This was the most grueling, time-consuming chapter I’ve ever done, even more so than Consulting’s Iris chapter, but it was an absolutely breathtaking experience that was definitely worth it. Well played Akatsuki Natsume, well played.
In other announcements, this has been brought to you as a support a series bonus for thanksgiving!
While it’s still in season, I’d first like to thank the chef of my college dining hall that’s courteously invited me to his house for thanksgiving, along with all the other students that were alone on campus during this break! I’d like my buddies who played league with me over break, and most of all I’d like to thank all of you who’ve been following my ‘fanfic’ and translations, and who motivate me and make all of this possible!
I hope you enjoy this wonderful chapter!
––Everything was going smoothly.
First, the thieving group obtained a secret base on the first day… No, I mean, a base of operations hideout was established, and I gained a powerful fighter as an underling.
Then, recently, I got a regular allowance… No, I mean, I managed to secure funding for the thieving group, and got a healing magic user to join our ranks.
To be honest, I never thought that it would go so well.
Rather, I feel that the thieving group might reach a scale that was greater than I had initially projected.
That was because…
“—Megumin-san, listen listen! If onee-san sends a letter to the Axis cult headquarters regarding the thieving group, I’m sure that people who want to join the group will come rushing in. Isn’t this a good chance to expand our forces in one fell swoop?”
Cecily shrewdly moved her luggage into the largest mansion in Axel that was our base of operations. The expression on her face made it seem as though she was the owner of this mansion, but I knew otherwise.
“…Axis cultists? Uhm, could you please put a little bit of thought into it?”
Cecily, who idled on the expensive looking sofa that taken for herself, was the splitting image of Aqua.
If all the Axis cultists were like this, then I feel that I should hold back a little.
“If I write that, ‘besides me, the thieving group is composed of lolis’, I’m confident that Zesta-sama will resign from his position as the head priest, and come here immediately, but that would be really troublesome wouldn’t it? Well, if you’re troubled by something, feel free to borrow the power of the Axis cult anytime you like ok?”
“T-, Thank you very much, when the time comes, I will be in your care.”
The only time I’ll be exhausted to that extent is after my magic power is drained from using explosion magic.
Towards Cecily and I, who both sunk into sofa in the same manner, Yunyun, who was reading some letter, restlessly said:
“U-, Uhm, Megumin? This is about the letter I recently sent to my dad but… he wrote back that ‘because of how cool and fun it sounds, it seems that there are a lot of people who want to become involved in this’…”
“………Nope, all the Crimson Magic clansmen have the important job of monitoring the demon king’s castle. Furthermore, they’re an important emergency force for the capital in case anything goes wrong. It wouldn’t be right for them to come for something like this right?”
There aren’t any problems when it comes to the fighting power of the people of the village.
And there wouldn’t be any problems if our goal was to raid the demon king’s castle, but our opponents were corrupt nobles.
Furthermore, we weren’t burglars, but chivalrous thieves.
“Well, I guess it would be more festive around here if we gained more companions. Then just send a reply that says ‘Please assist us when some great problem occurs’ ok?”
“I-, I guess you’re right, when it comes to that, we’ll surely…”
Hearing my ambiguous words, the master loner smiled at the thought of more companions.
I can’t help but get the feeling that the scale of our operations will be bigger than I thought.
Yes, that was because—
“Yesterday I was boasting to my father about how I was making an organization for the sake of justice with my friends, and he told me that I could borrow as many of the best knights as I wanted. Also, he said that I could take as many much money as needed! Big boss, if you’re troubled by anything, feel free to tell me about it ok?”
…Yep, everything was really going smoothly.
But how should I say this… I feel that the scale of the organization is already beyond what I had envisioned.
“You three gave me a list of names of people who want to join the organization, but I haven’t really scanned through all of them. More importantly, from a numbers perspective, there are a lot of knights and mercenaries who aren’t skilled enough for this. My goal is to find people who would follow their own way regardless of whether or not they become wanted criminals. To find people who would join our thieving group to help others from the shadows. No matter how much I think about it, these aren’t people who are suited for this.”
After a short rest, and recovering enough magic power to move, I scanned through the stack of paper the three of them handed to me.
Listed were Axis cultists, Crimson Magic clansmen, and famous knights and powerful adventurers from the capital.
Our goal was to be a small group of elites, just like those people.
Now that my plan has come into motion, there shouldn’t be any earth shattering developments that would make this come to a halt.
After earnest explaining this to them, Yunyun broke into a grin.
“…Oi, if you have something to say, let’s hear it.”
“There’s nothing really—? I was just thinking that Megumin, as usual, is weak towards sudden developments al—right?”
The loner, who acted as though she had seen through me, stood poised for an attack. Then, Iris restlessly said.
“Big boss, I understand what you’re thinking, but why don’t we recruit a few people? Whilst I can serve as the vanguard for two magicians and a priest with my ability to use a sword and magic, I would like there to be at least one more front-line class in our party.”
“We’re not going to hunt monsters, so there’s no need to worry about our party balance alright? In the first place, our combat power is already overkill if we’re planning to attack a noble’s mansion.”
We had two archwizards of the Crimson Magic clansman, and a balance-breaker princess who inherited the hero’s blood.
Though I’m not really sure how to describe the last person, her help was appreciated as she would be the healer in the chance that something went wrong.
Despite what I said, Iris showed a troubled expression.
“Uhm, are we not going to go on adventures occasionally? Also, I would like some kouhai group members as well. To be an underling forever is a bit…”
“…About adventures, well, since this loner over here is looking at me with sparkly eyes of anticipation, I’ll consider it. Also, you want to have more recruits for such a baseless reason? There’s no choice, I’ll promote you to my left-hand man, so please be patient. By the way, Yunyun is my right-hand man, so overall you are number-three in this organization.””
Even though I called them my left and right hand, it’s not like I gave them a salary or an allowance, so they were merely superficial terms.
Also, between the four of us, ‘number three’ didn’t really mean anything, yet Iris seemed to be innocently happy.
Despite how strong she was, she was still a child.
Unexpectedly, this girl might be just as simple as Yunyun.
“What about onee-san!? Hey Megumin, why does onee-san get nothing!? Onee-san wants to brag to other people as well, so please give me a title!”
The problem was this adult who seemed more childish than Iris.
Cecily gripped my shoulders and shook me back and forth.
“Onee-san is the leader of the Axel branch of the Axis cult right? So don’t you already have a great title to brag about?”
“That’s not it! Even I want a title like right hand or left hand or lover or husband or wife! I want a title that would bring our relationship closer!”
“There were some weird terms mixed in there! …Then I think it would be fine to put you as my consultant, since priests are supposed to listen to confessions anyway. If there’s anything I’m troubled with, I will consult with you, onee-san… . …Consult…”
Consult with this person…?
“Why did you suddenly stop Megumin-san? If you have anything you’re troubled with, feel free to consult with onee-san anytime! In particular, my specialty is consulting with love troubles! Come on, since you’re going through puberty right now, isn’t this perfect?”
