiz jumped up slightly upon taking a whiff of the bag, but otherwise had no further reaction.
… I’m a little curious as to what he’s up to this time, but I guess I should listen to Loli Succubus first.
“The truth is, quite a few of our long time customers stopped showing up recently. We looked into it, and apparently, they’ve stopped showing up at the adventurer’s guild entirely. The other adventurers said that it isn’t that surprising for a few adventurers to slack off after the recent windfalls.”
Yeah, between the bounties from the Demon King’s General and the Hydra, an adventurer would be able to live leisurely even without working for quite some time.
In my case, I used up all the money fairly quickly, so I’m still as broke as ever.
Actually, now that she mentions it, there are a few faces that have completely disappeared from the guild.
“When we looked a little deeper into it, we discovered that all of the adventurers who stopped visiting us had something in common. All of them accepted a request to take out a tranquility girl!”
“But the tranquility girl is still there.”
“It would appear that all of them failed to carry through.”
Sure, taking down a tranquility girl requires more courage and ruthlessness than actual skill with arms, but if you send a dozen or so adventurers after one, you’d think that at least one of them would be willing to take the plunge.
If all of them really did disappear after heading out after the tranquillity girl, it would be quite the incident indeed. I should ask around at the guild. They might be offering some sort of bonus reward for resolving the problem.
“I’ll ask Luna for more details. I’m not done with this request yet.”
“You have an admirable attitude for once. Moi shall also think of a measure to get my hands on fresh fruits.”
“I’ll help Vanir-sama too! I’m a capable girl, after all.”
“In that case, would you mind throwing that large piece of garbage into the warehouse? It would get in the way of the customers.”
Loli Succubus started obediently dragging Wiz away to the back of the store at Sir Vanir’s command.
I do feel a little sorry for her, but considering how often she wastes Sir Vanir’s hard earn money, I suppose such treatment is only to be expected.
“Tsk, they didn’t wait for me. What a heartless bunch.”
My companions weren’t around by the time I returned to the guild. They either went back to their rooms or are out in town somewhere.
I felt stupid for seriously working while they were slacking off, so I moved to order a drink.
But then I remembered that I didn’t have any money.
The tavern is pretty sparse for once, so there’s no one I can sponge a drink off of.
“Give me a drink and put it on my tab.”
I said to one of the waitresses as she passed by, and she snorted in response.
“Huh? Save your jokes for when you’re drunk. You haven’t even paid up on last month’s tab. We’ve been discussing if it’s about time to bar you from the premises.”
“You’re joking… right? You’re just joking, right? If I can’t enter the guild, I won’t be able to take on any quests!”
“Who knows? Hey, don’t try and cop a feel! Just hurry up and clear your tab!”
As I clung onto the waitress’s waist, she smacked me on the head with the serving tray and left.
Dammit, I’m a customer, you know!? Don’t get ahead of yourself just because I can’t pay!
Though, yeah, that’s my fault.
Well, it wouldn’t do much good to just stand there, so I moved over to Luna who was busy cleaning the counter and struck up a conversation.
“Oh, you don’t look too bad with your ass sticking out like that either.”
“You know, I might seriously consider suing you.”
She immediately turned around and glared at me.
“Hey, come on, isn’t it pretty admirable that I didn’t lay a hand on you?”
“The mindset of a criminal is really scary indeed. Anyway, if you’re just here to get in the way, then please go elsewhere.”
Don’t make shooing motions at me.
I really would like to give her a piece of my mind, but it’d be difficult to continue working as an adventurer if I made an enemy out of her.
“Don’t be so cold-hearted. I’m here to get more details regarding the tranquility girl.”
“Ah, now that you mentioned it, how did the extermination go!?”
Oh, so that got her attention alright.
“Ah, about that, we did find one, but my companions didn’t want to go through with it, so I had to stay my hand.”
“So you couldn’t go through after all. Given its looks and way of speaking, it’s hard for anyone who’s kind at heart to take care of it. I had hoped that Dust-san would be capable of handling it…”
“Hey, what’s that’s supposed to mean?”
“It’s exactly as I’ve said.”
T-This girl actually said that with a smile.
One of these days, I’m going to make her tell me exactly what kind of person she thinks I am, but I have more important matters right now.
“Ah~, and here I was all hyping myself up to take out that tranquility girl, but nevermind. Sigh. I just can’t get the motivation to go through with this.”
“W-Wait a minute! I’ll apologize for my earlier statement, so can you please take care of it!? We are really in a bind here! On top of all the requests piling up because the adventurers have taken to slacking off, most of the adventurers who accept this task don’t return, so we are really in a bind!”
