The anime has begun, and the KonoSuba artbook will be coming out on February the 1st! Buy it if you can! (Pictured above is the Gamer’s Limited Edition).
Also, I have a discord server in the works. While there really isn’t anything in it, feel free to join: https://discord.gg/K56U3Cs
Finally, to celebrate the anime and a new year, I have a quiz for you all! It’ll be detailed at the end of the chapter, but includes an early-release reward! <Link Here>
Now, onto the chapter…
Chapter 5: Ending this pointless conspiracy!
Amongst the people of this world, and even on earth where they supposedly didn’t exist, there was not a single person who did not know of the most renowned monster.
So to speak, they were the strongest, greatest, and most fearsome existence.
The one who defeated it would be given the title of a hero, and could receive any reward that they desired. Such was this monster of extremes.
About this creature that was called the king of monsters, right now we—
“Nooooooooooooooooooooo! Nooooooooooooooooooooooo! Noooooooooooooooooooo!”
“Quit being noisy and shut it! Our opponent can actually be called an opponent this time around! So even if it’s someone like you, we still need you around!”
Yes, we were headed to defeat a dragon.
––About that, we need to return back to the time where Iris gallantly announced that she would eradicate a monster.
“You say that you will eradicate the most harmful monster to this nation? The strongest, mightiest monster? Don’t joke around! I know how strong you are, but isn’t it obvious that it’s impossible!?”
Towards the worked-up prince that spat out these words, Iris tilted her head.
“It’s not a problem if I can’t do it, is it? I have decided to go defeat this monster on my own, so it’s not a problem even if I die in the process. I will leave a message before I go so…”
“That’s not what I’m talking about! Even if it’s someone like you, since we’ve held a few conversations before, it would leave a bad taste in my mouth if you die! Don’t go and commit suicide!”
Hearing Iris’ response, the prince shouted, red-faced.
He was an idiot, but in any case, it didn’t seem like he was a bad person at heart.
“Fu, what is there to be afraid of? It might be hard for Iris to face such a powerful monster on her own, but I, Axel’s number one greatest magician, am here as well. Now Iris, let’s go and rout the monster that harms this nation, shall we?”
“You…-! I’m saying this because you guys have no idea what you’re heading into! Listen, in any case, the ones that brings the greatest amount of damage is the monster living in the gold mine. However, that is-…”
The prince, who was about to answer Megumin, was suddenly interrupted by the prime minister.
“Revi-sama, why don’t we let them try? They have stated their desire to do so themselves. Furthermore, if ‘that’ living in the gold mine is eradicated, then we’ll profit from it. Certainly, we must stop the unskilled adventurers and knights from stimulating it, but Iris-sama is a member of the Belzerg clan that inherits the hero’s blood through their veins. In any case, it seems that she will not back down so easily.”
Seeing this situation unfold, the prime minister sneered. Just what did he find so interesting with this situation?
Hearing that, the prince, as if to hide his displeasure—
“…Do whatever you like!”
Said that, and turned his face away—
<Important Note: For the rest of this chapter, keep in mind that a mine is an area spread across a mountain, and that when ‘mine’ is referred to, it’s actually across an open area’>
“—Isn’t trying to subjugate a dragon stupid? Hey, it is stupid, right? Are you all stupid?”
“Shut up and just let it go already. There’s no other way, you see? Also, isn’t it about time we got the achievement of being ‘dragon slayers’ as well? I mean, we’ve already fought against demon king army generals and an evil god, so at this point a dragon isn’t really that much is it?”
To this nation who primarily profited from casinos and businesses, it probably wasn’t necessary for them to take the risk of losing their adventurer’s lives just to reclaim a gold mine that was inhabited by a dragon.
However, for us, who needed this important flow of income, it was an opponent that we had to challenge.
“To be fair, aren’t you raising a dragon as a pet anyway? So what is there to be afraid of at this point? Could it be that you’ll abandon Emperor Zell when it grows up?”
“Please don’t compare my clever child, Emperor Zell, to the likes of the dragon here. That child is very smart, so it won’t attack people you know? And I mean, a wild dragon is basically a retarded lizard right?”
To be called retarded by this girl… I can’t help but feel sorry for the dragon.
If I remember correctly, didn’t dragons have a high intelligence stat?
“Aqua-sama, I will protect everyone, so I will need your help in turn. Since the opponent is a dragon, without your support magic, I think it will be rather tough…”
Said Iris apologetically. It seems that even Aqua couldn’t resist the urging of someone younger than her, but…
“…Geez, I guess it can’t be helped then. I will help you out, so when you grow up and become the queen someday, make the Axis cult the state religion please.”
“Who would allow such a chaotic thing!? Rather, think of it as a blessing if the Axis cult isn’t completely destroyed instead!”
As Aqua and I were noisily fighting, Iris suddenly giggled.
Then realizing our gazes, she hurried shook her hand.
“Ah, don’t misunderstand! I’ve always dreamed of doing adventurer-like things like this, and I was just really happy that we we’re like an adventurer party right now…”
Said Iris embarrassedly. Now that I think about it, when I switched bodies with this girl, she seemed to be happy that she ‘became an adventurer’.
Seeing Iris, Megumin ‘fu fu’-ed to herself and said cockily.
“Geez, we’re not playing around, you know? As a sheltered princess, you can’t be so simple and naïve… Alright, since you are my underling, I will teach you the basics of being an adventurer.”
“Yes, please take care of me!”
Seeing them getting along, Darkness reflexively smiled. Then, Megumin began to explain to Iris.
“…Hmpf, Iris, please look at that. The branches of that tree are broken, right? There’s a high chance that a monster did that not too long ago.”
“No, my ‘Enemy Detect’ skill isn’t picking anything up, so there probably aren’t any around.”
As I told them that, Megumin turned and glanced at me.
Finally recomposing herself, we continued walking through the mine…
“Iris, do you know what is the most important thing for adventurers to have? Yes, it’s water. Amongst all dangers, the situation you’d want to avoid the most is the ‘lack of water’. Thus, there are times where you should try to save the water you’ve brought…”
“Please leave your water problems to us! Kazuma-san and I can use ‘Create Water’, so please drink to your hearts content!”
Aqua interrupted Megumin, who warned Iris to save water, and quickly casted ‘Create Water’.
After filling up Iris’ bottle, she walked away in satisfaction.
As if she wanted to say something, Megumin followed shortly behind Aqua. Finally, she spotted a large tree.
“Iris, there! Look at that, the tree has scars on it! I’ve seen those scars before, it means that there’s a killer-bee nest nearby. Let’s tread lightly so that they don’t come out…”
“Ah, everyone come and touch me. We’ll move forward using my ‘Hide’ skill. If we do that, we probably won’t be discovered by monsters.”
Megumin’s lips began to twitch. She gazed at me with a mixed expression, and came to touch me.
––We advanced in this manner for a few hours.
“Now then, we’re about to confront a strong enemy, so why don’t we take a break for now? Iris, I’ll teach you about what you need to be aware of when resting in the wilderness. First, do not light a fire in the habitat of brutal monsters, so as to not draw their attention…”
“Kazuma-san Kazuma-san, can you Tinder this for me? I want to drink some delicious black tea.”
“You brought a tea set with you? You really can’t be helped huh. Make a cup for me alright? Here, ‘Tinder’.”
I used fire-magic to set alight the fallen branches and leaves that Aqua gathered.
“Waaaahhh—! Hey Megumin what are you doing? Why did you put out the fire!?”
Megumin, who suddenly swung her staff to put out the fire—
“Don’t ‘what are you doing?’ me! If you light a fire in this place, won’t you attract monsters? Ever since I started lecturing her, you two have…!”