The selfish adult Cecily, suddenly mentioned something that made me lose made me feel agitated.
How should I say this? This person was occasionally sharp-minded.
Without showing my agitation, I said—
“What are you saying onee-san, I am someone who pursues the ultimate path of explosions. I don’t have to free time for any rambling love affairs.”
“That’s right Cecily-san. If Megumin is ever legible for a girls’ talk, the first thing I’ll do is suspect whether she had been impersonated by a doppelganger.”
Iris watched the conversation unfold in a restless manner, whist Yunyun, who I’ve known the longest amongst the people present, looked me with a condescending gaze, as she budged into the conversation and said unnecessary things.
…In any case, this girl would occasionally act absentmindedly.
“Mhm. Onee-san has observed that, recently, Megumin-san has a lot of openings in her behavior, and that she’s gotten … Also, there are times where she will show a maiden-like expression.”
Although I looked down on Axis cultists in general, perhaps this onee-san might be more than just a simple deviant.
“Precisely speaking, you perceive onee-san as something like a lover don’t you, Megumin-san!? Well, I guess that’s puberty for you, so I guess it can’t be helped right? Onee-san is ready ok!? Anyway, how does this sound? Megumin-san will be the husband for four days in a week, and I’ll be the husband for the other three. I think that Megumin-san is manlier than I am in many ways.”
It seems that my worries were for naught.
On the other hand, Iris, who seemed to be interested in what Yunyun meant by ‘girls’ talk’ seemed to be ready to ask a bold question. Well, I can’t allow myself to be questioned any further.
“That’s enough, let’s return to our topic for today! …We have obtained a hideout and a base of operations. Our next task is to gather proficient talent. As of now, we’re still lacking a variety of elements for a proper operational structure, so I would like to gather some decent people.”
“Please wait, you said that we’re lacking a variety of elements right? But I guess that I do agree that we need to gather some decent people first. Uhm, for example, people who can go with me to eat meals outside of times where we’re gathered like this, or really kind people…”
“Big boss, vanguards! Let’s go find vanguard adventurers for the sake of going on adventures!”
“According to onee-san’s information, there are four young rich men in this town. I’d rather it not be a high-class blond-haired handsome guy, but if they can give me a life of comfort, then I guess I’ll have to compromise.
Regardless of who it was, why did none of them have any sort of unity?
Now, I can’t help but think that Kazuma, who usually leads our group, is doing something amazing.
“No, we’re going to look people with the ‘thief’ job, who are suitable for our goals. We aren’t here to gather friends or gather adventurers or gather prospective fiancés. As of now, our group is still very far from a real thieving group.”
“Onee-san has always been called a thief for nabbing the provisions of the Eris cultists. Aren’t I suitable material for a thieving group?”
“Do you want to change your job from priest to thief? If you want to, I can go with you to the adventurers’ guild to get a class change you know?”
It was then—
“About the ‘high-class blond-haired handsome guy’ you were talking about, does everyone know? In truth, a former noble from a neighboring nation came to this town to be an adventurer.”
For some reason, Iris’ eyes shone as he said that.
From a broad perspective, nobles were people who were born with high latent talent.
While they were not as thorough as royalty like Iris, they tended to send their daughters to become the mistress of heroes. In such a manner, they earnest took their bloodline.
“A former noble? I don’t understand why they fell from their position, but they probably have a lot of hidden assets. Onee-san is interested.”
Rather than the person’s abilities, Cecily showed interest in the other details regarding the person, and her eyes began to shine, but—
“This is quite a famous topic of discussion amongst royalty and nobles in various countries. A young boy from a lower-ranked noble family managed to obtain the super-rare job of ‘Dragon Knight’, not to mention, he was also the youngest person in history to obtain it. The young boy showed his talent as a dragon knight, and he was unrivaled in the kingdom with the spear. Furthermore, he was loved by dragons from the moment of his birth. With his seriousness, honesty, and ability to persevere, he was revered as a role-model for any knight. As should be expected however, he came to yearn for a young girl…”
The young boy was tasked with the role as a bodyguard for the princess of the nation.
He, who yearned for her more than any other, realized that his fleeting love for the princess of his age was unreasonable.
As should be expected of a member of royalty, the princess already had a fiancé. Knowing well of the differences in their status, the young boy passed these bittersweet days without telling her of what he thought.
However, by chance, the young boy came to know what the princess thought…
“—After that, the boy, despite knowing of the great consequences, rode off with the princess on the back of a dragon. No matter how hard the nation mobilized their forces to search, not a single trace of them was found. However, after a week, the boy and the princess returned to the royal castle. The young boy was subjected to punishment, his qualifications as a dragon knight were taken away, and his household disbanded.”
For some reason, Iris seemed to be overcome with emotion as she continued to tell the story. The rest of us, who were intently listening, deeply exhaled.
“Basically, he became a good-for-nothing that kidnapped the princess and sacrificed his path to becoming an elite, right? Kidnapping a princess is the job of an evil magician or the demon king, and to be honest, I think that stealing away someone’s work is something that should never be done.”
“Y-, You’re mistaken! Despite the differences in status between the boy and the princess that would not allow this love to be realized, their feelings still managed to align with one another! It is a wonderful story! Beyond what I’ve already told you, apparently, the princess had wished to ride on the back of a dragon. Then, riding behind the boy, the princess had surely said something like this: ‘It would be great if we could stay together like this, and go somewhere faraway…’ -!”
“KYA-! What is this, this is amazing! B-, Basically, this person had threw aside his fame as the hero of the nation, and his path towards becoming an elite, all for the sake of fulfilling the princess’ small wish…!?”
For some odd reason, Yunyun grew excited as she listened to Iris’ delusional story.
“Yes, that’s exactly right! Willing to accept any punishment as a result of his actions, he fulfilled this unforgiveable dream! This is the true form of the selfish delusions and rumors amongst the ladies of nobility and royalty! How is it? Isn’t a cool development like this something that you long for? Isn’t a tragic love like this truly bitter and heartrending…-!?”
Though, she just said that ‘this is the true form of the selfish delusions and rumors’.
“Alice-chan, are you saying that this person was chased out of his country, and came to this town to be an adventurer!? Let’s recruit him! I will definitely make this person my comrade!”
Albeit in a selfish manner, the two of them were fired up. I guess it does sound a bit cool.
If it were true that is.
Regarding the star-crossed lovers portion of the story, perhaps Iris, who was too a princess, held some affection towards it.
As for Yunyun, who didn’t have a single friend or companion, she was probably moved by the very existence of someone who would go to that extent for someone else.
“By the way, I wonder what happened during that one-week period where they were on the run? Did some life-changing experience happen during that time? A-, And how far did they go…!”
“What are you imagining Alice-chan? That…! T-, That is…-!”
The two flushed faced people began to make a Kya~ Kya~ ruckus.
…Well, it seems like the two of them were thoroughly imagining a situation that girls in puberty would imagine.