Luna clung onto me, allowing me to enjoy the sensation of her large breasts pressing against my body. It seems like she’s really at her wit’s end.
Oh, it might be nice to stay like this for a while.
“Are you really in that much of a bind?”
“Yes, we are! Including the people we sent to check up on those who went missing, the number of people who don’t come back just keeps going up… And the female adventurers wouldn’t take this task…”
So what Loli Succubus told me was true. Did the adventurers end up getting entrapped by the tranquility girl?
“Lynn was the same. It seems like women won’t be able to kill something like that.”
My companions too were taken in by its appearance and speech. The only people who can kill a tranquility girl would be someone who’s really strong at heart, or a truly horrible person.
“I appealed to the adventurer who took down a tranquility girl before, but he turned me down. He said that he doesn’t want to get involved with them again after psychological wounds he suffered the previous time…”
“Yeah, it’s pretty tough to kill something that looks that much like a human.”
She must be talking about the adventurer who killed the tranquility girl near Alcanretia.
I thought that he would have a heart of steel, but I suppose it’s still too much to ask him to do it again.
“The one found at the lake is particularly troublesome. I’ve heard that it’s really good at worming into your heart with words. Just what should I do…”
During her musings, Luna never took her upturned eyes off me.
Did she also push her body against mine on purpose?
Come now, I’m not going to fall for such an obvious seduction attempt.
“If you were to accept the request…”
She pushed her body even closer to me, to the point where my arm is almost entirely enveloped by the softness.
Gah, this is bad. No man can stand firm in the face of such softness. It feels like my sense of reason is floating away.
“If you accept…”
I gulped and waited nervously for her next word.
“I’ll tell the tavern to extend your tab for another month.”
“I’ll do it.”
I instantly accepted.
“Ah, dammit, what do I do about this?”
I still had the request from Sir to complete, so I thought we could kill two birds with one stone, but all my companions said no when I brought it up to them.
It seemed like they had enough after meeting with the tranquility girl once. They turned a deaf ear upon everything I said.
Afterwards, I tried broaching the topic to several of the adventurers I know, but not a single one of them hopped on board.
And the reasons are-
“Dust’s money making ideas aren’t reliable in the slightest.”
“She looks just like a girl, doesn’t she? No way.”
“Nevermind that, just pay me back already.”
And etc etc. Actually the last one turned from a discussion into a fistfight.
I wanted to get some beer to ease my mood, but I didn’t even have the money to do that. I tried searching for someone who would treat me, but Kazuma wasn’t around.
I can take out a tranquility girl by myself, no problem. The problem is travelling to where it is. Goblins and such can be easily taken care of, but it’d be really problematic if I ran into a Rookie Killer or the like along the way.
Well, just thinking about this isn’t bringing me anywhere, so I pulled up a chair and called for a waitress.
“Hey, can I make an order?”
“It’s fine as long as you pay up.”
“Tsk, fine, give me some water. That’s free, right?”
“Well, I suppose.”
“You can mix in some alcohol into as well!”
When I said that, she stuck her tongue out and walked away.
Well, there wasn’t much else for me to do, so I placed my feet on the table and stared at the ceiling.
“Is there anyone who would go on an adventure with me…”
As I mumbled, I noticed something moving at the corner of my vision.
The lonely Crimson Demon who pretty much held the window seat as her own personal territory stole several glances at me.
She wasn’t here when I was asking around for companions. She was probably getting into another argument with Kazuma’s Explosion Girl again.
… It seems I’ve secured a party member. As long as I keep the fact that we are going after a tranquility girl a secret, I’m sure she’ll be willing to tag along.
I’ll be able to ensure my safety with Yunyun around. Though, I suppose I should confirm it.
“I wonder if there’s a kind and strong and cool mage hanging around who rescues people in trouble~?”
I said that in a voice loud enough for her to hear, and Yunyun could barely contain her smile as she stood up.
She has taken the bait. It’s so easy that I might even start yawning.
The person in question seemed utterly ignorant of my intentions and boldly walked over to my table.
As I tried to keep my face as straight as possible to prevent her from noticing,
“Did you ask for me!?”
The Explosion Girl appeared at my table.
It seems like she entered the guild at the absolute worst possible time.
“I didn’t ask for you! Hey, Kazuma, she’s being a bother!”
“What’s with that treatment! As the foremost mage of the Crimson Demons-”
“Sorry. Hey, I told you not to cause trouble for others!”
Kazuma dragged the Explosion Girl away by her collar.
She waved her staff around and struggled against his grip, but then she suddenly quietened down.
“Using Drain Touch isn’t fair!”