Shouted out loud. It was then—
“I’m picking up something from my Enemy Detect. Oi, something’s coming!”
It was a sound that gave me goosebumps.
Furthermore, seeing the birds fly away in fear, I realized that the creature was of some absurd level.
Aqua, who had her fire put out shouted.
“It’s all because Megumin shouted so loudly!”
“It’s my fault!? Yes, I totally caused this situation to happen, didn’t I!? I’m so sorry! I might’ve apologized, but I’m not satisfied with this, ok!?”
Even though we haven’t arrived at the mining area yet—
I wonder if this should be considered good or bad luck.
Its giant body toppled trees and shook the ground. I see, so the title of ‘king of monsters’ it’s not just for show.
Without thinking too much, I shouted.
A gold-colored dragon appeared.
If we were able to slay this creature who had a tendency to gather lustrous objects, then we would gain both incomparable fame and insurmountable wealth.
The reason why it settled down in this gold mine was probably because it was drawn to the gold.
I heard that dragons were bad eaters, but it’s completely possible that its color was a result of eating gold ore.
“Kazuma, we’ve hit the jackpot! This is a golden dragon, and amongst all types of dragon, this has the highest sale price! If you eat its meat you’ll jump levels in one go, you can make rare potions from its blood, and you can even make skill-up potions from ingredients made from its parts. You could probably even make highest-quality weapons and gear from its hard horns and scales. It’s practically a mountain of treasure!”
As everyone was scared by the sudden appearance of the dragon, Darkness alone stepped forth and prepared her greatsword.
“Iris-sama! I will draw the dragon’s attention, so please attack it from a safe position! I’m not good at attacking, so…!”
Shouting that, Darkness activated the aggro-drawing skill ‘Decoy’. Her current gallant appearance made it hard to imagine that she was usually such a piece-of-junk.
This girl, it would be great if she was like this usually.
“Alright Megumin, begin chanting explosion magic! Ideally, I don’t want you to shatter such a precious dragon with your explosion magic, but if Iris has any trouble, don’t hesitate to release it! Aqua, use your magic to support Iris and Darkness! I will attack it from a distance using my bow.”
“U-U-U-U-, Understood…! W-W-, What, it’s just a d-d-d-d-, dragon, before my explosion magic, it’s no d-d-d-, different from a mere lizard…!”
“Hey you skimping NEET, don’t just tickle the dragon with your bow and arrow and try to be useful!”
The dragon looked at Darkness with bloodthirsty eyes, and closed the distance at a speed uncharacteristic of its large size.
As Megumin, who was weak to adversity, shook uncontrollably, Aqua, despite her complaints, casted her defense-increasing magic to support everyone..
I wanted to help somehow, but there was nothing I could do against a dragon.
There was no way my attacks could penetrate its hard scales. To start with, I’ll immediately die if I just get a tad too close.
“Come, golden dragon! I’ll let you witness the power of Dustiness who are called ‘the clan of shields’!”
Without taking a single step back from the giant, incoming dragon, Darkness, whose body shone with support magic, stood her ground firmly.
As I watched this fairy-tale like scene unfold, I noticed that Iris, who had received Aqua’s attack-up magic, was waiting with extreme patience.
As I turned to look—
Iris stood there holding her holy sword, her eyes closed, and without making a single movement.
Then, light that was akin to static electricity rose and shined around her body, accompanied by intense ripping noises. With my vast knowledge of anime and manga, I immediately came to a conclusion.
Something terrific was coming.
And what Iris was about to use was probably the strongest of those terrific things.
I’m familiar with this—
In the penultimate battle, this was something akin to the final strike that one poured their very body and soul into.
Perhaps it was wary of Darkness. The golden dragon released a mighty cry, but did not move to attack.
This dragon was certainly smart, but just this one time, it made a poor decision.
Iris, who had continued to concentrate, opened her eyes.
The magic power that floated in the atmosphere gathered into her sword, and the sword began to release ever-brightening light.
All I could see was the dragon’s surprised and frightened appearance after it had noticed Iris.
“Sacred · Explode’—!!”
Accompanied by Iris’ shout that devoted her body and soul, the gold mine was enveloped in a blinding light—!
—The town of Elroad erupted into a state of excitement.
“The dragon has been subjugated! The golden dragon in the gold mines has been slain by Belzerg’s princess!”
Returning to Elroad, we went straight to the adventurer’s guild and reported the dragon’s death.
Dragons were the embodiment of magic power.
Its horns, scales, teeth, and even drops of its blood were all ingredients of the highest grade.
We came to the guild to request that the employees retrieve its corpse, but it had caused a great commotion.
The corpse of a dragon was probably worth a fortune.
However, the amount of money we desired was not so small that it could be earned by working individually like this.
Whilst being applauded as dragon slayers, we headed towards the castle.
“I already heard about it! I never thought that you would be able to defeat the golden dragon…!”
The gatekeeper, who had once treated Iris adversely, greeted us with the utmost respect, to the point where his eyes seemed to shine as a result.
It was quite a 180° turn in attitude, but I don’t dislike it.
“Uhm, could you please tell me, just a little bit, about how you fought…”
Hearing the guard’s timid inquiry, I responded triumphantly.
“It ended with a single strike, alright?”
Although it was Iris’ handiwork.
“One strike!? O-, One strike…!”
We walked past the astonished guard, and headed towards the audience room.
—Receiving Iris’ special move head on, the dragon had been cleanly cut in half.
The area had been surrounded by light, and although I didn’t know what type of skill she had used, by the time I regained my senses, the golden dragon was already dead.
“Iris, don’t think that you’ve already won alright!? ‘Cause there’s no doubt that my explosion magic would’ve also defeated that dragon! I just didn’t want to blast this precious dragon to smithereens, so I purposely, pur-pose-ly, let you take the credit for this alright!?”
Regardless of when her thunder was stolen, or when she witnessed Iris’ incredible might, Megumin was just as irritating.
“I understand. I understand Megumin-san. So please let me go already.”
“No I won’t! Whatever that ‘Sacred · Explode’ thing was, I can’t forgive you for giving that skill a name that makes it sound like a high-level version of explosion magic. Don’t you dare use it again!”
It seems that Megumin was irritated by the ‘Explode’ part of the skill’s name.
“Despite the skill’s name being ‘Sacred · Explode’, it has nothing to do with ‘Explosion’…”
“How could you possibly say that it’s unrelated!? The name is practically ripped off from explosion magic! Not to mention, the reason behind its massive power is probably because it shares a similar name with ‘Explosion’!”
“Megumin-san, you’re really annoying! Don’t call the special move that’s been passed down through my clan a ‘rip off’ please! To start with, the special move originates from the swords’ name…!”
I ignored the two of them, and walked into the audience room. Sitting there was the prince, who seemed to be a tad different from usual—
“Did you really do it!?”
The prince, who had heard the details about our battle with the dragon, was flushed red in his excitement. He was so excited that he practically spit as he spoke.
“Yes, here is the dragon’s horn that serves as evidence. Please take a look.”
Iris revealed the dragon horn that she carried on her back. The prince’s entourage, who were seated in the row, were all roused up.
They had held us in contempt and had looked down on us as country-bumpkins. However, perhaps due to the troubles the dragon had caused, or perhaps due to the great fame of a ‘dragon slayer’, they all looked at Iris with goodwill.
How’s that? She’s amazing right?
This girl is my little sister you know?
“A horn that shines with golden light… There’s no doubt that this is the horn of the golden dragon that lives in the mines…”
Hearing the astounded murmurs of the prince, the audience room seemed to heat up.
