Chapter 3 – Fourth Examination 1 ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ (Part 1)
And while this and that happened, Junpei and the rest continued to run on the nightmarish desert.
This time for sure, when they could already see the woodlands, Judy who is in the lead stopped her feet.
From how it looks, there is a lake with several kilometers or radius have spread in front of them.
That side of the lake is a forest, and this side looks like a desert’s oasis.
It is the same scenery as the Kraken’s floor that Junpei passed through.
「An oasis, or rather……something like the forest and the desert’s buffer zone?」
When he asked that to Ami beside him, *Kokuri*, she nodded.
「After passing through the hallucination desert, the next is a sea of trees. It’s quite famous you know?」
「Sea of trees?」
「The Great Sea of Trees, Famiria. The magnets and five senses would be off, and if one gets lost within it, they are not able to see the light of the sun because of the verdant trees. It’s alright to think that it is a worse version of Mt. Fuji’s sea of trees. The monsters lurking in the forest are atrocious, and it is the level where only when several B-Rank adventurers would form a party that there would be a safety margin」
“She’s really good with the role of explaining the situation……”, when Junpei thought of that while staring intently at Ami, Judy opened her mouth.
「Ara, it looks like there are excellent ones this year? There are only 9 who dropped out?」
Currently, there are 20 people remaining.
「However, we were reduced by about 30% though? How many people are you going to drop out this year……I mean, you’re killing using the test you know?」
To Junpei who explained what everyone felt, many of the examinees nodded.
Looking at how Junpei and the rest seems, Judy laughed pleasantly, and brushed up her long hair with her right hand.
「……and so, there’s unexpected a lot who remained? U〜n……what should we do?」
According to the explanation beforehand, the examination supervisor who is Judy is given the rights to decide the contents of the examinations.
That only means, whatever absurd thing it is coming from her mood, it would be treated as a legitimate exam.
For a while, Judy who thought about something dropped a fist in her palm and said the following.
「Well……the fourth examination……shall we do it as usual after all?」
About 40% of the examinees made a startled expression.
Most probably, they are the ones who were not able to pass the examination last year.
Judy who nodded with satisfaction with their reactions made a face full of smiles and continued.
「Well then, you guys……I will make you, kill each other for a little bit」
The group started murmuring. And there, Ami asked with a sigh.
「That, you said that during the first examination too right? In the end, what we did was status measurement……the same joke won’t work twice though?」
To Ami’s words, Judy snorted and said.
「Actually, I wanted to make you do it during the first examination though? But if I do it when the selection has yet to advanced to some extent, when only those skilled guys with resolutions have remained……even I would get scolded by the guild’s heardquarters」
She means that it is a bad idea to make them really kill each other in the first examination where at worst, they might even be civilians mixed within.
“That’s also convincing”, Junpei nodded.
「Don’t tell me, you’ll really make us kill each other?」
「Well, there would be certain conditions though?」
「……well then, I’ll start explaining the rules. The period is for 5 days. The examination stage will be within the thin barrier made with magic powers that have 3 kilometers radius. And first, we will decide the pairs by drawing lots. After that……after 5 days, if your pair is neutralized in the end, and you yourself is alive and has not been neutralized by anyone else, you will pass」
「If you want to make us kill each other, let’s just fucking start now. Why is it for 5 days in the forest?」
To Junpei’s words, Judy giggled.
「It’s simple. It’s because it’s close to the form of actual battle」
「What do you mean?」
「Little boy? What do you think is the main job of the adventurer’s guild?」
「……it’s hunting monsters, or hunting bounty heads. Or maybe, a helper in battlefields」
「That’s right. The fights like in swordsmanship competitions or magic competitions where it is “ready, start”, are……originally rarer you know?」
「Ara, what a quick-witted boy? Well, in short, this test will measure the overall estimate of your battle abilities. Plans and strategies including reconnaissance and surprise attacks. In the first place, you need to think of obvious things like the one who sees their opponents first has an advantage in a real fight. It’s an examination under such conditions」
Judy who said that fluently looked at everyone with an enraptured expression while rubbing together her hands.
「Just like that, for five days, those two became pairs shall passionately search for each otherーーthat is, that is……just like lovers, drowning in lust」
“Ufufu……”, Judy who said that with an ecstatic expression could only be described as a pervert.
Described with a word, “cumming” or “high” is very close.
And to her, Junpei asked while feeling a little repulsion.
