Chapter 21: Russell Town
Regina and Hoyle have returned home for the semester break.
Anastasia and Brandt make plans to visit the intermediate dungeon.
“I’m thinking of going to [Vampire Tower], which is about two days away by carriage; first, we’ll go to Russell, which also has a hunter’s guild, and get some information.”
Hearing Brandt’s suggestion, Anastasia tilts her head at the unfamiliar name.
She had been in the town of Russell in her previous life, but there was no dungeon by that name nearby that she could recall.
“Yes—there are all kinds of traps, and the monsters are strong—it could be classified as an advanced dungeon, but for some reason it’s famous for rarely having any deaths—no lethal traps have been discovered, and for some reason, the monster doesn’t try to kill you, so it’s classified as an intermediate dungeon—it is a popular dungeon because of its attractive materials.”
“I had no idea there was such a dungeon… the name makes me wonder if there are vampires here…”
—The description still doesn’t ring a bell with me.
Maybe it’s a [half-dead dungeon] as well, and that’s why I’ve never visited it?
“No, I’ve never heard of vampires—however, there are numerous bloodsucking monsters, such as leeches. Many of the traps are also bloodsucking. However, they will not try to kill you unless provoked, so many hunters will retreat, heal, and try again. That is why it is said that more blood is sucked in there than is killed.”
That’s why monsters don’t dare kill the intruders and instead continue to use them.
The more deaths there are, the higher the Hunter Guilds set the difficulty level, and fewer people will seek out the dungeon.
The dungeon appears to exist solely to collect blood from intruders.
Anastasia interrupts her train of thought because she doesn’t know anything more specific at this point, though she doesn’t believe it’s a [Half-Dead Dungeon].
“I already took care of the food and other necessities we need in the dungeon.”
Brandt then pulls out a bag, a simple brown cloth bag with a large opening, just large enough to hold a long loaf of bread.
But Anastasia recognized it.
“You’re correct; it was my mother’s; it holds a lot, so don’t worry about your luggage.”
Anastasia’s question was answered by Brandt.
The interdimensional bag is said to be a legacy from the gods. It has an unimaginable amount of space and doesn’t weigh much.
It is so valuable that no one knows how much it would sell for if it were sold.
Anastasia knew this because Shin the Hero had the same item in her previous life.
“People will try to kill you if they find out you have this; as a result, I can only use it when I’m alone.”
“… Are you sure you wanted to tell me?”
Brandt easily revealed it, but Anastasia is concerned that he may be careless.
“Hmm? —Because it’s Anastasia-san…”
But Brandt tilts his head, as if unsure what the problem is.
Anastasia is rendered speechless.
Anastasia is confused by Brandt’s faith in her, and it makes her feel small in the face of all of her inner troubles.
“All right, let’s get ready and go—I could only go to the fifth floor the last time I was there, but with Anastasia-san, we might go higher; I’m looking forward to it…”
Anastasia and Brandt are on their way to the town of Russell in a horse-drawn carriage.
There were other passengers on the coach, but it was a quiet ride with only the occasional chatter.
They spent the night in the open, but there was no danger from animals or bandits, and they arrived in the town of Russell without incident.
“Anastasia-san, be careful on the steps.”
Brandt was the first to exit the carriage and offered Anastasia his hand. Throughout the journey, Brandt was always casually attentive to her needs.
Anastasia, who had never been treated like this before, was perplexed, but she took his hand and exited the carriage.
Let’s start with the hunters’ guild.
The Hunter’s Guild in Magic Academy City was small, but this town’s Hunter’s Guild was quite large.
When you enter, you’ll see the same requests on the walls as in the magic academy city, but it’s a lot louder and more lively, with people recruiting party members and negotiating for something.
“It’s been six months since I’ve been here; I’ll ask if anything has changed.”
Brandt left to ask a guild member a question.
Anastasia examines the request posted on the wall while she waits.
There are some monster skins and fangs for decoration requests, in addition to objects that could be used as materials for medicinal or magical spell experiments.
“Are you new around here, pretty ojosan? —I’d be happy to show you around.”
A man says something near Anastasia, but she assumes he’s not talking to her and keeps her gaze fixed on the request.
“Hey, hey, come on, you’re such a bore—look me in the eyes and let me hear your lovely voice.”
Again, a voice can be heard saying something nearby.
Anastasia is disgusted because he appears to be hitting on someone nearby, and she wishes he could do it somewhere else.
“Hey! Will you stop ignoring me?!”
Anastasia is startled when she feels a firm grip on her shoulder.
She turned around to see the man who had just been hitting on someone looking at Anastasia with annoyed eyes.
Anastasia is stunned and has no idea what is going on.
“Anastasia-san, sorry for keeping you waiting…. Hey! Get your filthy hands off her…!”
Brandt reappears, yanking his hand off Anastasia’s shoulder and pushing him away.
Then he stepped between Anastasia and the man, as if to shield her.
Anastasia looks surprised at Brandt’s back, having never seen the normally calm Brandt raise his voice before.
“Tsk… so you’re with a boyfriend—huh? Brant, is that you?”
The man clicks his tongue, but when he sees Brandt’s face, he blinks and asks.
Brandt raises his eyebrows and mutters as well.
The two men appear to be acquainted.