It was then—
The one who threw a bucket of ice cold water on the excited, heated atmosphere was the prime minister. He looked towards us coldly.
Oi, you’re not planning to give us more trouble, right?
“As expected of the princess who carries the hero’s blood. I can’t blame the demon king army for being afraid of your clan, I suppose… Oi!”
The prime minister gave a signal, and one of the soldiers came carrying a large leather bag.
…Huh? Weren’t we promised increase funding?
Since we’ve defeated so many demon king generals, I was able to guess how much money was in there based on the size of the bag.
Although this was appropriate for a reward for defeating a high-bounty monster, it was far and away from the money needed to fund a nation.
Iris seemed to have the same thoughts. She timidly received the bag, and showed a perplexed expression.
“This is the rewards for the dragon-slaying request. This is an amount that is a fair bit more than the amount we would give to an adventurer. Please take it.”
“N-, No way…!”
Hearing the prime minister’s announcements, everyone in the room began to murmur amongst themselves.
Although we were on the ‘away’ side, the contents of their murmurs seemed to be sympathize with us.
“W-, Wait Ragcraft! I think that this is too harsh, but… N-, No, I understand. If we give them the increased funding then a variety of problems will occur. I completely understand that, but to give the dragon-slaying hero such a reward is…”
I thought that the prince hated Iris, but the one to speak up at this moment was him.
From a moment ago, he had begun looking at Iris, who he had previously hated, as though he was looking at a hero.
The prince was also a boy.
A ‘dragon slayer’ was probably someone that they admired and worshipped.
“Prince, I’ve already explained to you countless times. Originally, it would have been best for us to cut the defense funding entirely, but turning a blind eye to that, granting the attacking funds is something that cannot be done, for the sake of the nation…. Iris-sama, I understand your situation, however, we also have our unavoidable circumstance. I hope that you understand.”
Hearing what the minister said, the prince lowered his head.
At first I thought he was just harassing Iris, but was I wrong?
The prince, who continued to lower his head in shame, peeked a glance toward us— No, towards Iris.
“Uhm… I’m sorry. We also have various troubles, so we cannot give you the money. That’s all there is, please forgive me.”
The prince, who had been nothing but haughty and arrogant until now, was now lowering his head to apologize.
Seeing that, don’t talk about me, even Iris and Darkness weren’t able to say anything more.
As I expected, Iris’ high spirits completely disappeared.
She unconsciously grabbed onto my clothes, and stood there with a blank expression. The shock must’ve been too much for her.
Seeing that, the prince must’ve felt extremely guilty.
“Uhm, how should I say this… right. Would you like to go to the casino? Given how serious you are, you probably haven’t been to the casinos that are the pride of my nation, right? At the very least, go there and relax yourselves!”
That, well, wasn’t very encouraging—
“Uhm, prince, do you have a moment?”
“Hm, what is it? Right now, your little sister is more…”
I knew that now wasn’t the right time, but I still opened my mouth to speak.
“I want to talk about the casinos. If we’re going to play, then I want to play around to the fullest before going home. Could you give me a pass to the biggest casino with the highest stakes?”
“…You… Are you serious? Your little sister is depressed right now, you know? Actually no, I was the one who told you guys to go to the casinos to relax, so do as you like. However, let me remind that the petty tricks that you used against me won’t work there alright? The casinos in this nation aren’t that naïve. Anyway, since this nation was established on casinos, I wouldn’t stop you, but—“
Before the prince could finish.
I courteously lowered my head to hide the smile that was appearing on my face.
—On our way home from the castle.
“…I’m so useless. I thought that if I worked hard, it would work out…. Onii-sama and everyone here helped out, and I promised everyone back at home that I would…”
Iris, who trudged along behind us, murmured depressedly.
As if to comfort her, Darkness opened her mouth to say something. Then—
“Kazuma, Kazuma. At times like this, should you do something as her onii-chan? That girl might be my underling, but I don’t like it when she’s depressed.”
What do these people take me for?
I really wish that these people would stop relying on me whenever they had some problem.
As for Aqua, who didn’t seem to have fully understood what happened, she walked happily in front, moving in twists and turns, whilst humming to herself.
I turned back to face Iris, who walked alone behind us.
Iris huddled her body in surprise.
Perhaps she thought that I was angry at her for screwing up. She clenched her fists tightly, and lowered her head further. To her—
“You worked hard, Iris. Mm, you’re a dragon slayer after all. Not to mention, you’ve become a hero as well. You’ve worked harder than anyone, and no one can blame you for this result.”
Hearing that, Darkness nodded her head several times.
“That’s right Iris-sama! It’s as Kazuma says, you’ve worked hard! When we return to the castle, let me, Lalatina, tell the story of how Iris hard strug…!”
“That’s why, Iris—”
I interrupted Darkness who tried to cheer Iris up.
I put my hand on Iris’ head—
“Leave the rest to onii-chan”
And showed her a smile.
“Hey Megumin, those are the ‘headpat’ and ‘dumb smile’ techniques you know? To be specific that man is using the legendary skill where, by patting the head of a girl, and showing her a smile, he can make her fall in love with him.”
It’s true that I aimed to do that just a teensy bit, but at times like this, can you please read the mood a little?
‘Leave the rest to onii-chan’
After saying that to Iris, I continued.
‘I have a good idea’.
“You little… After you said something cool like that, I was expecting something good, but in the end, it’s this again!?”
The answer was very simple.
Yes, it was the casino.
Using the luck that I was born with, I was going to earn money by gambling.
My answer couldn’t even be called a plan, and either way, there was no guarantee that it would work. Darkness was extremely angry about it, but there was no other move I could make, so it can’t be helped.
“Even if you say that, I think that this has a considerable chance of success.”
“What part of it even suggests that! Gambling money to earn money, especially when we need it the most, is obviously wrong, right!? I’m sorry Iris-sama, I was a fool to have trusted this man…”
Iris shook her head at Darkness, who had spouted some disrespectful things about me.
“No, Lalatina, I think that this is a good idea.”
Hearing the unexpected reply, Darkness fell into disarray.
“Iris-sama, please think it through again. You staked your life in order to obtain the dragon’s bounty and the price for its parts. Although it’s still far and away from the additional funds we desired from Elroad, compared to our former, desperate situation, this is…!”
Darkness emphasized Iris’ achievements, and tried to get her to reconsider.
However, Iris gently took Darkness’ hands into her own, and said.
“Lalatina, the archpriest of the Axis cult, Aqua-sama, once said that: ‘Since it’s pointless anyway, go ahead and try it. If you failed, then just run away.’”
“Iris-sama, those beliefs are wrong! You can’t allow yourself to be polluted by the Axis cult!”
“Iris, don’t become a hard-headed girl like her, alright? This is a casino. Casinos are places where you go to have fun.”
“You imbecile, what do mean by hard-headed girl!”
Ignoring Darkness, who began to make a fuss, I took the support funds that Iris carried, and handed it over to the casino’s manager in exchange for a large amount of chips.
First, I need to silence this noisy girl.
It should be fine, I’m friends with the real goddess of fortune after all.
Sitting at the roulette table, I scooped out about one-third of the chips.
Darkness and the audience’s expressions stiffened. On the other hand, Iris silently observed the situation with a serious expression.
The face of my boss, who – unexpectedly – liked to have contests, appeared in my mind. Even now, she might be looking after me.
In order to give my little sister some peace of mind—
“Iris, I’ll tell you this once more. You’re meant to have fun during contests. Also, at times like this, this is what you say. This is the favorite phrase of my friend, who has better luck than me—”
I put all the chips in my hands on red.