「By the way, what happens in the case where the pair was not defeated?」
Judy turned from her blank expression, and answered with serious eyes.
「In that case, both of them are failed」
“By the way……”, Junpei asks furthermore.
「Earlier, you said “neutralize” right?」
「Yes, that is right?」
「Isn’t it killing each other? Why did you intentionally use the word neutralize?」
「n? Ahh, that is……well, making you kill each other is actually just a joke」
「But, you can do something close to that」
「That’s just making it more complicated」
「Well, if you really kill them, you’ll fail though? There’s no way that an examiner would say out loud that the passing condition is murder right?」
Because he heard about killing each other, Junpei who had a let down almost collapsed on the spot.
「Oi, you really……!!」
And then, Judy bloomed a crazed smile as if she was having fun from the bottom of her heart.
「ーーhowever, you will not be punished for the crime if you killed them!! You will not pass, but it shall be treated as an unfortunate accident during the examination!! Andーーit is in the form of actual battle, so other than murder, “whatever you do or use”……as long as is it for victory, it is acceptable!!!」
Louder clamoring than earlier. Those who experienced last year thought “it was like that after all……”, and looked up to the sky, making a cross in front of their chests.
「You’re really emphasizing whatever we do but, what do you mean?」
「n? Right now, I just said that I will overlook everything you know? Whether it is poison, seduction, robbery, or rape…… of course, it’s not like……there is a rule that, one must not hurt an opponent other than your pair」
Receiving those words, Junpei looked at the girls.
Within the 20 people, there are 5 girls including Ami. They are four which is in their teens to thirties……the so-called, marriageable age. It seems that two of those four, have also taken the examination last year.
As a proof, did they remember something bad, they collapsed to the ground with pale expressions.
And furthermore, for some reason, really, for some reason, one man who similarly took the exam last year……seemed to have remembered something, and fell to his knees with a pale face like the two other girls.
Seeing their reactions, Judy had a delightful expression.
「However, this is an exam. It’s fine whatever you do but, there are rules although it is at the very least. In the case when you killed your opponent……you’ll fail so be careful okay〜☆」
Judy smiled, grinning.
And, at that time, a strange voice was raised within the examinees.
It was a huge man.
His height is about 2 meters and 60 centimeters. He has a physique that anyone would be convinced if they were told that he has the blood of a giant. However, according his the status confirmed in the guild, his huge body is that of a human.
「I-I-It is o-only fe-fail with murder? I-It is o-only f-failing? Ah! Ah Ah!……I w-will not be be-beheaded? Ne-ne-nee? I-I will not? The o-order of kni-knights not chase? O-O-Okay it is? Okay? It is re-really okay?」
The huge man cried out while scattering his saliva.
「Yes, that is true. You have failed last year because of murder but……you were not punished for your crime right?」
「U-Un! Un Un! Un! I WANT SEX! I KILL! But, but, I HATE PRISON!!」
It is an ugly, dirty looking middle-aged man in his forties, with the top of this head bald and has long hair on the sides.
There might be no one better described as a fugitive than him.
However, he is very muscular that it looks disgusting. On top of the dirty underwear which is unknown what color it is at first, he is wearing a waist-guard and a shoulder-guard, carrying a rusted 2-meter huge axe in his back.
「Hya! Hya! Hyahaha! Hyahahaha!! Nee〜ne〜〜? I-I can do? I can do all I want??? Even girls! E-E-eee-Even men……I can do what I want? Just like them last year!! Can I?? Can I do what I want?!!」
While getting hyped up, he pointed at the man and the girls who fell to the ground earlier.
Towards that huge man, Judy nodded, she nodded many times with delight, while making an enraptured expression.
「What the hell is he……? For start, it looks like he did some things last year though……」
Towards Junpei’s question, Ami answered, whispering to his ears.
「He’s John Burg……he’s someone who’s rumored as a lust murderer」
「Lust murderer? No, well……that’s exactly how he looks though」
“Un”, Ami nodded, and continued.
「He’s someone whose head is too “that”, that he got even expelled from the underground guild」
「Expelled from the underground guild……well that’s, quite something」
「Honestly, he’s a psychopath, and his intelligence isn’t different from that of an animal. However, he understands that murder is a serious crime……that’s why it’s troublesome」
「It’s like, there are only a few cases that can publicly be assembled as a murder?」
“Yes”, Ami spat out with displeasure.