“Shut up! Your level is so high that you won’t come along unless I do this! Hey, Darkness, stop giving me such envious looks!”
“If you want to vent your frustrations, you can use my body to its fullest. There’s no need to hold back. If you want, you can even use Bind to restrain me…”
“Hey, can I order the most expensive wine in this store? Hey. I said hey! Don’t ignore me!”
They were as lively as always.
The guild that was silent just a short while ago turned rowdy in an instant.
Kazuma sat down a few tables over with an exasperated expression on his face and ordered something. I’ll go sponge something off him later.
The thought crossed my mind to let Kazuma and co. help out, but… let’s not.
It’d be hard to kill it in a party with so many women. Plus, I get the feeling that something horrible will happen if I bring them along.
Turning my sights away from Kazuma, I noticed Yunyun who has been blankly standing there after she lost the chance to talk to me.
You know, she should really used to calling out to me already. There really is no need to be so guarded against me.
“What’s the matter, Yunyun? Do you need something?”
“Umm… Err… you were saying something about an adventure earlier…”
She trailed off, fidgeting all the while.
She really is a troublesome person to deal with.
“Sigh… If you have time, would you like to help me with a quest?”
“If you desperately need my help, I wouldn’t mind tagging along!”
Seeing her face brighten up like that made me want to tease her.
“Well, I’m not desperate or anything.”
“Eh? B-But, weren’t you troubled over not having enough people earlier?”
“It ain’t like this task is something I absolutely cannot do by myself.”
“I-I happen to be free, so I’ll help you out! There’s no need to stand on ceremony!”
If you’re that desperate, you should’ve just been honest from the start.
So this is why that Explosion Girl likes to mess with her.
“Well, if you are going to go that far, then sure. Now, let’s have a party to celebrate! It’ll be your treat!”
“No! If you don’t have money, then just drink some water!”
“Please just let me eat something with flavour already! Ice is chewy, but it won’t fill your belly!”
“I don’t know anything about that!”
“I do! Oh, and if you put some sugar on it, you can fool yourself into thinking you are snacking on something.”
The Explosion Girl loudly interjected out of nowhere.
“I thought there was nothing in your head apart from explosions, but you do get it, don’t you!?”
“You have some guts to think of me who is regarded to have high common sense amongst the Crimson Demons as a fool. Why don’t I gift your brain with a dose of Explosions too!?”
“How did we start talking about this!? Hey, don’t use Explosion magic indoors!”
Yunyun hastily grabbed Megumin as she started waving her staff around.
Looking behind her, I saw Kazuma and Aqua nonchalantly sharing a drink.
“Kazuma, the problem child is going crazy! Please do something!”
“Don’t worry, she already used Explosion today, so she doesn’t have any mana left.”
If Kazuma says so, then it should be fine. I’ll just leave her for Yunyun to deal with.
It’s starting to get late, so I guess I’ll leave the rest to tomorrow. And Kazuma’s here as well, so I might be able to get away with ordering a few mugs of beer.
I’ll be able to earn quite a bit of money with Sir’s deal, so a simple bar tab shouldn’t be a big deal.
“Good morning, Sir Vanir.”
“According to my all-seeing eyes, the sun is already far above our heads.”
“Good morning, Dust-san.”
Having woken up late after drinking my fill the previous night, I dragged myself to Wiz’s magic item store to see an apron-clad Sir Vanir and a perfectly healthy-looking Wiz.
“I really slept in after filling my belly thanks to Kazuma. Anyway, Sir, what should I do about the tranquility girl’s fruits?”
“Moi has thought of an idea, but before that, tell me about what you learnt from the guild.”
“Ah, sure. According to what I’ve heard from Luna-”
Sir folded his arms and after I relayed everything to him.
“Now, isn’t this a troublesome situation?”
“It seems to line up with what the small succubus said.”
“Did Loli Succubus say something?”
Sir Vanir let out a huge sigh.
“Didn’t she say that adventurers have stopped coming to her store yesterday, delinquent whose mind is filled with nothing but wine and women?”
“Don’t praise me too much, I’m blushing.”
“That wasn’t praise, Dust-san.”
Wiz denied it with a wry smile.
Come to think of it, Loli Succubus did say something like that yesterday, didn’t she? My memory is a little fuzzy thanks to all the beer I drunk last night.
“Moi has come across a few more details since then. One of the adventurers came back and went back to the succubus store. Apparently, those who were sent out to take care of the tranquility girl lost their nerve and ended up as bodyguards for her. What a pitiful fate.”