Praying just a teensy bit to the mischief-loving goddess to borrow her strength, I raised my voice so that even the heavens might hear.
“Let’s do it!”
––A thick, human wall formed as all the customers in the casino were gathered around the roulette table.
“Ahahahahaha! We won! We’ve won again! Because Kazuma-san has terrific luck! As long as we’re in a casino, I will follow you for the rest of my life!”
“Oi, don’t put your chips in the same place. What will you do if my good fortune runs away?”
It was a crushing victory.
Although the croupier was on the absolute verge of tears, there was no reason for me to stop here.
I said to Darkness, who had quickly become meek and obedient—
“Oi, bring me some more coffee.”
“Y-, Yes, immediately!”
Since a while ago, she had diligently brought me coffee, which I drank to energize myself.
When I had won the first bet, she had breathed a sigh of a relief.
By the second, she breathed lightly and showed a wry smile.
“I’ve brought it! No, your order has arrived! Please enjoy it!”
By the third, she released a small gasp.
By the fourth and fifth, she started getting fidgety.
“Uhm, esteemed customer…”
By the seventh, eighth, the roulette’s croupier looked at me with awe and reverence.
“Hm? What’s up? You can’t tell me that ‘you can’t gamble anymore’ alright? After all, when a customer starts losing enormously, it’s not like you’d tell them to stop gambling, right?”
I reached into my basket, and took out a chip of enormous value.
“Well, I guess it’s about time we raised the stakes. If I remember correctly, if you get both the color and the number right, the return ratio increases massively right?”
“Esteemed customer! P-P-, Please don’t gamble anym….!
The manager, who had been observing the table from a distance, dashed towards me with a pale face.
If this was a private business, then I would feel slightly ashamed, but this was a state-run casino.
No matter how much I forcibly take from them, the only ones who would cry about it in the end were the prince and the prime minister, so there were no problems.
I ostentatiously sipped on the coffee that Darkness passed to me, and took out the two pendants that hung around my neck.
“Oi, do you know what this is?”
“…? …T-, That is-!? The insignia of the two great nobles families of the neighboring nation, house Dustiness and house Shinfornea!?”
The manager’s face grew even paler.
“Yes, I’m being backed by these great noble-samas. Do you know what that means? If you don’t allow me to gamble any more, then there’ll be some foreign affairs problems, you know?”
Fu, it’s my win, isn’t it?
“Amazing, onii-sama! I heard that your luck is great, but I never would’ve thought that it would be to this extent! If your luck is this good, rather than being an adventurer, wouldn’t it be fine to amass a fortune from casinos?”
Iris, who had been excited, grasped my hands and said that.
To live by gambling at casinos.
It’s not like I haven’t thought about that, but if someone like myself, who’s merely a weak adventurer that gets caught up in incidents easily, wins big at a casino, then my life will surely be targeted.
Also, this would only be successful if I did it occasionally.
If I followed my desires forever, then I probably wouldn’t end up anywhere decent.
The reason I could do this was because I had the backing of two great nobles and a princess, as well as the fact that I was earning money for the just cause of fighting the demon king army.
If not for that, I believe that Eris-sama would’ve already intervened.
“No, I don’t want to be a gambler. In order to defeat the demon king, I’d much rather be an adventurer instead.”
As I said such cool lines, Iris looked at me with eyes of respect.
I put the basket full of chips on top of black-6. All the curious spectators began to make a commotion.
“Now, let’s do this!”
The croupier, who was pressed by my sheer presence, took a ball with his sweaty palms…!
“I’ll put it here as well ok!?”
Before I could stop her, Aqua put her chips in the same spot.
At the same time, the ball was propelled, and the turned around the roulette.
“You little-! I told you not to put anything! This isn’t a game ok!?”
“Why can’t I gamble as well you stingy shut-in NEET! I’ve had nothing but losses recently, so let me earn a little back…”
As I scolded Aqua, the ball began to slow…
“WAAAH—! My little savings, it’s all gone—!”
I called for Darkness, and instructed her to take Aqua away.
“Hey Darkness, I beg you! If I don’t earn a lot of money here then I won’t be able to buy a gift for Emperor Zell! I’ll pay you back when I win, so let me borrow some!”
“I’ll buy the gift, so come over here! The future of my nation is at stake you know!?”
As I saw Aqua, who was being dragged by Darkness off, I recomposed myself.
Now that the goddess of pestilence is gone, things should return to normal.
“Kazuma Kazuma, to win back what we lost, let’s go all out! Go and bet all the chips!”
“Not gonna. Unlike you guys, I’m a prudent person. Ah, what are you trying to do with my chips! Darkness, take this girl away!”
As Megumin and Aqua were dragged away by Darkness, I placed a bet on black-8.
“Let’s do this!”
“Kazuma-san, Kazuma-san. You were really cool today. You know, I have meant to tell you that for a long time…”
“No matter how much you praise my I’m not gonna give you an allowance alright? ‘Cause If I give you money then you’ll just mess up my bet… Oh, they’re here they’re here.”
As we were walking home after our crushing win—
Well, I can’t say I didn’t expect this.
“Hey you, do you have a moment?”
Two masked men blocked the way in front of me.
Seeing that, Iris looked at me with eyes of respect.
“Amazing, onii-sama! To think that you predicted this—!”
“Right? It’s just as I said. ‘We’ll definitely get ambushed.’ These people are hired by the casino, you know?”
In response to what I said, the men hurriedly shook their heads.
“Y-, You’re wrong! We’re muggers that came after hearing that you won big! Be obedient and leave the money here, otherwise you’re in for a world of pain. Don’t worry, your life is s…”
Ignoring what they said, I took out the wire that was used for ‘Bind’.
“Alright you guys, capture these guys and use the lie-detecting chi-ring chi-ring magic tool to collect some evidence! I mean, if they’re backed by the casino, then we can blow this event out of proportion and forcibly ‘request’ the funding!”
Hearing what I said, not only the men before us, but even my companions were stunned.
“K-, Kazuma, you…. Is that why you said we should go through the dark alleyway on our way home? Ah, that’s why you told Aqua to cast support magic, and go to the casino fully equipped…”
Hearing Darkness’ murmur, the men retreated several steps, and whispered to one another.
“Oi, isn’t this looking bad for us? I can’t help but feel that we’ve been tricked, but…”
“More importantly, isn’t that person over there a crimson magic clansman? To add onto that, there are two blonde-haired blue-eyed people. That means that…”
“Oi, there were nobles! All the nobles are super strong, you know!?”
Oho, I can’t allow that.
“They look like they’re gonna run. Those guys are mountains of treasure, don’t let them get away! You don’t need to hold back, alright? If something happens, we have Aqua for ‘Resurrection’ alright!?”
As I shouted towards the men…
“Run! These guys are trouble, they even said that ‘we have Resurrection’! These guys are for real, they’re really gonna do it!”
“We can’t let them catch us! RUN! RUN!”
“Wait, don’t leave me behind!”
As I thought, they were hired by the casino.
They hurriedly ran away without leaving a single moment for doubt.
“…Hey Kazuma, to say ‘Resurrection’ and things like that, isn’t that a bit too much? Just saying.”
“Nope, I figured that if I said that they would get scared. I mean, there’s no way I have the guts for… Hey what is it, don’t look at me like that. For real, please stop!”
I, who was left behind, desperately tried to explain myself.
After that, we continued to go to the casino every day.
The manager’s face would pale whenever he saw me.
—At first, he probably never thought that I would continue to win in such a tremendous manner.