“Geez, stop being noisy and let’s go find this person. I have the experience of being in the same bath and sleeping in the same bed with Kazuma. As for our relationship, I suppose that we’ll probably go all the way to the end like this. I’m sure that that person is older than us, so I think that it should be a given that he crossed that line.”
“Wait a second Megumin, I think I just heard you say something very important!”
The two of them who had been immersed in a heated discussion, immediately sprung from their seat on the sofa.
“What do you mean by very important? Wouldn’t it be strange instead for someone of my age to have no experience whatsoever? Rather, since we live under the same roof, shouldn’t this kind of development be a given? Well then, let’s go catch that so-called virtuoso. You should all learn from onee-san, and act a bit calmer…”
Nothing more needed to be said to the two who placed their hands over their mouths in inconcealable surprise.
“Hey Megumin, Cecily-san is asleep…”
“…Since it’ll be a pain to wake her up, let’s just leave her like this.”
I feel like I understand how Kazuma, who takes care of Aqua all the time, feels now.
Walking through the back alleyways of the town of Axel, we headed towards the adventurer’s guild.
The reason we didn’t use the main streets was because a certain person had probably come to this in search of Iris.
While we can stop her from being brought back eventually, it would be for the best if we didn’t do anything to stand out.
“Well then, how are we going to search for this former Dragon Knight that was also an elite amongst nobles?”
Wanting to dispel the lifeless atmosphere that was unique to the back alleyways, I asked Iris.
“That’s right… That person probably has the golden hair that is inherited by nobility. Also, since he had become the youngest dragon knight, he should be fairly strong, and should stand out a lot in this town. Finally, if we’re looking for distinctive traits, then we should look for someone who is proficient with the spear.”
I haven’t really seen many blonde-haired males in this town.
The one’s I’ve seen are probably related to nobility anyway.
And I’m don’t really have any recollection of any blonde-haired male adventurers either…
“M-, More importantly boss! A little earlier, about what you said about taking a bath with onii-sama, and sleeping in the same bed as onii-sama…”
Iris, who had been brooding over what I said since she learned of it, timidly asked me.
“It’s exactly as I said. Well, in any case, this isn’t anything strange for a healthy adolescent guy and girl living under the same roof.”
I turned a sidelong glance towards the two, who were speechless, and – allowing a victorious smile to surface – I continued.
“To add onto that, recently I’ve made a promise with Kazuma to go to his room to play, and I probably seem like a simple and easy girl. Well, about that, I’m purposely delaying the promise as what you might call an adult tactic…”
In the face of my tale, the two of them showed expression of fearful awe.
“I-, In any case, you’re actually just getting cold feet aren’t you Megumin? Like you’re afraid that some trouble will happen when you get the chance… In the first place, it’s not like you can prove any of what you said. If something like that really happened, then it’s probably after some very shocking things happened, and you used the chance to do some desperate things… At least that’s how I see it.”
“Shut up, what can a loner that hasn’t even held a boy’s hand understand?”
Yunyun looked at me with teary eyes for a brief moment, and took out the memo that recorded the history of duels between my mature self and her. She promptly added a star that represented victory onto it.
Then, despite her grumbly demeanor, Yunyun pretended to be calm as she mumble to herself.
“At any rate, a blonde-haired person in this town, who is proficient with the spear… Furthermore, he’s probably a person with proper manners and a gentleman who is both serious and compassionate… Uhm… S-, Surely, he is also a tall and cool person as well… Or at least, it would be great if it was true…”
“Your own wishes were mixed in at some point you know? Well, a lot of the nobles are good-looking as well, and I’m sure there’s some of them who are serious if we talk to them. I’m fairly sure that we’ll be able meet them…”
Well, if they had those distinctive traits, then surely, we’ll find him pretty soon—
“I’ve never heard of an adventurer that has all those traits.”
Just as I was having these carefree thoughts—
Arriving at the adventurer’s guild, we hurriedly asked the receptionist onee-san, but…
“Is there anyone who’s close to that description? There aren’t a lot of spear-using adventurers to begin with, and in this town, there’s a particularly large amount of problem children amongst the adventurers. I’m sure that a serious and compassionate person like that would stand out.”
“But it’s not like Megumin-san is part of the adventurer party that stands out the most or anything, right? Well, to be specific, I can think of people who matches one or two terms of your description, but I have no impression of anyone who matches all of them…”
Hearing what the troubled onee-san said, we glanced at each other.
“… Well, then could you introduce us to those who match a few of the conditions I mentioned?”
In order to find the dragon knight who had been driven out of the neighboring country, we followed the guidance of the receptionist onee-san to find the people in question—
“—I can’t remember doing anything shameful in my lifetime, and I’m confident that I have lived a true and honest life. I was quite skilled, and in the past, my name was fairly well known, but… What do you need from a retired, veteran old man like myself?”
The first person we were introduced to was an oji-san
“Erm, we wanted to hear oji-san’s heroic tales. Come on, Alice, Yunyun, it’s your turn. Alice, don’t you like to hear about people’s adventures because you look up to adventurers? And Yunyun is fine with any conversation. Aren’t you happy to be able to talk to people?”
“Oji-san, please feel free to tell us about your adventures when you were young!”
“Eh-!? It’s true that I’m happy to be able to talk to anyone, but in the first place, doesn’t the age of the person in question not match up at all?”
Leaving the serious-looking oji-san alone for the time being, I decided to press onward.
“—It’s true that I think that I’m fairly accomplished and skilled, but I’ve haven’t even held a spear in my hand before. Oh, but if you’re talking about the other ‘spear’, I hold it in my hands every night. You get it? GAHAHAHAHA!”
The next person we were introduced to was an adventurer who threw the worst kind of lowlife joke at us the moment we met. I promptly buried my fist in his face.
“—It’s true that the spear is my forte, and amongst the people I compete with, all of them know my name… Even then, this is quite rare, to think that there would be girls who would be interested in the sport of spear tossing.
We were even introduced to people who weren’t adventurers.
“Oh? What’s this, aren’t you the explosion girl? What do you want with me? I’m not gonna talk about money alright? After all, there aren’t any places that would lend me any more money, and I don’t have any money left for booze or food either. Actually, if I ever get my hands on a fortune, I’ll pay you back several times over, so let me borrow some ok?”
The last person we were introduced to was a blonde-haired delinquent called Dust.
Despite not having any money, Dust wasted his afternoon away sitting at the corner of the adventurer’s guild, without so much as any intention to do any job. The onee-san who introduced me to this thing seemed to quickly retreated away.
“Sorry, but this thing is definitely not what we’re looking for. What we’re looking for is a young blonde handsome and strong man. Furthermore, he is someone who is accomplished, honest, and has the capacity to persevere. Most importantly, he is a gentleman that uses a spear. Other than the color of its hair, this thing doesn’t match for anything else right? Not to mention the shade of blonde seemed to be faded as well.”
