『 Virgilio conveyed most of what I wanted to say. In the first place, why would you want to enter a place like this when you don’t have the guts and you start to panic at the mere sight of me?』
As we started to go down the corridor in a formation with me in the lead and Virgilio-san guarding the back, Helvetia questioned me in a taunting tone, to which I replied in a very quiet voice.
「 Anyway, Betty, why didn’t you show your face for a while now?」
『 Mu, it’s not something you should be worried about……』
「 What’s wrong?」
「 Nn, it was nothing 」
Virgilio-san overheard me and reacted, but that was the end of the conversation. The sight of Helvetia, the tattered walls, the candles and the wooden floor, it’s a feeling I remember, but I’ve never been in a place like this before. Is it déjà vu?
The wooden floor creaked and made an unpleasant noise as I walked, and at first I was scared that the floor would give in, but I calmed down when I realized that Virgilio-san, who seemed to weigh several times more than I did, could walk normally and not worry.
Walking down the corridor for a while, we found a door, opened it, looked around the room, and then went back to the corridor. It was quite tedious, but since neither Virgilio-san nor I could use magic, this seemed to be the fastest way.
After about 30 minutes, Virgilio-san asked me if I wanted to have a chat to pass the time, looking at me closely.
「 Toto, your outfit is almost exactly as I’ve seen it before in the tournament. But don’t you use any weapons or armor?」
「 Nn 」
「 I’m sure that armor is softer than your defense, so I understand, but your arms and legs don’t have enough reach to attack, why don’t you at least have a weapon?」
「 Weapons, break 」
「 That’s normal because they’re consumable. If you take good care of them though, even cheap ones can last a while.」
「 No, you see, they break, after one swing. At worst, the handle breaks, just from my grip 」
「……I see 」
I’ve tried to use weapons to make up for the difference in reach, but you know, if I swing with all my might, they become useless after one attack, and if I swing with just enough force not to break them, the impact is too weak, and in the end it’s faster for me to just strike them, unfortunately.
I’ve got a lot of marble-sized pieces of steel in my tool bag, but I haven’t used them very often yet.
The conversation ended quickly, but before I could look for the next topic, I saw a figure at the end of the hallway, near the next door.
「 Wait 」
As I waved and tried to call out, Virgilio-san grabbed my hand, which I raised from the back.
「 It’s the Undead 」
When I turned around, tilting my head, Virgilio-san muttered, with me asking again to confirm. Then I looked back at the figure and my heart skipped a beat.
A man in tattered clothes was standing still facing the door, but he was looking down and his arms were hanging down slackly, which was unnatural, and he was covered with scars, which at first I didn’t notice because of the dark, so I didn’t think if he was alive.
「 Thank you for the notice, Virgilio-san 」
「 Huh, you haven’t been paying attention after all. More than that, can we get to it?」
「 U, U~n……」
The thought of that thing attacking me makes me hesitate, I’ve seen a few dead bodies since I came to this world, but moving dead bodies, that’s a different story.
「 Don’t worry about it. They may look like people, but they’re no different from monsters.」
『 Mm, if you want to stop the movement with one blow, blow its head off. 』
「 G, Got it 」
The undead ahead of me reacted and turned around, their vacant red eyes staring at me. I was scared, but Virgilio and Helvetia were there, so I was not so terrified.
By the way, these eyes of mine are really the same as the Undead’s. I can see why the strong adventurers I’ve met so far were surprised to see my eyes.
As I clenched my fists and tried to run, my opponent also started walking towards me, dragging his feet and wobbling his whole body, but he was too slow.
I backed away a little because the movement was weird, but seeing this slowness and the fact that it was coming towards me without thinking made me calm down, albeit slightly.
As soon as I hit him with enough force to keep his head from disappearing, I heard the living dead’s bones break, and he fell to the ground flat on his back.
『 Don’t get distracted, the Undead are very durable, they won’t die from something like this.』
「 Uhee 」
When Helvetia told me to keep focused, he really wriggled his body and tried to get up, but this was even more creepy than before.