“Don’t tell me those idiotic adventurers will get in the way if I try and exterminate her…”
“That would appear to be the case. Now then, Moi has a wonderful idea. You should visit the succubi. You shall make a wonderful memory there!”
With a wide smile, Sir Vanir directed me to visit the Succubus shop.
He probably has some kind of plan, so I’ll do as he says for now.
Leaving the magic item shop behind, I made my way over to the ordinary looking cafe that served as the succubus store and came across the succubi lounging around.
This store is emptier than I’ve ever seen it. It seems like they are really feeling the effects of the reduced number of adventurers frequenting the store.
“Ah, Dust-san! We’ve been waiting for you!”
Loli Succubus welcomed me and showed me to my seat, and started bringing out drinks and snacks before I ordered anything.
And not only that, but the other succubi crowded around me and started pouring drinks and massaging my shoulders and basically giving me a wonderful welcome.
“I don’t know what you’re doing, but I’ll say this in advance: I have no money.”
“It’s on the house, so don’t worry.”
Loli Succubus was looking at me with a gentle smile that I’ve never seen her use before.
… Her smile didn’t reach her eyes, so I couldn’t help but be unnerved.
The other succubi who were fawning over me had the very same smiles.
They poured me wine I didn’t order and a large-breasted Succubus tried to get me to drink.
Two others pressed their bodies against me from boths sides, allowing me to take in the full extent of their chests.
… I should secure my escape route.
“It’s pretty quiet in here today, huh? You’re not in any trouble, are you? And I really have no money. If you want, I can show you the insides of my wallet.”
“Why are you so nervous?”
“What else can I be? There’s no such thing as a free lunch in this world.”
“There’s no need to be so guarded. You’ve already seen me naked at the hot springs…”
A shiver flowed down my spine.
Seriously, your smile doesn’t reach your eyes at all.
The two of them by my sides whistling and saying “Way to go.” in such an obvious, practiced manner just makes things even scarier.
Feeling the breaths of those two as they leaned in close gave me the flutters, but I just couldn’t get worked up seeing their eyes.
“Your eyes are seriously scary! I don’t need any strange persuasion methods, so just lay it on me!”
“Is that so? The truth is, there’s something we would like you to do.”
The succubi moved in closer.
Normally I would be overjoyed to be surrounded by so many scantily clad women, but there’s definitely something up with this.
After returning to the guild, Luna told me that the sooner it’s exterminated, the sooner she can give me the reward, so I set off early the next morning.
Apart from me, the party included Yunyun, Loli Succubus, and-
“Dust-san! Who are those people!?”
“You’ve met several times, haven’t you? She’s Loli Suc-… Lolisa.”
“I know Lolisa, but what’s with that crowd of robed people behind you!?”
She grabbed me by the shoulders and violently shook me.
This girl loses her composure really easily whenever something unexpected happens.
There’s just a little over a dozen succubi in hooded robes, what’s the big deal?
“My apologies, Yunyun-san. These people are my co-workers. They were planning on returning to the village that’s close to the lake, and I thought that they’d be safe if they could tag along with my reliable mage senpai. Yunyun-san… They are not a bother, are they?”
“N-Not at all! A reliable senpai, huh~? I’m sure no one told that to Megumin before~. I’ll need to write a letter to Funifura and Dodonko later!”
Yunyun’s face lit up and she happily wobbled back and forth.
She fell right for it. Loli Succubus has gotten really good at handling Yunyun.
It’d be difficult for me alone to protect all of them, but it’d be fine if Yunyun was with us. And this situation is-
“This is a genuine harem party!”
Even Kazuma would be jealous if he were to see this. I’ll brag about this to him later.
Apart from me, this party is entirely filled with women. And they are all beautiful with great bodies… Well, not including Loli Succubus.
It’d be nice if she had a little more flesh around her chest and butt, but right now she looks no different from a kid.
“I just felt a really unpleasant gaze just now.”
“It’s probably just your imagination.”
That was close, I think she almost noticed that I was comparing her to the other succubi.
The one bad thing about this situation is that all of the succubi were wearing robes that hid their figures. If they were wearing their usual outfits, this entire adventure would’ve been heaven.
I was worried over what kind of unreasonable request they’d make of me last night, but I’m really thankful for this.
To think that they wanted to come with me in order to bring back their customers with their own hands. It seemed like it brought no small amount of shame on them to have their customers charmed away by another monster.
Thinking of a way to deal with those other adventurers was giving me a headache too, so it suits my purposes just fine.
“Oh. Dust-san, here’s the wine you asked for in place of advance payment. The alcohol content is pretty high, so don’t drink it on the way, okay?”