“If there was really a wonderful person like that, then I would actually like you to introduce him to me, but… Well, in any case, there aren’t any more adventurers who align with the distinctive traits that you provided. To begin with, Lalatina-san, and Dust-san are the only two adventurers in this town who have blonde hair… Well, uhm, I suppose that he is quite skilled only when it comes to drinking, and he does accomplish something…”
“The only thing that he accomplishes is spreading a bad name about us! I saw you telling the new adventurers to not go close to that thing you know!?”
It’s was a truly terrible thing for people to end up like this thing, but this in particular gave off the feeling of a complete and utter mistake of a person.
“What the heck! Ain’t I your friend Yunyun! Give me some booze ok!”
“Rather than friends, we’re just mere acquaintances ok!? The people around us are giving us contemptful gazes, so please stop already!”
At some point during the time I was talking to the receptionist lady, the thing had grabbed Yunyun.
I gave a hand signal towards Iris, who was still listening to the oji-san’s adventuring stories.
“Alice, listen closely. That thing is the only blonde-haired male adventurer in this town.”
“We were just getting to the good part where the oji-san’s spear broke, and he awakened the power in his bare hands to strike the one-hit bear… but that aside, if that person is the only one with blonde hair, then why don’t we first inquire about him?”
Iris, who returned to the group, suggested that we first investigate.
“No. If I had to choose a single person that says the most useless things, ‘this person’ would be it. If we keep our eyes off that thing for a moment, it’ll tempt Kazuma to go to some shady place to play around. It’s the living definition of the so-called ‘bad friend’.”
Glancing at the delinquent man who was still quarreling with Yunyun, I strongly insisted that we do otherwise.
More importantly, Yunyun was currently objecting with him in a dignified and mature manner. I wonder what happened between them.
I’ve heard some rumors that Yunyun has recently been associating with some strange people, but is there some connection with that thing?
I haven’t really cared until now, but I can’t help but feel a bit worried. At least, until this strange man is arrested.
“I remember now! I’ve seen that onii-san before. When I came to this town a while ago, this person suddenly bumped in an onee-san in the main street, and began to say that he broke his leg. He threatened to force the onee-san to buy him food anytime for reparations. I remember that Claire punished him afterwards…”
What the heck was this man doing?
Ultimately, it seems that he prepared to readily throw away his pride. From what I can tell from here, Dust was currently begging for alcohol money, and to achieve that, he performed a dogeza at Yunyun’s feet.
Yunyun, in an embarrassed and panicked manner, took out some money from her purse.
In some sense, performing a dogeza towards someone else in public was a type of threat.
A dragon knight who performs a dogeza towards a younger girl in public…
“…Mhm. It’s going to be useless isn’t it? Well, that person has probably gone to some other town by now, and to start with we don’t even know his name, so what can we really do? Let’s just give up. Why don’t we play around in our hideout for a bit and call it a day?”
“Boss, I think that it’s on occasions like these where information gathering becomes the important work of a thief. Was it really good for us to establish ourselves as a thieving group…”
Iris had struck where it hurts the most, but even if she says that now…”
“Well said Alice! That’s right, we are a thieving group, and should be seeking excellent thieves instead!”
“E-, Even if you say that Megumin-san, the fact you, a magician, are the head of a thieving group is a bit…”
“Shut up, that doesn’t matter right now! Not when I’ve found an excellent thief at with such great timing! Come on Alice, let’s go!”
Bringing the Iris – who seemed uneasy about everything – along, I rushed over to where someone I hadn’t seen in a long time was currently sitting.
“It’s been a while, Chris. This might be a bit sudden, but I’ve made a thieving group, so please join.”
At my greeting and invitation, Chris sprayed out the milk that she was drinking.
“What are you doing? A young lady shouldn’t spray milk all over the place in public you know?”
“Keh-, Keho…! I didn’t do it on purpose! It’s just that you said something outrageous all of a sudden! Didn’t you, Megumin!?”
Chris, who I haven’t seen since the Goddess Eris Thanksgiving Festival, had been resting with a pleased expression on her face, as though she had finished a day’s work.
Seeing that, I called out to her, but…
“Even if I said something outrageous, it won’t be strange for you, a thief, to belong a thieving group, right?”
“T-T-T-That’s true! That’s true, but…! More importantly, what do you mean by thieving group!? Megumin, could it be that you know my real identity!?”
I had a few questions regarding Chris’ incomprehensible statements. Meanwhile, Iris finally caught up.
I explained my relation with Chris to Iris.
For some reason, Iris, who should be meeting Chris for the first time, tilted her head a little when she saw her.
“Uhm, you are called Chris-san right? Excuse my impoliteness, but have we met before?”
Hearing Iris suddenly say such things, Chris also tilted her head in the same fashion…”
“Did you call yourself Alice? I feel like I’ve seen you before somewhere… hm, aaahhh-!?”
It seems that she was familiar with the appearance of Princess Iris.
Well, regardless of Iris’ subtle alias, it was impossible to hide her face.
And it shouldn’t be too strange for pictures of royalty to be spread around, right?
“As expected of a well-informed thief. It seems that you have figured out Alice’s true identity. She is travelling incognito, so if something were to happen, she will be in trouble, so please…?”
I thought Chris was surprised after realizing that Iris was a member of royalty, but I can’t help but get the feeling that something was off with her expression.
“T-, That’s right! It’s because I’m a thief alright!? Someone of my level is able to recognize anyone at first sight you see! Well, since you’re travelling incognito, I won’t do anything alright? W-, Well then, I have some minor business to attend to, so…”
Without a moment’s delay, I grabbed onto Chris, who was about to excuse herself with some meaningless statement.
“Where are you going, Chris? I have something to ask of well-informed thief like yourself.”
“H-, How should I say this? I’m a pure and righteous thief of justice that won’t do anything that makes me feel guilty, so I don’t think I’ll be of much use to you.”
Chris cast repeated glances towards Iris, and seemed to act suspiciously.
“I won’t ask you to do anything in particular, Chris. I mentioned this earlier, but I am currently recruiting talented and adept members for my thieving group. We have gathered knights, archwizards, and priests, but since we’re a thieving group, I would like to recruit a fundamental thief…”
“You gathered knights, archwizards, and priests? Hey, if that’s the case, rather than being a thieving group, wouldn’t it be more profitable for your group to just be an honest and true mercenary group? Also, it seems the people who join will go through a lot of hardship…”
Chris showed a mixed feelings about this, and turned towards Iris. As I thought, she was doubtful about Iris’ presence.
Well, I can’t excuse the fact that all we have is combat power. Since we don’t have a thief that is fundamental for our group, I would like Chris to join us. Also, since we’re searching for someone right now, we would like you to help us with that.”
“A thieving group huh… Well, I’ve also had the experience of doing something I longed to do, so I understand how you feel ok?”
Towards Chris, who – unexpectedly – seemed to have a good vibe:
“You might not understand what I’m about to talk about, but actually, I long to create a organization that is like a certain thieving group. …Anyway, do you know about the masked thieving group?”
“Mhm, I know about them. I probably know about them more than anyone.”
