Chapter 14

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Sara finished off the remaining muscle mushroom.
With this, all of the monsters in this room have been subjugated.

“Good job.”

I put the corpses of the scattered enemies around the room into the item box.
After the battle, although everyone is dead tired, they are all smiling joyfully after hearing my words.

It’s been 3 days since we left the Town of Aranda. Currently, we’re located about 60 kilometers east of the town, in a rank 4 dungeon.
Because a dungeon of this rank can be cleared by ordinary adventurers, I could easily clear it by myself. However, since I suggested that the girls should clear it by themselves, I’m currently being “carried” through.
This dungeon is based on clearing rooms of monsters. After you enter a room, you have to kill all the monsters there, and then the door to the next room will open. It’s a different room every time.
Furthermore, the monsters in the next room are stronger than the monsters in the current room.
Currently, we are in the 8th room. So far, as a result of continuous fighting, the girls have accumulated a lot of fatigue.
However, this dungeon won’t let you take a break.
You have to enter the next room within 3 minutes of completing the current room, or you will be thrown out of the dungeon. After conquering the 5th floor, the girls experienced this phenomenon on their own. They took a break because of the fatigue and were thrown out of the dungeon. They had to start all over from the beginning again.

“Should I do the next room?”
“No. Maika-san, please watch us from behind.”
“I don’t need your help with a dungeon of this rank!”

Muu, these past few days nobody has relied on me. I feel lonely.
All of the monsters we’ve encountered so far were defeated by the girls.
Ever since we entered this dungeon, all I’ve been doing is collecting the corpses.
Everyone is fighting desperately, and I’m just picking up corpses. I feel a little empty inside.

“Umm, Maika-san… Maika-san can use alchemy, right? Can you make some potions that recover stamina by any chance?”
“Wait a minute.”

After Mira’s question, I opened the system screen and looked at the list of potions I could create.
I will honestly die in this dungeon if I don’t do something.
In addition, this is the first time I’m being relied on in a while. I must be useful.
I look through the list and search for what I want.
I look, look some more, and look even more… I don’t have enough material.

“P-please don’t be depressed!”
“That’s right. Maika-san helps us enough by watching over us!”
“Yes, thank you.”

Aa, my heart is touched by the kindness of Celica and Mira.

“Oi, how long are you going to stay like that. If we don’t hurry, we’ll be thrown out again.”

Oh yes, that’s right. I can’t be depressed forever.

Waiting for us in the next room we enter, there are 4 lizardmen.
These 4 lizardmen are nothing but small fries before my eyes, but for the 4 fatigued girls they may end up being difficult enemies.
Is it finally my turn?

“Alright, it’s my tur…”
“Maika-san please stay there.”

What caused this I wonder. I feel like over these last few days everyone has lost their hesitation towards me. In particular, it looks like Mira, who was the most afraid of me at first, had just been acting scared the entire time.
Well, I allowed them this much so I’m a little happy.
I want them to depend on me more though, but eventually, they’ll be able to live without me. If everyone wished for their freedom I don’t know what I’d do. Let’s lock these feelings deep within my chest.

“Oneechan, you take on the right one. Celica-san, you take the left one. Charlotte-chan, please support them with you magic.”
“I understand.”
“Roger that.”

Just like Mira commanded, Sara attacks the lizardman on the right, while Celica attacks the one on the left.
The other 2 lizardmen that were left alone are on their way to help the lizardmen that were under attack but --
ーー They are attacked by Charlotte’s magic.
Tentacles appear from their shadows and restrict the movement of the 2 lizardmen.
At that same moment, Mira shoots an arrow towards the head of the immobilized lizardman.

“This lady is also heading to the front!”
“Yes, please do so.”

One of the remaining lizardmen was killed by Mira’s arrow, while Charlotte punches the head of the second one. Charlotte then surprises the lizardman Sara was fighting against from behind.
The lizardman was attacked by two girls relentlessly, and Sara manages to cut its head off.
After finishing off three of the lizardmen, the girls rally with Celica. The lizardman’s sword breaks, and Celica deals the finishing blow.