“Ah, thank you. I think I’ll be able to see some sweet dreams tonight.”
I placed the bottle of wine into my bag.
“Leave the monsters to me! I won’t let them lay a single scratch on you!”
Yunyun seemed much more confident after getting the attentions of the succubi.
With this, the monsters that we might encounter along the way would be easily taken care off. Seems like I’ll have an easy journey ahead of me.
“Light of Saber!”
Yunyun’s more spirited-than-usual magic flashed through the air, taking out the enemy in a single strike.
This caused the succubi to crowd around her with cheers and applause and put a slight blush upon her cheeks.
We ran into monsters several times during our journey, but apart from Yunyun, none of us even needed to fight.
“Man, it’s really relaxing out here.”
“Why don’t you put in a little work too, Dust-san?”
Loli Succubus, who was walking next to me, said something stupid.
“You just don’t get it. That girl is an eternal loner who does nothing except play games by herself or read books. I’m bringing her out to someplace sunny and letting her receive the praise of the masses. Me giving up the spotlight to her is necessary for her mental health.”
“That sounds so very suspicious.”
I guess it doesn’t sound convincing when I’m saying it while snacking.
Still, I suppose I should give her a few words of gratitude too. It is true that her presence made my work a whole lot easier.
“Good work out there. Here, help yourself to some snacks.”
“Thank you. You’re pretty thoughtful for… Hey, aren’t these my snacks!?”
“I just took them out from that bag over there.”
“That’s my bag! How could you just ruffle through a girl’s luggage!? My change of clothes and underwear are in there too!”
“It’s just a day’s trip, you didn’t need a change of clothes or underwear. And I have no interest in a brat’s underwear anyway.”
I gazed out over at the lake that just became visible a short while ago while weathering her complains.
There were three men drawing water from the lake today. It’s a little hard to tell from this distance, but they seem more like mountain bandits than adventurers.
“Hmm? I think I’ve seen them somewhere before…”
I squinted, but they are too far away to make out any details.
After filling their buckets with water, the three of them headed back into the forest.
“Hey, are you even listening!?… Did you see something?”
“I feel like I’ve seen those three somewhere before.”
“Those three who are heading into the forest? I can only see their backs, so I can’t be sure.”
“They… do look a little familiar… hmm…”
Yunyun has no impression of them, but Loli Succubus seems to have the same feeling as me.
Well, they’re probably long time customers of the succubus shop.
Letting my eyes scan across the lake, I noticed a few other adventurers seemingly keeping watch around the banks. A few of them seem to have noticed us and are looking directly in our direction.
The surprised look on their faces is probably due to the troupe of robed succubi amongst us. It doesn’t look the slightest bit like any adventuring party. We must have seemed like some weird cult dressed up like this.
“Right, let’s go to where we last met her.”
“Oh, yeah, I totally forgot, but what monster did we come here to exterminate? A monster that lives around such a beautiful lake… you’re not hunting Onion Ducks, are you!? Dust-san won’t do the same sort of stuff as Megumin, right!?”
Yunyun screamed in a panic.
I have no idea why she’s so worked up, but I probably should calm her down.
“We aren’t hunting Onion Ducks. It’s, uh, you know, that plant monster. The vicious ones that entraps humans in order to use them as nutrients.”
That wasn’t a lie.
“I-Is is really that vicious?”
“Don’t be fooled by her appearance! That’s a cold-hearted and calculating woman! A bitch in sheep’s clothing!”
Loli Succubus shouted from behind, and the other succubi voiced their agreement as well.
Well, to them, tranquillity girls are a rival-like existence that steals their customers.
Yunyun seems confused about the terms they used to describe it.
I can just picture her complaining if I were to explain things to her, so let’s just carry on.
We went around the lake to reach the forest, but just before we could enter the forest itself, a bunch of people jumped out onto the path.
“The path ahead is closed.”
Over ten armoured men formed a line in front of us.
“What are you guys doing?”
“Eh? They’re all guys I’ve seen in the guild.”
Well, it’s no surprise that Yunyun would recognise them. She spends most of her time sitting in the guild, and they’re all people who didn’t come back after being sent out on the extermination quest.
Guess Loli Succubus was telling the truth after all.
“Geh, it’s the delinquent Dust.”
“This guy doesn’t know what mercy means. He’ll definitely do it.”
“He’s the sort of person who’d kill even women and children if someone pays him enough.”
“I’m standing right here, you know!?”
I’ve remembered your faces! I’ll definitely spread some bad rumours about you all back in the guild!
I would really like to give them a good thrashing, but there’s just too large a difference in our numbers. The succubi can’t be relied upon in combat, so that just leaves the loner.