「In the past, he got caught for murder, and was imprisoned for 20 years. And from then on, he would only repeat light crimes like theft……but……」
Junpei continued Ami’s words.
「It’s like, although it’s not treated as an incident publically, there would be mountains of corpses if investigated properly?」
「Yes. It’s a miracle that he still not beheaded……in another report, it looks like he started to eat human meat, and the rumors says that after he rapes the victims, he would eat them to hide the evidence……」
「……what a wild bastard」
「And those rumors, they’re probably true. Well, he’s that kind of guy」
「I see now」
“There’s really nothing good even outside the labyrinth……really, there’s no fucking different……”, Junpei thought while making a wry smile.
「n? What happened?」
「No, it’s nothing. And then?」
「It’s better to not get involved with that guy. No, I wish I won’t get involved with him」
Towards Ami who said that with a pale expression, Junpei shrugged his shoulders to show affirmation.
「Leaving me on the side……at least, it’s absolutely better if you don’t get involved with him」
From how Junpei looks at it, that John’s battle strength as a melee power fighter is in the upper ranks of A-Rank.
Compared to that, Ami is a thief, her main work is to support her allies. Adding to that, it is even doubtful if she has reached the B-Rank.
If they fought head-to-head, she’d become just a piece of meat within 20 seconds.
Judy clapped her hand to restart.
「Well then, let’s start drawing lots okay? A fateful thing, that would decide your opponent with passionate love……that’s right, just as if I’m the love cupid. Ufufu……ufufufufu……」
The way to decide with lots is simple.
First, everyone will be given numbers from 1 to 20. And, the ones who got the numbers 1 to 10 will pull the lots of those who had the numbers 11 to 20, creating a pair.
If they happily became pairs, they would look at their faces properly. Two lines are made in the lakeside, just as if they are in a matchmaking party.
The lust murderer John’s partner is, unluckily, the handsome man who fell to the ground earlier. The instant they looked at each other’s faces, John became very happy, and stared at the man’s face very carefully while licking his lips.
「Ushi……Usshishishishi……yo! yo!……you!……thi-this year……too……ah! ah!……hot night……with me……hyaa! hya!……HYAHYAHYAHYA!! T-This time to-too……UHYAHYA!!」
On the other hand, the man who was chosen to be John’s opponent, did his trauma switch got pressed? He started crying while holding his ass, and made a dogeza to Judy.
And in the end, it was decided that he would withdraw from the fourth examination.
「Ara, how boring」
With those words of Judy, his request was accepted.
「Examiner? What happens in this case? Will that problem child proceed to the fifth examination without having anything to do with us?」
Towards Junpei’s question, Judy answered with a composed face.
「The condition to pass is……neutralizing the opponent within five days, and survive without getting neutralized you know? His opponent had already withdrawn so it’s fine to treat him as neutralized, but he still……needs to survive, or not get neutralized right?」
Judy continued her words with enjoyment.
「And most of all……」
「Most of all?」
「Onee-san thinks that, it would be more fun with that boy rampaging around」
“Yareyare”, Junpei who shrugged his shoulders said.
「I am a fool……expecting something from you to stop that monster」
「I wonder how many people would get “taken care” by the boy? Even Judy-oneesan cannot imagine……ahh, I’m getting excited」
And, there, *Pan*, Judy clapped her hands.
「Well then, you remembered the faces of your pairs right? It’s alright to use any way other than murder soーーthose who neutralized their opponent within 5 days and survives will pass. And those who murdered shall be disqualified but overlooked of their crimes. Such good conditions are rare you know? Everyoneーーgo and let out your desires, do all what you want!!」
「……and then, how specifically are we entering the forest which is the examination stage?」
「More accurately, it’s within the barrier inside the forest that has 3 kilometers radius. The group of numbers 1 to 10, and the group of numbers 11 to 20, I will guide each of them to the departure points after leaving some time」
「When the two groups reached the departure point, I’ll immediately shoot up a smoke flare to the sky. That will be the signal for the start of the fourth examination……of course, it is also the signal of the start of the extraterritoriality」
Judy who finished speaking immediately gestured the ten people that Junpei is included in to come.
「The people on the other line, wait here for an hour okay? I’ll bring these boys and girls to their start point first……」
And just like that, with Judy in the lead, Junpei’s group started to walk towards the forest circumventing the lake.