Every time I went to the casino, the manager would look at me from afar with an abhorrent expression.
However, after seeing me earn more day by day, it seems that he finally realized that he couldn’t allow this farce to continue.
“Esteemed customer? Uhm, due to your immense ability, our business may be forced to close in the near future. We will give you a reward, so please…”
“This is a state-run casino isn’t it? There’s no way it’d go out of business. It’s fine even if you’re going red in the bankbook, you know? To start with, the prince of this country himself had told me to ‘go to a casino and relax’. Here look, this is the VIP card that I got from the prince.”
“T-, The prince!? N-, No way, how could it be…”
Ignoring the astonished manager, I, again, gambled to my heart’s content today.
—A couple days had passed since then.
Given how the gambling money was snowballing, the additional funding was no longer just a pipe dream.
“E-E-E-, Esteemed customer. Uhm, actually, the casino is planning to temporarily stop operating starting tomorrow. And well, you see, because you are a regular customer of ours, I felt the need to inform you…”
“Oh, is that so? Well, until we reach our desired goal, we’ll continue to live here for however many years it takes. However, if the casino stays closed for such a long time, will the country’s revenue books be alright?”
“However many years…”
To get me to stop, he even told me that the business would be suspended.
“—Esteemed customer, I beg you! Please! Please no more! I’m being scolded by my superiors every single day, so please forgive me!”
“I’m telling you, it’s fi~ne, it’s fi~ne. The prince said it’s fine after all. If you got any complaints, bring it to the prince, alright?”
As the manager was about to cry—
As we were about to – again – enter the casino today, we were stopped by an emissary from the castle.
—After being led to the castle by the emissary, we were immediately brought to the audience room.
“I’m begging you, just go home already.”
Once we saw him, he immediately lowered his head and said such a thing.
Despite it being a short time since we last met, he seemed extremely haggard and worn out.
“Oi oi, you said to Iris that she should ‘go to the casinos and relax’, right? All we’re doing is relaxing, alright. Once we’re done relaxing we’ll go home.”
“Wait, if you keep winning like this, then I can’t take this as a joke anymore! With the way it’s going, my nation will have practically given you the additional funding!”
Even if you say that—
“You call yourselves ‘the great nation of casinos’, but you’re going to drive the customers that have won big home? What is that supposed to mean, hm? All we’ve done is play around in one of your casinos, so is there a problem?”
“Gu… That is… my nation also has particular circumstances…”
So it’s what he said before, huh?
But of course, I don’t think that has anything to do with us.
“Uhm, what do you mean by ‘particular circumstances’? Why are you unwilling to tell us?”
Iris walked up to the prince and asked him.
The prince lost his composure for a mere moment, and his expression quickly turned apologetic.
“No, this is just…”
However, the prince was interrupted.
“My nation intends to make a deal with the demon king army.”
The prime minister, who suddenly stated the unthinkable, showed a completely calm expression.
The people in the audience room seemed to have also known this, as none of them seemed to be fazed.
The prince hurriedly raised his hand to stop the prime minister, however, he continued.
“My nation is currently involved in peace negotiations with the demon king army. Should the demon king army defeat your nation, they have promised to leave my nation alone, on the condition that we cut our support for Belzerg.”
Darkness bore her fangs against the prime minister, who had said that indifferently.
“You bastard, you believe in the words of the demon king army!? Do you have no shame as a human being!?”
To Darkness, who was furious like never before—
“However, the truth is that Belzerg is unable to overcome the demon king army. As of now, the demon king army and your nation are currently in a stalemate, and the state of the battle is at which no one knows who would win. Thus, pledging our neutrality, and removing ourselves from the state of affairs would not be a bad choice to make as a country’s leader, is it not?”
The prime minister furrowed his brows as he said that, without a single trace of sincerity.
Well, it’s not like I wanted to be related to stuff about the demon king either, so it’s not like I didn’t understand how he felt.
However, right now, I’m here as Iris’ brother.
As I was racking my brain for a method to bring this all to an end, Darkness raised her voice.
“To think that you would trust the demon king…! Listen closely. The demon king is a terrible existence that kidnaps females – even children – and ‘plays’ with them for his own amusement! A terrible existence that kidnaps princesses and female knights, and sexually assaults them with limitless, inexhaustible, and unspeakable methods, such is the demon king!”
“D-, Don’t say such disrespectful things! No, I mean, where did you hear such rumors? Actually, I am in charge of the negotiations. From my conversations, I feel that the demon king-sama is a rather open-hearted, and trustworthy member of the demon race…”
Saying strange things such as ‘trustworthy member of the demon race’, the prime minister intently defended the demon king.
“Even if you say that, this saying is actually quite famous… On top off that, I’ve heard that ‘the demon king is a lolicon’, ‘the demon king is the number one pervert on the continent that likes abnormal play’, ‘the demon king is a homo’, and other rumors like that…”
“Who the heck is spreading such baseless rumors!?”
Towards prime minister, who was infuriated for some reason, Aqua showed a triumphant expression, and announced.
“These are rumors that are spread by us, the Axis cult! My children use their own ways to spread my image of the demon king, you see?”
“Hey, the reason the demon king attacks humanity really isn’t because of you guys, right?”
Hearing about the handiwork of the Axis cult, the prime minister pressed his hands against his head.
For someone he trusted to be talked about in such a way, he must be losing it.
It’s not like I couldn’t understand why he would try to cover the demon king, who was his negotiation partner, but…
It was then—
“Uhm, prince Revi? I have a good grasp on the situation. The demon king said that, ‘After Belzerg is defeated, I will attack Elroad next. If you don’t want to that to happen, then work together with me’, or something like that, yes? That said, if the prince has thought this through, and has come to this decision for the sake of survival, then I will not object.”
The princess-sama, who continued to be timid, unselfish, strong, and kind, decided to use such a harmless method and—
“Please rest assured. So that the relationship of our nations does not crumble, I will smooth things out with my father… I have faith in my ability to judge people, you know? During our first meeting, I somehow understood that the prince does not truly hate me. You were merely conceited. That’s the feeling I have.”
And then she said to the prince, who kept his head lowered—
“Belzerg’s royalty is strong. Even without the funding, we wouldn’t lose to the demon king army. That’s why…”
As though she was comforting a hurt child, she said in a gentle voice.
“So please don’t show such a pained expression.”
Saying that, she showed an innocent smile.
“…It seems that I am called an idiot prince by the world.”
Said the prince who sat on the throne of the audience room.
Then, he suddenly rose his head, and said.
“It seems that people say that I don’t care about politics, and that I spend all my time doing nothing but gambling.”
Towards Iris, who seemed a bit absent-minded at the turn of events, the prince finally showed a smile befitting of his age.
“Would you like to have one more contest with me? No tricks this time alright? If you are able to win against me… Then I will bet that Belzerg will beat the demon king!”
As prime minister released a pained cry, the prince took out a coin, and flaunted it to me. Then, he hid his hands behind his back.
Then, he stretched his two, clenched fists forward.
“—Now, which hand is the coin in?”
At a time too early to sleep, but too late to do something—
As for the contest we had after that, there’s no need for me to say anything more, right?
The prime minister made a fuss, but the prince’s followers all held unexpectedly satisfied expressions.
In some sense, they were probably happy that their master was able to make a decision of his own accord.
Perhaps from now on, no one will call him an idiot prince.
—In the end, the defense funding for the war against the demon king army was restored.
Furthermore, a large amount of funds that would be used to support the offense efforts was obtained.
On top of that, Iris gained the title of ‘dragon slayer’, so it wouldn’t be wrong to say that this was the best possible result.
…However, I was bothered by one thing.