“Right, Yunyun, blow these guys away with your magic.”
“W-Wait a minute! You guys are adventurers, right? We’re just here to exterminate a monster, so could you let us pass?”
“We really can’t let you through after hearing that. If you insist, you’ll have to go through us.”
These guys are completely in the palm of the tranquility girl.
They’ll be taken care of in an instant if Yunyun uses her magic…
“What’s going on, Dust-san? Why are those people protecting a monster…”
“They are being controlled by magic. After falling for the monster’s enchantments, they’re being used as pawns to get in our way.”
“H-How despicable! I won’t forgive them!”
I’m a little worried over how easily duped Yunyun is, but right now, this suits my purposes fine right now.
“Hey, don’t you guys have any shame over being used by a monster? You’re still adventurers, right? To fall for the lies of your target… seriously, what kind of adventurers are you?”
I sighed and shrugged my shoulders.
A few of them turned red and raised their voice in response to my provocations.
“I don’t want to hear that from you!”
“You are the one who’s a bigger disgrace to the guild!”
“Committing sexual harassment and causing trouble everyday! Just how much pain do you think you’ve brought to Luna’s huge breasts!”
“I wanted to conclude this peacefully, but screw it. Go get them, Crimson Demon Loner. Use Lightning Saber!”
“Please don’t call me by strange names!”
I pointed at them and shouted my command, but Yunyun didn’t follow through.
With Yunyun floundering, it ended up as a staring match.
Should I get the battle started so that she has no choice but to use her magic?
Just as I gathered my resolve and was about to jump in, someone tapped me on the shoulder.
“Leave this to us, take Yunyun-san and go!”
Loli Succubus said with a determined expression.
Oh yeah, these guys came here to bring back the adventurers.
“You guys can handle this, right?”
Well, if they have so much confidence, I can leave it in their hands.
These guys shouldn’t be able to bring themselves to harm a Succubus.
“Right, we’re leaving this to them! Let’s go, Yunyun!”
“W-Wait, didn’t you say that those girls can’t fight?”
I grabbed on her arm and started running, but she wasn’t entirely cooperative.
Explaining things now would just create new problems, so I’ll just spin a convenient lie.
“Ah, the truth is, those guys are the wives and girlfriends of those who went missing out here. They came out here to bring them back. It’s kind of embarrassing, so we kept it a secret. Sorry.”
“Is that so…? I see, in that case, we need to hurry up and defeat the monster to free them from the spell!”
Yunyun grabbed my hand and charged straight into the forest.
It’s fine to have a strong sense of justice, but you’ll get tricked by some strange men if you aren’t a little more suspicious about such stories. It really is a good thing I’m such a morally just fellow.
A few of the adventurers hurriedly chased after us, and a couple more jumped out to block out path.
“That girl seems kind, so she’s fine, but we’ll never let you pass!”
True, if it were Yunyun alone, I can definitely see her being easily won over.
It’ll be really bad if I don’t find a way to shake them somehow. Should I just beat on the guy in front of me and make a hole that way?
When I was thinking of that, the sound of cloth being flung away came from behind me.
… Why are these people staring behind me with their mouths agape.
I turned around.
Standing right there were the succubi wearing just the bare minimum amount of cloth needed to cover their important bits.
A loud cheer rang out through the forest. I can’t help but raise my voice too.
There’s no way I could tear my eyes off those succubi striking such erotic poses in that outfit.
“Why don’t you guys stop protecting the tranquility girl and come back to Axel with us~? Right now, we’ll give you a 30% discount coupon for the next~ half~ year~”
“If you come with us now, we’ll give you plenty of service, and not just in your dreams either~”
The succubus said such sweet sounding words while thrusting their chest and ass in all the right directions.
Ah, dammit, I want to drop everything and join them too.
However, even In the face of such seduction, the adventurers still put up a valiant defence.
“N-No, we have to protect that poor girl!”
Do these guys not know the true nature of the tranquility girl?
“Never mind protecting, if you stay here, you’ll die. ”
“Huh, what are you saying? We are properly eating the fruits, so we are as healthy as we can be!”
“Wait, do you guys not know that the fruit of a tranquility girl doesn’t have any nutrients? Just eating it alone won’t replenish your energy.”
The damned fools looked at me with a blank look on their faces.
They were entirely taken in by the tranquility girl’s acting and the hallucinatory properties of the fruits.
“Don’t say such foolish things. We aren’t stupid enough to fall for such an obvious lie.”
“You are stupid! Do you guys not know the first thing about a tranquility girl?”
All of them tilted their heads. It ain’t cute when a man does it. It’s just creepy.