As expected of Chris. She had a web of information that only a thief would have.
I bent my body down, and lowered my voice to speak.
“Don’t tell anyone that I told you this, but all the people in my organization are people who look up to that masked thieving group. We were moved by that masked thieving group’s noble behavior, and we plan to help them from the shadows. To say it another way, we are an expansive group that is something like a fan club.”
“I see—, you’re telling me that huh—? …Hey Megumin, I just want to confirm, but you’re not joking around right?”
Replying to Chris, who seemed to have undergone some sort of enlightenment:
“What are you saying? Of course I’m serious about this! Ah, did you thinking that helping wanted criminals was a joke? I’m just going to tell you this, but despite them being wanted, they have a reason for doing what they do.
“Ahh mhm, it’s alright. I understand what you mean, so it’s alright. Basically, in order to assist that masked thieving group, you decided made a sub-group on your own? And now, you want me to be a part of that?”
“That’s right. Please, I don’t care if you are just a provisional member. Well, in this situation, you’d start as an underling, but…”
Hearing what I said, Chris showed an expression that was a mixed of perplexment and doubt.
“A-, An underling… I will be an underling of a sub-group of the masked thieving group huh… No well, I’m fine with being a part of this alright? More importantly Megumin, I’m going to ask again, but you’re not joking about any of this are you?”
“…Why are you so full of doubt? You’ve been like this for a while now.”
“During the Goddess Eris Thanksgiving Festival, I ended up helping with the Axis cult’s stall somehow. I’m fine with this, but I was just wondering why it is that I – despite my supposedly good luck – always find myself in these interesting situations…”
We filled Chris, who decided to join our group in a fairly smooth fashion, in on the details regarding the dragon knight.
“If the former dragon knight had gold hair, then isn’t it that person over there?”
Saying that, Chris – of course – pointed towards Dust.
Unwilling to set Yunyun free after merely one drink, he started some sort of lecture.
If Yunyun was talking to that man about how to make acquaintances, then it would probably involve beating someone up, right?
Deeply invested into the conversation, Yunyun enthusiastically nodded her head, and began to take notes.
“You’re mistaken about that thing. Even someone as well-informed as you has some things you don’t understand I see.”
“Eh-!? B-, But, the person you’re looking for has blonde hair right? If we’re talking about blonde-haired adventurers in this town, then I can only think of him and Darkness.”
That question was already nothing new.
“The only thing the person we’re looking for and that delinquent have in common is their blonde hair. Geez, you have a bad eye for things sometimes, don’t you Chris?”
“I-, Is that so!? In this situation, I don’t want you of all people to tell me that I have a bad eye for things!”
Hearing her say that, I noticed something else.
“…You’ve been acting awfully docile for a while now. What’s the matter?”
“Yes, I’ve also had the impression that I’ve met Chris-san before, but I can’t remember where…”
“You don’t need to think too hard about! In the first place, I don’t remember meeting Alice either, so this is without a doubt the first time we’ve met!”
Chris has been acting rather turbulent for a while now, but—
“More importantly, about the person you’re looking for, my intuition tells me that it is absolutely that blonde-haired person over there. He might be carrying a sword right now, but I think that his footwork and the distance he keeps between his opponents are that of a spear user. Furthermore, from what I can see, he’s at the level of a master.”
Chris’ expression quickly turned serious. Then, Yunyun suddenly stood up, and looked directly at Dust, who seemed to have starting doing something unusual.
“Alright, look closely now. This is a method to not underestimate others, and it even works on people you’ve just met. Since you have a strong desire for friends, there’s a part of you that tries to serve or please other people. But you see, if you underestimate an adventurer, then it’s all over. This is pretty standard, but when you first meet someone, you should first decide how you approach them!”
Directly in our line of sight, Dust was squaring his shoulders as his body began to rock from side to side. As if was trying to shake off his drunkenness, he began to move.
Yunyun, seemed to be Dust’s companion, was bathed in curious gazes. Her body seemed to shrink out of embarrassment.
“…I see, so that’s the footwork of a spear master? You’re eye for observation is quite considerable indeed, Chris.”
“Why did that person do something unusual like that with such timing!?”
––After that, Dust, who gained a monopoly on curious gazes for the time being, walked out of the guild – together with Yunyun – as if nothing was out of the ordinary.
Yunyun sent countless glances towards us to signal her plea for help, but since Chris had said Dust is absolutely the person we’re looking for, I think I’ll have Yunyun accompany Dust for the time being, and we can tail them.
I sent a sign towards Yunyun to ‘keep going like this’. With a look of resignation, she walked out of the guild.
“If you didn’t say such things, Chris, we wouldn’t have had to use that girl as a sacrifice. Either way, I think you’re mistaken.”
“My intuition is telling me that his actions are just an act. I’m sure that there’s some reason that he pretends to be an idiot.”
I don’t understand why Chris was so insistent that he was not an ordinary person, but a master instead. Well, I suppose that she was familiar with a spear master herself.
My intuition is tell me that he isn’t pretending, but rather, that he’s just a simple idiot.
Not to mention, he came to my house recently to invite Kazuma to go out with him. Then, together with Aqua who was lazing around, they began talking about ‘how there were a lot of small-chested people in the Eris cult’ and other damning topics like that. Back then, he held a serious expression on his face as he brought up his personal observations.
“This is just my observation, but somehow, I feel that the way he walks is clumsy but awkward. It’s as if he’s throwing away a method that’s deeply ingrained into his body, and forcing himself to use a new method… Also, for some reason, I feel the presence of a strong person coming from over there.”
Chris was a different story, but even Iris – who was an acknowledged authority when it came to battle affairs – began to say such things.
Could it really be that man?
On the other hand, in front of us, Yunyun opened her mouth to speak to Dust, who seemed to have someplace in mind.
“Dust-san, isn’t the way you walk a bit strange today? Could it be that you have something like an injury on your foot…?”
“Oh, you can tell? My well, it’s not really an injury more than it is a bad habit. I heard this from a friend recently when we were at a café, but, uhm, how should I say this? He taught me a method to make ‘that’ bigger after our growth period, so I’m just trying it out. It uses minced ginger and wasabi, but… Hey, don’t look at me with such a contemptful gaze. This isn’t the usual sexual harassment, so stop chanting magic please.”
Saying such disgusting statements towards a girl of tender age, Dust continued:
“To make their chests bigger, girls drink a lot milk and massage their chests and other things like that right? You know, Guys have the dream to be huge. You have dreams too right? Making friends is your dream, and being huge is my dream. Aren’t both of them wonderful dreams?”
––A young girl would earnestly dream to have friends that would be together for a long time, and a boy would dream to be a big man one day.
Shouting that ‘I won’t let you taint my childhood dreams’, Yunyun grabbed onto Dust, and began to fight.
Overseeing the situation—
“The observational skills of the two of you are amazing. So the reason for his clumsy footsteps is as he said.”
Hearing what I said, the two of them who had been commentating with confidence earlier, moved their hands to cover their face.