「 Oryaa 」
I kicked it without looking, but only the upper half of its body was torn off and fell nearby, however little blood was spilled.
「 Wait, that should probably be more than enough.」
I never thought that the upper part of its body would be torn off, and I was expecting blood to spurt out, but I was surprised to find that it was not so scary when I beat it.
「 Ah, it varies from individual to individual, but usually the ones that turn into the living dead like this are already drained of blood, probably because they were murdered.」
「 I see 」
If that’s the case, I should have just gone all out and popped its head off from the start.
「 I’ve fought in this mansion a few times myself, and they’re all pretty similar in strength, though you can never be too careful, but I think it’s safe to say that they’re all of this caliber. 」
「 Nn, got it 」
After that, we continued to walk down the corridor, finding doors and entering them repeatedly, while beating the Undead to the ground.
It might be a bit weird, but when you start to think of Undead as a kind of monster, it’s not so scary anymore. I’d still be surprised if it showed up out of nowhere, though.
Incidentally, the so-called 《 Haunting Ghost 》 which was almost transparent in its pure white robe and hood, dissipated when hit by my punch. It felt as if I had punched a piece of cloth.
I was surprised when the ghost appeared suddenly at first, but Virgilio-san said he could beat it with his sword, and I had a track record of punching magic back, so he told me I had plenty of leeway… so I just went at it and punched it.
「 But, I can’t imagine an Undead den of this size being built in this country.……」
Virgilio-san muttered, so I stopped and asked him back. I’ve never seen an Undead before, but aren’t Undead supposed to build these nests to lure living people into them?
「 It’s true that there are many Undead in places that look like this, but this country doesn’t have monsters that are vicious enough to be a potential disaster, it’s quite far from the demon territory, the climate is good, and there is no shortage of food.」
「 Eh, do you mean that there was some kind of massacre here?」
「 No. It’s not impossible, but given the age of this building, it’s hard to consider that line of thinking, and I’m guessing something happened in the last decade or so…… I have a bad feeling about this.」
Hmmm, I just got to thinking, Virgilio-san, why are all these Undead gathering in this building when this building has nothing to do with them? Maybe it’s because it’s an old building.
No, wait, I think Dell-san was talking about something related to this…… There was Marius, who was repeatedly experimenting with Undead?
「 Hey, Toto, what’s up?」
I stopped, tilted my head and started to think about it, so when Virgilio-san called me, I was surprised.
「 Hmm, it was nothing 」
It’s not like Dell-san doesn’t want me to tell him, but I’m not sure, and I’m hesitant to tell Virgilio-san, so I decide not to say anything for now and move on.
「 Wait, this wall looks like it has been repaired recently.」
As I was walking down the corridor, Virgilio-san noticed that the color of the wall was different in one part of the room. After he mentioned it, I took a closer look, but the candlelight was too dim, and he said, 『 It might be a little different if you look closely 』 but I would never have noticed it if I had been alone.
As expected of an A Rank adventurer.
「 Hmm, should I break it?」
「 Yup, give it a try 」
I clenched my fists and held them out before my body and asked, Virgilio-san nodded in response.
I punched the wall and as expected, the wall broke and a small hole opened up, revealing a hidden passage ahead. I put my hand into the small hole and pulled the stone wall to collapse it.
「 Seriously, your monstrous strength sure comes in handy when it comes to punching through walls this thick.」
「 Nn, when it comes to rock, can easily deal with them, if it’s normal one 」
The hidden passageway that finally opened was so narrow that Virgilio-san had to bend down to enter, but a little further on, we found ourselves in a corridor as wide as the one he had been in.
There was candlelight in this room, but the smell of mold was so strong that I pulled up my clothes to cover my nose. I’m going to get sick if I stay here for long.
「 If my prediction is correct, there must be a sorcerer or a device ahead of us. Let’s keep our guard up and continue.」