Well, the tranquility girl is a pretty famous monster, but not many people run into them, so I suppose this is to be expected. I myself didn’t know much about them before I got involved with this case.
“Come to think of it, I have slimmed down recently…”
“Well I did think it’s strange why my body started becoming sluggish even though I’m getting lighter. Is all that lost weight because I’ve started losing muscle?”
“And here I thought it was a good thing that I could tighten my belt by another notch…”
And everyone started noticing the various abnormalities with their bodies.
Did they seriously not notice it until now?
Still, perhaps because of their lingering sympathies, or perhaps the remnants of the fruits left in their systems, they still couldn’t bring themselves to take action.
But they did start slowly moving towards the succubi. This is probably their instincts as men at work.
After all, they’ve been alone out here for quite some time. It’d be really hard for them to resist the effects of seduction right now.
Right, I can leave things to them.
“Hey, wait, do you guys intend to abandon that girl so easily!?”
The one who screamed that is a passionate looking man surrounded by two other men who seem to be his companions.
Wait, those three are…
“You fuckers again!?”
“That’s my line! Why do you have to butt in every time we try and get some healing time with a beautiful girl!?”
The man sporting a scraggly beard was the former leader of that band with strange tastes that I happen to keep running into.
“Hey, Lolicons, you’ll just complicate things, so don’t butt in. On account on the fact that we once fought side by side, I’ll let you off today, so hurry up and scram!”
“Huh!? We have no business with a granny lover like you! Hold firm, everyone! A pure and unsoiled girl is far more attractive than those women who show off their skin without shame!”
Those words seem to have struck a nerve with the succubi.
“What’s with this rude man!? Would you like to be shredded!?”
“A ripened fruit is far more delicious than an unripened one!”
Despite suffering the angry gazes of the succubi, the three of them snorted without a fear in the world.
“See? Old folks have no time left, so they are quick to lose their temper! A younger girl would laugh and go ‘you’re quite amusing, oji-chan.’ I’m sure you all understand the beauty of a young girl!”
In response to the passionate cries of the three of them, the other adventurers started slowly edging away.
“No, we’re not exactly lolicons…”
“Yeah, we’re normal.”
The appeal of their boss seemed to have the opposite effect, and the adventurers who were on the fence before started shifting towards the succubi.
A few of them are still staying put, but their numbers have been reduced by about half.
“So you stayed, comrade!”
“We properly received your passion!”
There must be something really wrong with your brain to be moved by that.
“Ah, Dust-san, those people are the customers who always request for me!”
Loli Succubus repeatedly smacked me on the back as she pointed at them.
“Yeah, of course.”
So that’s why they didn’t fall for the succubi’s seductions. Other than Loli Succubus, everyone else has a properly filled out body, so they don’t exactly fit their tastes.
That makes things simple.
“Hey, if you make an enemy of them, they’ll make sure to send you all a dream each night where you are being pursued by grannies! Don’t say I didn’t warn you!”
“I’m sorry, please forgive me!” x4
Ignoring those who immediately got down on all fours and prostrated themselves, I ran past them after Yunyun.
Shit, they delayed me at the most crucial moment. If I don’t hurry, things will get really troublesome.
After pushing past the adventurers, I proceeded deep into the forest and ran back to the same spot where I last encountered the tranquility girl.
Getting here didn’t pose a problem, but there’s a most troublesome person standing in front of me.
“Dust-san! How could you bring yourself to kill such a poor child! I always thought you were scum, but I didn’t think you were this heartless!”
Yunyun screamed at me through tears.
“Oh, shut up! Just what kind of person do you think I- Tsk, fine.”
It’s an outcome so obvious that I can’t even bring myself to be surprised.
When you leave that devious tranquility girl alone with the easily-tricked Yunyun, well, this is the natural result.
“Aah~, it must have been easy for you to trick this loner.”
“… What do you mean?”
The tranquility girl answered in a halting, uncertain manner.
Yeah, it’s easier to tug at other’s heartstrings if you pretend to be a child.
“This girl might be a monster, but she merely keeps those who wish to die company in their last days and sends them off peacefully! She didn’t do anything wrong!”
“Just assisting suicide is evil enough as it is. Plus, do you really think she only targets people who want to die? Do those idiots earlier look suicidal to you?”
“Eh, um, they always seem to have a fun time in the tavern, but… That’s not true, right?”
Yunyun turned around and addressed the tranquility girl.
The tranquility girl returned with a tearful gaze that just screams ‘please believe me’. Those tears are probably sap or something.