“Yunyun got angry and went home as well, so is there still any meaning in tailing him? The impression I get from that man is that he’s an amazingly hopeless person.”
After her pure childhood dreams were placed into the same category as that despicable dream, Yunyun went home in tears.
Partly due to Chris’ stubbornness, we continued to tail Dust.
“My intuition is telling me that something has to be up with that person. Despite how it’s been, I have an eye for people you know? Like, I can see through that person’s true nature… Well, I’m not in my normal condition right now, so I can’t say for sure.
I don’t know what she meant by her ‘normal condition’, but if she really had a good eye for people, that means that – despite being a devout Eris cultist – Chris ignored the presence of Vanir and Wiz at the Eris Thanksgiving Festival closing ceremony.
“I’m just a bit curious, Chris, but what do you think of undead and devils?”
“It would be great if they were exterminated.”
She immediately answered.
“Let’s say that it was a human that could only fulfill their wish by becoming an undead, and that they love humanity at heart. Or say, a devil that is unexpectedly not a bad person…”
“It would be great if they were exterminated without exception.”
What an exemplar Eris cultist.
Is this what people call ‘unapproachable’?
<TL Note: The phrase Megumin uses here is 取りつく島もない (tori tsuku shima mo nai), which translates to ‘there’s not even an island to latch onto’. In this instance, it describes Chris as showing a cold attitude, without even leaving a choice to reply.>
I wonder if she thought that Vanir was just a slightly strange person? Well, with this, I finally understood just how blind Chris was to everything.
Then just as Chris returned a puzzled expression towards my questions—
“Ah, please look at that thing you two!”
At Iris’ call, we looked towards where she pointed to. Dust had scattered the crows at the garbage dump, and was looking around to confirm that no one else was present.
“What, is he a serious person like I thought he was? Look there, he’s doing good things without letting people know. He turned his eyes through the area to confirm that no one else is here, and started cleaning up the garbage dump. That’s something that no ordinary person would do right? I suppose he matches up to quite a few of our requirements!”
“I see, he’s going through all the unsorted trash and classifying them properly. I misunderstood that person didn’t I!? About the way he interacts with females, surely there are some circumstances…!”
The two of them were currently forming an even greater misunderstanding. What that thing was doing was fishing through the trash and sorting through what could be sold and what couldn’t be sold.
“See Megumin? My eye for observation isn’t something worthless right?”
I thought that she was just as blind as Aqua.
“Please look! Not only is he sorting through the trash, he’s even making them look pretty. The personality of the former dragon knight from that story was serious, honest, and persevering as well…”
Iris, who was unfamiliar with the matters regarding trash, seemed to be forming some sort of weird misunderstanding, but well, it not like she had or ever will fish through trash.
Keeping the valuables to himself, Dust beautifully cleaned up the garbage dump with a pleased expression plastered on his face. Then, with the items in hand, Dust quickly went to the nearby dealer store.
“Those were the things that were thrown away right? Although those items were placed at a garbage dump, is it a good thing for him to take things that were thrown away and convert that to money?”
Hearing Iris’ question, Chris replied.
“W-, Well, those were things that were thrown away. I suppose that, rather than having those things to remain as garbage, it would be better for the world if it those things were to be used again…”
Ignoring what those two said.
“It seems like they started fighting over the purchase value of those things… Ah, I’m not sure if the store bought it at a cheap price, but he just kicked the trash can flying out of spite. The trash is all over the place!”
The two of them, who had been casted triumphant expressions as they praised Dust, quickly moved to cover their flushed faces.
––Having not learned our lesson, we continued to tail Dust after that.
“Come on Megumin, look! He’s helping a girl that’s been solicited by an unknown adventurer! This time he’s doing a good act…!”
“…It seems that he wants a gift from helping her, and this time he’s the one to solicit her instead.”
Noticing the police nearby, he quickly ran away.
“…Oh, it seems like Dust dropped his wallet.”
“He did. We shouldn’t do anything since we’re tailing him, but if we don’t at least notify him… Hm, someone who was talking behind him picked it up and gave it to him, isn’t that great!?”
“Hm, ah-!? He said ‘my wallet should’ve been placed in a deeper place, you pulled it out!’ and started a fight!”
After starting a fight with the onii-san that went through all the trouble to return his wallet to him, he noticed the police coming by, and ran away again.
“This is the chance! The newbie adventurers are practicing the spear at the open space in town! As a super proficient spear user, he’ll surely have some sort of reaction…!”
“…He didn’t even bat an eye. Rather, he just walked right past them while picking his nose.”
“…That’s a bit of an extreme example. For a while now, I’ve noticed that, despite there being other adventurers swinging in town, the policemen seem to be unwilling to keep their eyes off him.
That feeling was just Dust’s good-for-nothing characteristic at work.
After witnessing the shameful and nasty acts of the town’s infamous ‘number one person to be cautious of’, his final destination was—
“—Then, acting as a decoy to protect the other adventurers from danger, I – with bold resolution – jumped in front of the Kowloon Hydra and got killed. After that, I was sent to where goddess Eris was you see? In reality, the goddess Eris was more divine looking than this you know?”
“Ooh…! I also wish to meet Eris-sama, but I do not believe that such a wish will be fulfilled during my natural lifespan. Purposely going to a dangerous place and treating my life poorly would be against the wishes of Eris-sama. Ah, I’m so jealous that you were able to meet Eris-sama…!”
After prowling around down and causing trouble for the people he met, Dust returned to the adventurer’s guild. There, he solicited an Eris cultist ojii-san that appeared to be a priest, and began to tell his shady tale.
It was true that the souls who faced deaths unrelated to one’s lifespan, such as being killed by a monster, would be sent to goddess Eris.
Thus, it wouldn’t be strange for Dust, who had been killed by the Kowloon Hydra, the have seen goddess Eris once, but…
“And then you see, the goddess Eris told me this. ‘You are not destined to die here. After all, you are fated to help the hero that will defeat the demon king. Now, return to the present world, and give a helping hand to the hero that will save the world. And so I wish for you to bring light upon this world…’ ya know?”
“Oh my, Eris-sama did such a thing! It seems like you carry the great burden of destiny! If there’s anything I can assist you with, please feel free to tell me!”
I was truly suspicious about what he said, but for some reason, when Chris saw the priest’s forthcoming, moved feelings, she began to act fidgety.
Chris, who was a devout Eris cultist, was probably jealous of that man, right?
Dust downed the beer, which I think he was given in exchange for more stories about Eris, in one breath. Then, showing a smile to the kind-looking priest…
“Oh, is that so? Actually, I really want to fight alongside the hero in order to save the world, but I’m totally broke you know…. I thought that there wouldn’t be any devout Eris cultist somewhere who would be willing to be my patron for the sake of the world, but…”
“Hey what do you think you’re saying––––––––!”
Chris grabbed onto Dust.
“Geez, I was just a tiny step away from having it work out, so what did you do that for? And you are that person right? The thief that got sent home crying when Kazuma laid your panties bare the first time you met.”