That prince, unexpectedly, seems to have gained interest in Iris.
The reason he had showed that attitude during our first meeting was in order to keep the distance between Iris’ nation and his. Now that the funding problem was resolved, he once again held a reception, this time however, it was a plentiful banquet. Not to mention, during the banquet, they seemed to be getting along just fine.
Yes, unlike the first time around, their relationship improved for the better.
This was beyond my initial calculations.
To start with, the reason I followed along was so that Iris wouldn’t be handed over to shady man.
Luckily, the prince himself had intentionally avoided her, so I had been relieved. However, at this moment, I couldn’t help but remember my duty,
“What should I do? Should use steal on that little brat to reveal his lower half in front of Iris? …No, letting Iris see something strange is bad for her growth, however, my opponent might be that kid, but he’s still a prince. I can’t use any rough methods either…”
We had taken up the prime minister’s offer for us to stay at the castle for today, and right now, I was rolling around the bed while thinking to myself.
As I ‘hm’-ed out loud—
Someone lightly knocked on the door and spoke.
“Kazuma, are you here? I have something I want to talk to you about, is now fine?”
I could hear Megumin’s voice from outside.
Since I wasn’t planning on sleeping yet, I left the door unlocked.
I said in the direction of the door.
“Excuse me for coming here at this time…”
Megumin murmured whilst entering the room. Her face was slightly red.
What was she up to?
Something like thanking me for what happened with Iris?
Yes, now that I think about it, this girl seemed to be secretly doing something with Iris.
Well, now that I have the chance, why don’t I ask her?
…As I was thinking that—
“Uhm, can I sit beside you?”
Without waiting for my reply, she sat down beside me.
What’s up with her today? She sure was close with me today.
…Then, something flashed in my head.
Yes, I remembered what happened a while back.
What did I say to Megumin before?
If I remember correctly, this is what I said.
‘…Well then, if you can finally let go of your guilt towards that onee-san, and if you wanted to do that kind of thing again, I have no reason to refuse—!’
And Megumin replied like this.
‘Is that so? If that day really comes, then I’ll come to your room to play again.’
My heart skipped a beat, but I tried my best to look calm.
“G-, Go ahead. What’s come over you today? You can’t fall asleep so you’ve come to play a game with me? If that’s the case, Iris is closer to your level, so go and—”
Interrupting what I said, Megumin leaned her face closer.
Perhaps she was excited, as her eyes shone crimson red. I felt a serious atmosphere that didn’t allow for any joking around.
I reflexively gulped.
“I want you to sleep with me tonight. Uhm, is… that… fine…?”
She said that in a soft voice as she grabbed my hand tightly and turned her head away embarrassedly.
Somehow, this day has finally arrived.
Without further ado, the day of victory is upon me.
However, calm down. First, lock the door to prevent anyone from coming in.
Then, stay calm, and don’t be greedy. As an elder man, I must take the lead.
I firmly grasped Megumin’s shoulders and then let go. Gesturing to lock the door…
“Uhm, Kazuma? I’m, uhm, not as big a Darkness, so as expected, it’s no good…. is it?”
“Nothing like that. I am a man that loves it equally, regardless of whether it’s small or large. Please don’t misjudge me as such a petty man.”
In response to my rebuttal, Megumin drew herself a teensy bit away.
“I-I-, Is that so. Then… Uhm, It’s embarrassing, so could you close your eyes for a moment?”
“I-, I feel troubled about your refusal, but… The room is bright you see? So please, for just a little…”
Megumin lost her composure at my immediate response.
It can’t be helped then, I should be obedient and close my eyes.
But at the very least, I should lock the door first.
If I don’t, then some person who can’t read the mood will come barging in…
The moment I worriedly, but anticipatedly, closed my eyes—
—I lost consciousness.
“…No Dark… I’m… You’re…”
I heard a man and girl talking.
Hearing that, using my blurry mind, I started to think about what exactly happened.
When I came to, I noticed that my mouth had been gagged.
It wasn’t just that, my hands were tied, and my body was covered in ropes, making it so that I couldn’t move at all.
No matter how much I struggled, I couldn’t break free. Using my ‘Night Vision’ skill, I found that I was locked in some sort of closet.
…NOT THIS AGAINNNNNNNNNN!
As I was agonizing in the closet, I heard the voices again.
“B-B-, But Kazuma, there’s too big of a difference in our social statuses, so it’s not that simple… No, of course I don’t hate you, but—! But, it’s still too early for this, or something like that…”
That was Darkness’ voice.
What the heck was this girl saying? As I was thinking about that—
From the other side of the closet, came another voice that caused me to reflexively flinch.
“What do you mean by our differences in status? I swear that, even if I have to throw away my status, I will love you alone, Darkness. That’s why please, with me…!
That was my voice.
“Throw away your status? What are you saying? You’re just a commoner.”
The blank, stupefied voice responded to Darkness’ question was undoubtedly mine.
“Rather, you’ve been acting rather strange. To give a specific example, the fact that you’re completely calm when you’re alone in a room with me is tormenting.”
That girl…! I want to burst out of here and slap her.
There’s a limit to your self-confidence! I won’t stay incompetent and weak forev…
…Mm, I should have some composure right now, but…
“N-, No, of course I’m nervous when I’m alone with you. More importantly, my gaze…”
I heard my voice once again.
But before ‘I’ could finish, Darkness—
“…Oi, for a while now, you haven’t been looking at my chest at all. What’s that supposed to mean? Your gaze is so sincere, even in this situation…. You bastard, you’re not the real Kazuma, are you!?”
What should I do with her after this?
Although I wasn’t sure what was happening, it seems that outside the closet, some imposter was imitating my voice.
Should I be happy that she saw through the imposter, or should I be angry about the cruel things she said about me?
“If it’s like this, then you leave me no other choice. I’ll do whatever I can to suppress you-! This is that man’s room, and you’ve noticed that he’s not here, right? If you resist, then who knows what’ll happen to him…!?”
Crap, the situation is taking a turn for worse.
If he says that, then that prideful girl that cares for her friends, will…
“Wha…! You bastard, you dare take a hostage, you coward!? W-, What do you plan on doing to me with the rope and handcuffs!? Are you going to tie me up!? Are you planning to handcuff me, tie me up, and do unspeakable things to me!?”
“No, I don’t plan on doing unspeakable things to you, I just need to keep you restrained… W-, What, you’re unexpectedly honest, aren’t you?”
“Kuh, it’s fine if you do this to me, but don’t you dare lay a hand on my friends! Ah, the handcuffs are cold…! Oi you, could you use that voice and say ‘Hehe, what an excellent sight to behold, Darkness! You already know what’s gonna happen from here, right?’ with a slightly savage tone to it?”
Yes, for the depraved pervert that absolutely loved this situation, this was merely nature taking its course.
“You… N-, No, ok. Hey, I’m trying to tie you up, so stop squirming. Oi, I’m not gonna do anything strange to you, so stop blushing!”
“I mean, you’re doing this with that face of yours, so…! Oi, what are you planning to do with me? Could it be that you’re planning on locking me into this closet, and…!”
As I heard something approached, the closet was opened before my eyes.
Darkness and my eyes met for a short moment.
“…Were you looking at this shameful sight this entire time?”
I nodded my head.
—With her mouth gagged, Darkness, whose face was flushed red in embarrassment, was shoved into the closet together with me. Together, we looked at the handsome man before us.
“Now then, let me tell you who I am, and why I did such a thing.”
It would be fine if the refreshing man that looked exactly like me stayed silent about it, but for some reason, he went out of his way to tell us.