“Onee-chan… Do you think I’m lying…? You would believe that thug-like person with the evil looking eyes…”
“N-Not at all! I’m the idiot for almost believing that trashy human in the first place. I believe you, so don’t cry.”
Turning her back on me, Yunyun hastily tried to comfort the girl.
There must really be something wrong with you to believe a monster’s words over someone you’re familiar with.
I wanted to say a lot of things, but I merely snuck behind Yunyun and delivered a strong blow to the back of her head.
It’s not because her earlier words irked me.
I carried the collapsed Yunyun over to a spot a short distance away from the tranquility girl.
“W-What are you doing!? You raised a hand against your own companion!?”
“I merely knocked her out. There’d be a lot of problems otherwise. Anyway, there’s just the two of us now.”
“Eep! What do you intend to do with a defenseless girl!? You would do such things even with a monster!? Don’t throw away your humanity just because you aren’t popular with women!”
“Hell no! And you’re a monster disguised as a little brat. I’m not like the others, so that sort of appeal won’t work on me.”
It might look like a human, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s a monster.
As long as you keep in mind that everything’s an act, there’s nothing to fear.
“S-Save me! This scum like man is about to force himself on me-!”
“Who the hell are you calling scum!? There’s no point in yelling. All those people you’ve charmed are probably having the time of their lives with the succubi right now.”
“Eh, there are succubi here too? Those things put on a completely different face whenever men are involved.”
It fearfully looked around. It seems like it is no longer calm enough to keep up her act.
Just like how succubi have some antipathy towards tranquility girls, it seems like tranquility girls have similar feelings about succubi.
It would seem that she is well aware that those men are customers of the succubi. Right, then, this plan will work.
“You really stepped in it by taking away the customers of the succubi. I wonder what they’ll do if I bring them here? They’ll probably be angry enough to turn you into a-”
“Eeeep! U-Um, handsome onii-san over there, if you know them, could you please get them to let me off?”
“Oh, I wonder~. Well, depending on what you’re offering me, I might consider it.”
“A-As long as it is within my power, I’ll offer you anything!”
It feels like she’d do anything I ask of her right now.
First up is taking care of Sir’s request.
“Well, in that case, about those fruits of yours, is there a way to make them last longer? They were completely rotten by the time I made it back to town.”
“Ah, about that. With a few modifications, I can probably make them last about a week. How much do you need? I got a lot of nutrients recently, so I can probably make about 20 of them!”
“… Then give me about that much.”
“Right, no problem!”
With that, it started producing one fruit after another. It looked like it hurt a little the last time I was here, but this time it didn’t show even a hint of pain. So that was an act too.
I tossed them all into the magic item called the cooler box that Sir gave to me.
“Now then, can you please persuade them to let me off?”
“Hmm? What are you saying?”
“Eh!? You promised me just now! You deceived me!”
“All I promised was to consider doing that. Besides, you deceived a lot of people too. Anyway, the guild’s offering a reward for taking you out. It really is killing two birds with one stone.”
Drawing my sword, I strutted over to the dumbfounded tranquility girl.
“B-Brute! Pervert! Scum! I bet you’ve never been popular with the girls! Your pillow definitely smells strange! Ugly bastard! Your entire existence is an abnormality! I bet your neighbours are whispering that you’re the one most likely to commit a crime!”
“Oh shut the fuck up!”
I brought my sword down upon the tranquility girl who finally revealed its true personality at last.
“Fweeh!? Ah? What was I… Ah, that girl!?”
Yunyun started making a fuss the moment she woke up, craning her neck in search of the tranquility girl even while there’s still drool on her face.
“I took care of it.”
“Eeeeh! How could you!? Even if she’s a monster, to actually kill her… Where did you leave your humanity! And here I was starting to think better of you! Give me back the money I lent you!”
“You know… That thing is a monster that lives by luring people into dying at its feet and sucking the nutrients off their corpse. Beneath a tranquility girl lies a mountain of corpses. Don’t get taken in just because it looks like a human. Seriously.”
“But… But… Huh? Dust-san, there’s an empty wine bottle over there.”
“I helped myself to a little celebratory drink earlier. Anyway, there’s no reason to stay around here any longer, so let’s go.”
Pulling the still complaining Yunyun up, we started making our way back to where the succubi are.
“Huh? The ground here isn’t wet. And it doesn’t smell like the scent of alcohol is coming from you…”
After noticing the sound of the ground she stepped on has changed, Yunyun started sniffing at the air.
“You just woke up. Your nose probably isn’t working properly yet.”
I don’t know if all the adventurers beneath the tranquility girl died of their own will, but either way, it’s not wrong to present them with an offering of wine.