It was an overwhelming victory.
It looks like the girls won’t have any troubles with any enemies at this level.
Everyone is growing faster than I had expected.
If their growth continues going the way it is, they’ll be able to clear a high-rank dungeon soon.
If that’s the case, what will I do?

We open the door to the next room.
There is a single golem in the shape of a knight.
The last time we were here, the 4 were disappointed because they weren’t able to defeat this enemy.
With that same enemy before their eyes, the girls look nervous.
I thought it would finally be my time to shine, but the girls don’t seem to have given up yet.
In fact, now they’re staring at the golem with eyes that say, “I will get my revenge on you”.
Looking at this scene, I decided that I’ll refrain from entering this battle.

“Let’s go. Celica-san, you’re the vanguard. Oneechan use [Wind Cutter]. Charlotte-chan please use [Nightmare].”

After Mira finishes giving her orders, Celica steps to the front with her large sword, Sara starts to concentrate on her magic, and Charlotte starts chanting.


Celica attacks the golem. She doesn’t lose to it in strength like the last time they clashed. Actually, Celica now has even more strength than the golem does.

“Wind cutter.”

Charlotte’s, Sara’s, and Mira’s magic flies towards the golem. The tentacles produced by Charlotte’s magic stops the movements of the golem’s lower half. The golem tries to avoid Sara’s magic, but Mira’s Mirage magic hides the Wind Cutter, and its movements have already been sealed by Nightmare anyway.
Even though the golem can’t see the magic, it’s not like the magic was dispelled, so the magic struck the core directly and the golem’s movement was slowed. A big crack forms on the core.
Celica took this chance to swing her sword at the core and completely destroys it.
To defeat the golem this easily, I’m surprised.

“Everyone has become really strong.”

After the battle, I told them my honest opinion, and the girls flushed red in embarrassed from my praise.

“After that time Maika-san fell unconscious, we decided on this together. We can’t save the world if we are merely baggage to Maika-san. We wanted to show you that we can capture a dungeon on our own, but we are still weak.”
“We are Maika-san’s slaves, so it’s proper for us to work hard for our master’s sake. I also want to repay the Maika-san who got me out of that cage.”
“We know that Maika-san does a lot for us. We also want to help Maika-san, but the only thing we can do is to get stronger ourselves.”
“Well, that’s why. You’re the only one who can defeat something like that stupid big troll from before. You’re strong, so you can leave the small fries to us. Well, I will soon overtake you though.”

After hearing the words of Sara, Celica, Mira, and Charlotte, my chest becomes hot.
I want to protect these children. However, these children say that they want to be useful to me, and they want to be able to capture dungeons on their own.
That’s dangerous. Honestly, I want them to follow me from behind for a while. That way I can protect them directly.
However, these children don’t want that. I can force them to follow my orders, but I don’t want to do that. I want to let these children do what they want to do. I don’t want to get in their way.
Then, the things I must do consist of reducing the danger these girls will face, offering them the most support I can, and destroying any enemies the girls can’t take on by themselves.

“I understand. But promise me this one thing. Never overdo it.”

With that decided, once we leave this dungeon, let’s learn some production skills with everyone.
Ah, but we don’t have enough materials. It seems I need to ask Maria about the locations of the high-ranking dungeons.
It will be busier from now on.

Since we defeated the golem, we entered the next room. The room was quite small, and it had a blue shining crystal in the center of it.
Apparently, this is the core of the dungeon.
When I collect the core, the dungeon starts to disintegrate into light particles and fades away.
Everyone voices their admiration for this spectacular event.
That reminds me, did the dungeon disappear when I took the troll with me? Let’s ask Maria later.
I was thinking about such things while watching this scene.

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In the town of Aranda

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