“I-I-, I didn’t cry! And that was just an accident anyway!”
At a corner of the adventurer’s guild, we bought Dust some food.
Chris, who had suddenly became infuriated, grabbed onto Dust, and said that he had ‘obstructed her business’ as a fictitious excuse to take him away. For some reason, in the aftermath, Chris ended up being the one angrily treating Dust to a meal, but…
“Boss, is it true that Onii-sama stripped Chris-san’s Panties? Taking into account that you said that you had taken a bath with onii-sama before, may I ask what exactly does onii-sama do on a regular basis?”
“That’s just how he normally operates. Not to mention that recently, in the private room of the bathroom of our mansion, he had taken off Darkness’ underwear.”
“Just how could that kind of situation occur!?”
I indoctrinated Iris regarding just how much sexual harassment Kazuma was guilty of. On the other hand, since Chris was buying Dust began to order food without reserve.
“By the way, what were you guys following behind me today for? Could it be that you guys are my fans?”
“There’s no way that a person benevolent enough to be your fan exists… Rather, you noticed our presence? I might not have used the hide skill, but it’s just like I thought isn’t it? You’re not just an ordinary person huh.”
Having still not given up on the notion that Dust was a former dragon knight, Chris asked a leading question in a provoking manner.
“No. It’s not like you guys aren’t eye-catching enough as it is, but if you’re going to go as far as to make a big fuss, then anyone’s gonna notice right?”
“W-, Well, I don’t really care about that. More importantly, you, it’s not a good think to spread false rumors about meeting the goddess Eris kay! You might even receive punishment for that kay!”
To think that the Chris, who usually had a gentle image, was this devout of an Eris cultist.
Dust, who was on the receiving end of Chris’ anger, showed a composed expression.
“Oi oi, how do you know that I was lying? It’s not like you’ve met the goddess Eris before right? Well, of course, since you can’t meet her until you die.”
“That is… I-, I mean, for goddess Eris to do say something that seems like foresight, there’s no…”
Feeling that her situation had taken a turn for worse, Chris awkwardly turned her eyes away.
Then, as if guided by her curiosity, Iris came forth.
“What is Eris-sama like? Does she look like she is in the drawings?”
“Oh, you haven’t seen it haven’t you? Goddess Eris is just as exaggerated as what the Axis cult’s rumors say. Those things were undoubtedly pads… eh, AAhhhHH!?”
Dust, who said things deserving of punishment, turned to face Iris.
“Hey wait, don’t tell people about things such as pads or pads!”
“Shut up, I can tell anyone I want about the goddess’ breast pads! Oi you, , the kid who was with boss Vanir right!? That scary bodyguard isn’t here today is she!?”
“Erm, if you’re talking about Claire, then she isn’t here at the moment.”
Now that I think about it, Iris did say something like that a while ago.
“Hey, please just stop talking about the breast pads! It’s wrong to make a hoax about goddess Eris, you’ll really be punished you know!?”
Seeing Chris slam the table in response, Dust seemed to be amused. Showing a wickedly smug expression, he said.
“Like I said, you don’t have any evidence that I’m lying. You know, goddess Eris seemed to have fell in love with me at first sight you know? There’s no mistaking that gaze.”
“You’re wrong! She was just looking at you for eyes of pity since you died in such an incredibly stupid way!”
“Don’t say disrespectful things just ‘cause you want to see her yourself. Thank me for bravely charging into the Kowloon Hydra instead!”
“Didn’t you just charge back in on your own when you tried to hog all the achievements for yourself!?”
Although neither were willing to retreat from this dispute, it seems there would be a temporary reprieve from this topic as Dust’s orders arrived.
“…And? Well, back on topic. Why were you guys tailing me?”
“Actually, we are making a thieving group in order to achieve a certain goal. Then, we heard of a rumor that there was a handsome, blonde-haired, super-skilled adventurer in this town, and we were thinking about scouting him. After asking the receptionist onee-san, we found out that you were the only blonde-haired adventurer in this town. So them, we wanted to test your true abilities…”
Dust, who stuffed his face with food, told a large gulp from his drink, and in a show of poor manners, he pointed his fork towards us and said.
“A handsome and super-skilled adventurer? Geez, regardless of which one of you guys, all of you are showing such a ‘duh’ expression. You guys are trying to pick up some handsome adventurer and use them to poke at Kazuma after all.”
“Y-, You’re mistaken, we’re not trying to pick up guys alright!? I don’t care about whether or not they’re handsome! There just happened to be this kind of rumor!”
For some reason, Chris replied in a flustered manner. Dust sent a dubious gaze in our direction, and said:
“Uhm, so what kind of guy is that bastard you’re looking for? It doesn’t seem like this thief that got her panties stolen has any clue, but despite how I look, I know all about the adventurers of this town. There are quite a few of them who have dyed their hair you see? So, tell me a bit about that guy’s personality would ya?”
“A super-skilled handsome man, who is serious, compassionate, and has the ability to persevere through hardship. He is a man that all young girls long for.”
“……Does that kind of guy even exist in this world??”
Towards Dust, who seemed to carry quite a bit of doubt.
“If we’re talking about the people nearby, would it be someone like that weird onii-chan called Mitsu… Something like that at least. But can that guy persevere? I touched the butt of the onee-chan that follows him around a little, and he got really mad.”
We have truly, truly mistaken this person for someone else.
Then, Iris, who listened intently, said.
“Uhm, I have something I want to ask you. May I?”
“Huh? What is it small kid? Just to let you know, unlike Kazuma, I’m not a lolicon alright?”
“Please don’t call onii-sama a lolicon! No, that’s not what I wanted to say… Uhm, are you able to use a spear?”
Hearing the word ‘spear’, Dust’s eyebrows rose in surprise. Then, he began to awkwardly scratch his head.
As the words seemed like it would roll off the tip of his tongue, a resounding cry of angst rung through the guild, and interrupted the moment.
The voice belonged to no other than Iris bodyguard, Claire.
“AAhh—! You, aren’t you that weird girl that almost slashed me to bits a while back!”
“AAhh—! You’re the insolent playboy from that time! You, after all that, are you finally planning to lay your sinister fangs on Alice-sama…!”
“You liar! Oi small kid, didn’t you just say that this girl wasn’t here!”
“E-, Even if you say that…”
Terrified of Claire, Dust complained to Iris, and ran away from the guild.
––After seeing Iris off together with Chris, it was rather late, so I decided that it would be best if we called it a day, but…
“In the end, we didn’t find the rumored dragon knight. Well, in exchange, we got Chris to join us, so it’s all good.”
“I suppose that a skilled adventurer like that doesn’t have a reason to stay in the town of beginners anyway. But well, it seems like I misunderstood that person named Dust. And here I thought that I had an eye for people you see.”
Seeing that she hasn’t noticed the presence of Vanir and Wiz that stood out greatly in this town, I suppose it wouldn’t be wrong to say that that eye was simply blind.