My lookalike showed a flabby sneer, and then transformed into a pitch-black human silhouette.
“My name is Ragcraft. The leader of the demon king army’s intelligence division, Doppelganger Ragcraft. My my, you guys gave me a run for my money.”
The monster that reported the prime minister’s name had a smooth featureless face that did not have a nose nor a mouth. As if to brag, he began to say some pointless things—
“—And that is what happened thirty years ago. I had finally become a minister of domestic affairs after applying countless number of times during an endless amount of selection periods. From there on, I worked wholeheartedly each and every single day. Useless co-workers who were immersed into casinos. Royalty who were crazy about casinos, and the nobles who loved the casinos just as much. Thanks to their splurging, wasting, and overspending, do you have any idea how hard I was forced to work…? ‘Leaving this country alone would be beneficial to the demon king army, wouldn’t it?’ Do you have any idea how many times I thought that?”
I thought that he was gonna brag, but it seems like he’s just complaining about work.
When the mastermind captures their opponents, they’re supposed to give them some pleasant last words or something, but it seems that all he wanted to do was vent his accumulated frustration.
And thus, Ragcraft continued to talk about his efforts with no end in sight.
Ragcraft, who worked seriously and had no interest in gambling, immediately gained the royal family’s trust.
Until then, everything had been going well.
However, he, who finally had a hand in the domestic affairs after arriving at his position, realized the true state of the nation.
It was losing money at an unbelievable rate, and was in an outrageous debt.
Ignoring that, the royal family continued to play around each and every day.
“Do you get it? All the people of this nation continued live off of the money that the first king had won through gambling, and were driving this country to the brink of collapse. The one who turned that all around was…”
It seems that, perhaps due to his serious nature, this person had worked earnestly.
His original goal was to be a spy.
However, due to his serious personality and wondrous abilities, he had rapidly climbed the social ladder.
In the end, he forgot his original goal, and continued to work earnestly for the sake of the nation.
It seems that, arriving at the highest seat of domestic affairs, the position of prime minister, he suddenly noticed that—
“’There was no need to do all that’, right?”
I see. He wasn’t a serious person, but rather, an idiot.
“After arriving at this position, I finally began to move. Yes, the time to act for the sake of the demon king-sama had finally come. Despite the worthless rumors that you imbeciles spread about the demon king-sama, my master is actually a wonderful personwho is worth working for…”
Ragcraft’s story, that could be one of complaints, hardship, or boasting, continued on for a while. Finally, he breathed an air of satisfaction.
“Fuu~. I’ve always wanted to tell someone about my long years of complaints and hardship, but I couldn’t until now. Thank you for listening.”
So in the end, you were really just complaining?
“Now then, I would like to have my revenge against you guys, who made all my long years of hard work amount to nothing in the end. At first, I really really wanted to kill you, but I thought about it again.”
I couldn’t help but feel that this was taking a turn for worse.
It seems that Darkness was getting the same bad premonition.
“What do you guys hate the most? Yes, that is if that princess Iris is harmed.”
Hearing that, Darkness began to struggle.
However, because she was tied up, she couldn’t do anything.
“Ah, that’s the expression, that’s the expression I wanted to see! HAHAHAHA, I’ll keep you guys here for now. Then, I’ll take your appearance and first go to your companions’ rooms to restrain them in the same manner, tell them the same thing I told you, and then head to princess Iris’ room!”
Saying that, Ragcraft looked directly at me.
“Then I’ll be borrowing your unattractive appearance for just a little longer. FUHAHAHAHAHA, yes, that’s the frustrated expression I wanted to see! Oh joy! Oh joy! What a truly joyful moment this is!!”
Saying such rude things, he copied my appearance, and left the room.
After struggling in the closet for a while, Darkness and I realized that brute force wasn’t going to work.
Since the closet was closed, our noises won’t be heard outside either.
Was the nuisance that couldn’t read the mood not going to come?
Now that I think about it, why did Darkness come to my room at this time?
Ah you can’t do that.
Headbutting the closet several times, and seeing that there was hardly any effect, Darkness gave up on that plan.
Then, Darkness, who seemed like she was about to cry out of love for her master, seemed to have a sudden realization. The look in her eyes changed.
You want to topple the closet?
Or you want to struggle some more?
I used eye-signals to transmit this message. Although I wasn’t sure if she understood my intentions, she began to squirm towards me with bloodshot eyes.
Hey, I don’t understand.
Although I tried to get that message across, she continued to ‘fmmfmm’ and struggle.
Finally, Darkness, writhing like an earthworm, pressed her face towards mine.
Eh, isn’t your face a bit too close?
In this emergency situation, our cheeks were practically touching.
No, actually, given how hard she was trying to stick to me, our mouths were extremely close as well!
Since I wasn’t able to tell her that this wasn’t the time to do that, I’ll just let her—
She bit down on my gag.
Despite the gag in her own mouth, she bit down and pulled on the restraints of my gag.
I finally noticed what Darkness was trying to do.
As Darkness pulled with her teeth, I moved my backwards…!
With the little space that was created, I chanted this short, one-phrase magic.
The fire caused by the ignition magic travelled down my gag, and continued to burn…!
After the bangs of my hair were scorched, the gag was finally burned off.
Although I wanted to use ‘Freeze’ to cool it, now wasn’t the time for that.
“Darkness, I’m going to use ignition magic on you, ok? Even if I use ‘Tinder’ on the ropes binding my body, the ropes will take a long time to burn, and I might not be able to force them apart while that’s happening, but if it’s you…”
As if signaling for me to not tell anyone about it, Darkness vigorously nodded her head.
I set Darkness’ ropes on fire.
Running along the dim, lampless hallway—
Darkness and I, who were still handcuffed, ran through the castle.
“Oi Darkness, where’s Iris’ room!?”
“I don’t know! The one that assigned the rooms was that prime minister, the only room I know is yours!”
If that’s the case, that means we don’t know where Aqua and Megumin were staying in the large castle either huh.
Then, noticing something peculiar, I asked Darkness.
“By the way, how did you know where I was staying? Also, what time did you come? That prime minister restrained me so that I wouldn’t cause any more trouble, but did he tell you to come to my room?”
Darkness shivered in surprise.
“T-, That is… No, this incident could only be resolved thanks to your help, so… I thought that this time, instead of thanking you with something childish like a kiss on the cheek, I would give you something more earnest…”
“Ero-! You are just Ero-ness after all! During this kind of emergency, you came to creep into my bed!? Just how much of a depraved lecher are you!?”
“Y-Y-Y-, You’re mis-! I didn’t plan on going that far! I was just planning on something a bit more soft-…! Also, by the results, I saved you, didn’t I? So isn’t that fine!?”
Hearing Darkness’ defiant reply, I remembered that Darkness, during our stay here, had murmured something about giving me a more earnest gift.
For something so important as this, I wish she’d leave it till we got home.
Although I, who’d thought that I would finally cross the line with mock-Megumin, didn’t really have the right to say anything.
It was then.
Despite the time, some idiot pointed at us and started shouting.
“I finally found you you sexually harassing NEET!”
“So you were here you despicable man! Absolutely despicable! You really are despicable!”
In the darkness, I saw Aqua and Megumin, whom were in their pajamas, charging towards us.
There was no reason for me to be called a sexually harassing NEET, so what’s with these two?
“Oi you, don’t speak of me like a criminal. I don’t have the time to care about your problems right now. More importantly, do you know where Iris’ room is? This is an emergency situation, so if you know anything, please tell me.”
Hearing what I said, Aqua and Megumin exchanged glances.
“Iris’ room is just ahead, but is there anything you want to explain first? I never thought that Kazuma would try to crawl into Aqua’s bed.”
Hearing that, I instinctively burst out—
“Are you kidding me!? Even I have the right to choose whose bed I want to crawl into you know!?”
“You went into people’s rooms and tried to sweet talk them, so what are you trying to say now!? Geez, if Megumin didn’t come to my room to play, who knows what you would’ve done!”
Darkness and I exchanged glances, and lightly nodded.
“Oi, you, just bring us to Iris’ room already! Also, there’s no way I would try to assault Aqua, alright? Even when we were sleeping together at the stables I didn’t do anything, you know!? Even in the store I visit often, I never once looked to you for ‘help’ alright!?”
“Oho-!? You were so passionate just a moment ago, but now that you’ve been rejected, are you so embarrassed that you want to pretend nothing happened!? If you really want to sweet talk me or something like that, use your assets or expensive saké or something! There are a variety of ways, right? If you do that, I even won’t mind linking arms with you!”
I really want to slap this idiot right now.
No, more than that, I want to slap Ragcraft, who created this stupid mess!
“That was just an fake, a doppelganger! It was just a doppelganger! A doppelganger has infiltrated this castle, and it’s targeting Iris!”
Aqua and Megumin turned to exchange a glance towards each other again.
“Hey, are you saying that the ‘you’ that was praising my hair was just an imposter? Then about the incomprehensible things you said, like ‘If you weren’t an Axis cultist, you would be perfect’, that was…?”
“‘You’ also told me that ‘If you weren’t a crimson magic clansman, you would be perfect’. Back then, I really wanted to blow ‘you’ up.”
Saying these things I didn’t want to hear, they led us to Iris’ room.
Please stop! Just what kind of sweet talk did that guy use, please stop already!
Based on the current course of events… Could it be that my imposter was going to sweet talk Iris?
I’d like to say that that’s absurd, since he was convinced that she was my sister, but…
“Here it is. This is the room that Iris is staying in… hm, there are some noises from inside.
Crap, he’s already inside.
The moment Darkness and I moved to—!
open the doors…
An intense shockwave passed slightly above my head.
A few moments later, the door to the room collapsed…
In the room was Iris, who was dressed in pajamas with sword in hand, and whose face was flushed bright red.
Just what sort of sweet talk had she been subjected to?
On the ground, was a black liquid that appeared to be what was left of Ragcraft—
“—I’m truly ashamed!”
The next morning.
After the people in the castle learned about the commotion, we returned to the hotel that we stayed at.
The next morning, we returned to the castle, but…
“Uhm, prince Revi, you’re unrelated to the incident, so you don’t need to…”
Ignoring the presence of his retainers, the prince suddenly prostrated himself the moment he saw Iris, and she was bewildered as a result.
The news that ‘the prime minister was a doppelganger’ had already leaked from the castle, and everyone in town already knew about it.
Now, Iris was not only just a dragon slaying hero, she had become the savior of this country that had freed the nation from the clutches of a doppelganger.
And all the people of this nation also knew that their savior was also engaged to the prince, so the entire castle town was as noisy as a festival.
“I’m sorry! Either way, I was an idiot. Ah, I can’t complain if I’m called an idiot prince! If it weren’t for princess Iris, my country would’ve fallen to the clutches of the demon king army…”
The prince had been like this for a while now.
It seemed that Ragcraft had deep roots in this nation, and now that it had come to light that he was a doppelganger, he seemed to have taken a great shock.
Everyone’s ‘you’re just a country-bumpkin’ attitude towards Iris had completely turned on its head, and worshipped her so much that it was hard to tell who was the leader of this nation.
Then, Iris walked into the center of the audience room, and smiled towards the prostrated prince.
“Prince, you’re also a member of royalty, so you can’t lower your head so easily, you know?”
Hearing that, the prince jumped to his feet, and deeply exhaled.
“I-, I understand, however, as a result of this incident, we owe you a large debt. My nation will never forget Belzerg’s favor. If there are any troubles from here on out, please tell us. Uhm…”
After a bit of hesitation—
“‘Cause Belzerg and Elroad are allied and friendly nations after all.”
Then, he turned his face away.
With the gentle gazes that the retainers and Iris sent towards the prince, a harmonious atmosphere permeated the audience room.
Darkness, who felt that Iris’ presence was too radiant, moved to stand beside her.
“Now then, with this, the incident comes to an end. Everything was wrapped up in an amicable manner and the relationship between our nations has improved. From the results, all’s well, is it not? From today onwards, my nation will be in your care, prince Revi.”
“Ah, although we can only assist you from behind, please leave it to us. However, everything truly ended well. Not to mention, princess Iris’ brother has also taken good care of me. Although it’s unacceptable to resort to trickery, it was a good social experience.”
Compared to when we first met, the prince was unbelievably calm. In a good mood, he—
“Since you’ll be my brother someday as well, feel free to think of this castle as your home, and come here to play around anytime.”
Said some rather incomprehensible things.
Since no one else is offering to give him a straight-man rebuttal, let’s give him a warning.
“Why would I become your brother? Are you high? How did you even think of something like that?”
At my words, the audience room seemed to freeze.
“………… Eh? No, your princess Iris’ brother right?”
“Yeah? But we’re not blood related. I’m just her brother in name and duty.”
The prince tilted his head. Was what I said really that hard to understand?
“You’re not blood related? W-, Which… means? You’re not prince Jadis? So who the heck are you?”
“The number one adventurer of Belzerg, Satou Kazuma.”
Despite my simple reply, the prince didn’t seem to comprehend what I was saying.
“…Ah, you mean you’re brother and sister with special circumstances? Well, in any case, princess Iris admires you like a brother, so I should also…”
As expected, this kid might just be an idiot prince.
“No no. Didn’t you already cancel your engagement with Iris?”
This time, time itself seemed to freeze.
“Hey hey, why isn’t that guy not moving? Is he alright?”
“Uhm, I think it’s best if we just leave him alone for now. Rather Kazuma, there are some things you mustn’t say, alright? Everyone decided to not touch on the subject, so why did you have to tell him?”
Although Aqua and Megumin whined about it, life remained in the prince’s eyes.
“T-, T-T-, That was… j-, just to keep the distance between my nation and Belzerg. I just wanted princess Iris to hate me, so I didn’t really mean it…! Also, I, too, was tricked by the prime minister, and furthermore, as a sign of our nation’s alliance and friendship…!!”
The uncharacteristically desperate prince, unlike from when we first met, showed a pleading gaze towards Iris.
Iris glanced towards me for a mere moment, and showed a troubled expression.
“…Belzerg and Elroad will forever and ever be friends, so let’s also be friends forever.”
Figure out the references of the KonoSuba Light novel titles:
1. Ah, My good(dess)-for-nothing
2. Magic, Chuunibyou, and other Delusions.
3. You’re being summoned, Darkness-san
4. Idiotic Quartet
5. Exploding Crimson Demons, Let’s & Go!
6. Princess of the Six Flowers
7.My bride is 110 million
8. Team Axis Cult vs. Team Eris Cult
9. Destiny of Crimson
10. Gamble Scramble
BONUS: What is written on Kazuma’s shirt (that he wears with his tracksuit)?
Answer in the ‘Quiz’ Channel on discord via ping. If you’re confident you have everything you can email me as well! Also, feel free discuss this with others in the quiz channel, just remember to ping me when you submit answers by including @yuNS in your message!
If all the answers are found before 01/22 (a week from now), I will post the Volume 10 Epilogue, Afterwords, and Side Stories whenever it’s ready! (instead of 01/29).