“But I wonder why that dragon knight kidnapped the princess? If it was what Alice-chan had told us, then it might be a truly wonderful story. I wonder what exactly happened?”
“Well, everyone has a secret or two to keep to themselves. Even I have things that Kazuma hasn’t seen you see?”
When Crimson Magic clansmen are born, we each have a number engraved on our body at a different place from everyone else.
In my situation… Well, I suppose you could say that it is somewhere that people wouldn’t see…
“Hey Megumin, as a girl, it’s wrong to expose yourself to other people so easily ok?”
“I’m not talking about anything obscene like that! More importantly, you have at least one secret you want to keep right?”
Hearing what I said, Chris showed a small smile.
“In my case, I probably have two secrets that I’m keeping from you, Megumin… Also, I have a secret that I share with Kazuma as well.”
“Oho? Is that a challenge to me? Is that a challenge? Fine, recently, it’s been quite an eyesore to see that man cast lecherous gazes towards his companions anyway. Come at me anytime!”
“W-W-W-, Wait a second, that’s not what I meant!”
Seeing that Cecily was still asleep when I returned to the hideout, I left a message for her to let her know that I had gone home for the day. It seems that Cecily was completely ready to move into there, but I suppose that it’s better to have someone there than to leave it empty.
Today, we gained a brilliant thief.
Yes, we were finally able to get our long-awaited thief.
I can’t help but feel that we did nothing but wander around today, but I suppose that we’ve finally done something that was characteristic of a true thieving group.
How should I say this? Since everyone has their own, unique personality, it was truly burdensome task to get ourselves back on track with what we should be doing.
Now that I had that experience myself, I’ve begun to think that Kazuma might actually be an amazing person.
––Then, returning home whilst reflecting on such things, the visage of a certain man came into view.
The beginner adventurers that began to practice spear at the empty lot in town, continued to swing their spears without paying heed to whether the sky was dark or not.
From a short distance, Dust had started fixatedly at those beginner adventurers.
I wonder what kind of needless dabbling he’ll do this time.
After confirming that there was no police in the area, Dust walked up to the newbie adventurers.
“…Oi, let me borrow your spear for a moment. Let me show you how it’s really done.”
And he had said something completely unexpected.
Perhaps the adventurer that had been called out too didn’t know of Dust’s infamy, but he rubbed the dripping sweat off the spear, and earnestly handed it over to Dust.
As if he were confirming out the length and condition of the spear, he swung the spear around for a while, yet it already seemed like a sudden demonstration.
Even a complete amateur like myself could tell the refinement in his movements
The newbie adventurers stopped their sweaty hands, and probably had their mouths wide open in surprise.
The sound of the spear cutting through the air gradually became sharper and sharper, and the adventurers gulped loudly on their saliva.
As if the surrounding air was being compressed, the atmosphere gradually became tenser and tenser.
Looking at Dust, who swung the spear with fearful amounts of concentration, I began to wonder where the usually hopeless human had disappeared to. Finally he set up his spear posture, and whilst maintaining it, he lowered his waist deeply, and––––
“Welcome back—. Tonight we’re having your favorite sukiyaki Megumin. Aqua’s been pestering me to hurry up this entire time, so go wash your hands quickly.”
<TL Note: Sukiyaki is cooking thin slices of meat (typically beef) on a cast iron pan/plate.>
Saying that, Kazuma brought the gently simmering saucepan over. So he was in charge of food today hm?
Aqua was already seated, and Darkness, who had been waiting for me to everyone to arrive, poured wine into everyone’s glasses.
“Kazuma, could I ask you something real quick?”
“Oh, what’s up all of a sudden? …Haha-n, do you want to hear what time I slept last night?”
Perhaps our promise was a while back was weighing on his mind, but Kazuma sudden said such things, as if he was playing the role of the funny-man.
“No, that’s not what I want to ask. Uhm… do you have a something that you’re keeping private from someone else? I guess you could call it a secret or something like that.”
“A secret? Of course I have a lot of secrets. Rather, is there anyone who doesn’t have a secret?”
…Well, I guess that’s true.
Since I’m still shocked by the sight that I saw earlier, I ended up asking a stupid question.
Was Dust actually that person?
The last technique of his still left a vivid impression in my mind.
Even if I brought one million eris and asked him to teach me that, I might find myself completely overwhelmed.
“What’s with you Megumin? By the way, I’m not keeping anymore secrets. Since I believe in you guys, I’ve told you everything there is to know.”
Seeing that I was troubled, Darkness showed a gentle smile towards me.
“Didn’t you say that a bit too shamelessly? You joined our party whilst keeping your identity as an ojou-sama a secret from us, and you even kept the fact that you were getting married a secret from us, and cause a big mess you know?”
And she was immediately crushed by Kazuma. Tears could be seen forming in her eyes.
Then, Aqua, who was restlessly waiting for the sukiyaki meat to cook, said.
“Oh my, I have a secret as well you know? Yes, I’ve wanted to make this clear to everyone.”
“Oi you, you’re just gonna say that you’re a goddess again right? The two of them aren’t going to believe you, so…”
“Actually, it’s almost been a year since our party was formed. Kazuma bought an expensive bottle of wine to celebrate, but since I failed to endure it any longer, I already drank it!”
Hearing what Aqua said, Kazuma reflexively came to a complete stop.
“What are you ‘sowwee’ about, do you think I’m an idiot! That’s not what you call a secret, but rather something you want to keep hidden! …Oi, your eyes are totally flooded. As of now, I’m not the type of person to get angry, but rather, the type of person who will wait-and-see. You definitely have bigger things that you’re keeping hidden right!? Tell me you little-!”
The fact that I’ve made a thieving group was still a secret I’m keeping from Kazuma.
Ignoring the two who started to squabble—
Darkness tilted her wine glass to one side, and – with her good mood being apparent – she asked me.
“By the way Megumin, you’ve recently doing something with a various group of people right? What did you do today?”
What did we do today?
Well, I suppose I did gain an underling today, but if I had to choose…
“Today, I saw an unexpected side of various people. If the people in question say it’s fine to tell you, then I will you all about it. I’m sure that you’ll be surprised.”
Iris and Yunyun were quite alike, but what exactly did this princess-sama have in mind? I’ll be sure to ask her another time.
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– Megumin’s ‘number’ refers to the mark on her butt-ish area that Kazuma saw a glimpse of on Megumin in the bath scene in Volume 2
– Vanir points out that ‘Dust’ is not his real name in Consulting Chapter 1.
– The way Iris talks about the story is really important, and it directly leads into volume 10. Maybe she wants her Onii-sama to take her away?
– Finally, for reference, the correct reading (release) order is:
Main Volumes 1-4
Explosion Volume 1
Main Volume 5
Explosion Volume 2
Main Volume 6
Explosion Volume 3
Main Volume 7-8
Consulting Volume 1
Main Volume 9
Continued Volume 1, Chapter 1-3
Main Volume 10
Continued Chapter 4 – end