Prologue – The Melancholy of the Great Sage ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼
「What……you’d take me outside?」
Takeda Junpei who got out of the Dryad’s floor, he is currently standing in a white mysterious space.
In front of him, the one who summoned Junpei and the rest to a different world with a whim, aged 300 million, an immortal Shota God.
In a very long time, having free time and boredom and even unable to die, it was really boredom out of the imaginations, and unable to endure the torture of living and endless life, it’s a God whose head was a little like “that”.
And he is in the usual black leather jacket and tight leather pants that he wore.
「You’re hasty……well mentioning that later……well, in other words, you’ve become a player」
To Junpei who was dubious, the God said that while making a fearless smile.
The God interrupted Junpei with his hand, and shook his head sidewards.
「This is also too early huh……well, even if I explain it to you now, there’s a higher probability that you’re going to die before you reach there……forget it」
「It looks like it’s useless even if I tell you to teach me」
「It’s nice that you understand quickly. In short, well, making a long story short, it’s that you’ve come to a different dimension. Think of this, the monsters that you’ve killed, each of them have the same, or maybe more, they have the strength of the Demon King in the outside world. You defeated them all easily all by your self」
Junpei made a sullen face there, and said bluntly.
「……well……all of them weren’t ways that couldn’t be praised though」
Puckering his lips, *Hyuu*, the God whistled.
「Already accepting it as natural……I thought that you’re already become some scum, but this is interesting. While slurping blood and crawling on the hell dyed with shit and organs……it looks like you still have a moral character. I think that’s something not easy to do」
The God pats Junpei’s shoulder and nodded several times.
Junpei clearly broke his expression, and while slapping away the God’s hand, he asked frankly.
「And so, what do you really want? It would be nice if you start continuing the thing you’re saying that you’d let me out of here?」
「You’re cold……it’s our reunion after a while, can’t you be at least friendly with me?」
「Be friendly? ……although these damn things are happening to me because of your past time?」
「Meaning, you hate me?」
Junpei nodded greatly while glaring.
「Really, the man that you are……. I can burst your body with just the flick of my finger you know?」
Junpei who remembered the splatter scene that happened to Kido Shouta that got summoned with him that day, his expression wavered in an instant, but once again, he glared at the God.
「From the time, that I ate the No Life King’s meat……I have decided」
「Not anymore, to the ones that uses violence as their asset……whoever it is, I’ll never bow my head. Even to Kido……and even to you」
Only in an instant, the God made a dumbfounded face.
And when his expression broke, he started laughing as if a river broke.
He crouched in his place, and collapsed.
The God tossed and tumbled and rolled around while holding his stomach, and tears of laughter were swelling at the end of his eyes.
「Hahahaha!! Fufu!! Hyaha!……my stomach……it hurhaha!!」
Junpei was left to himself completely, but the God didn’t care and continued to laugh.
After a few minutes of rolling around.
When he finally calmed down, he stood up, took a deep breath, and started talking.
「Uhh, un. You’re really good, youーーI like you」
「That’s why I’m telling you, why the hell did you come here?」
「Ahh, that’s right, that’s right, it’s about that. There’s one bad news」
The God’s indifferent, and strangely light tone.
ーーthis guy who thinks that all human life are equally worthless, the『Bad News』from him.
To the bad feeling from it, cold sweat ran on Junpei’s back.
「Un. It’s bad news even for you and even for me. After all, for my, you being able to continue to live links to my past timeーーit means it’s critical」
「……hurry up and say it」
The God wickedly smiled sweetly.
「In the ones that entered this labyrinth, how many people who ate the No Life King’s meat on the first floor are there?」
「How can I know that, you idiot」
The God exaggeratedly shook his shoulders, and mischievously took out his long tongue.
It was really pissing off that each of every movement he does was suitable to the paintings and carvings that are displayed in an art museum.
「The adventures that entered the labyrinth, or maybe sacrifices that were thrown forcefully……their total number is 400882. And within those……other than you, there existed 15 people who ate that meat」
“Oi……”, Junpei couldn’t help to answer with a dismayed voice.
「But, Status Ailment Resistance skills should be needed to eat that meat……it should be impossible normally. It’s hard to defeat in the first place……that’s right, that poison is cannot be gained by normal means……. that’s why, wasn’t it because its rarity that I was able to survive?」
The God told him coldly.
「If there are people who originally have status ailment resistance skills, is that that much of a strange thing?」
After thinking there for a while, Junpei continued.
「So, what happened……to them? Were they, able to clear it?」
And then the God said with a light tone as if to tell today’s weather.
「Everyone died you know? And very easily too」
「If I’m correct, you received the explanation from the start right? That this is a labyrinth with 0% survival rate」
「There’s 15 of them……and all of them? How much of a fierce effect this poison have……I’ve experienced it first hand……?」
「The story’s simple, in this labyrinth from now on……neurotoxin doesn’t have that much of an effect. That’s simply it. In the first place, don’t you think that it was lucky enough since status ailment had an effect on the boss class Cerberus?」
ーーthe God’s words only meant, as a death sentence to Junpei.
「Oi oi, wait a minute……the poison……are you saying it wouldn’t have an effect……?」
To Junpei’s question that was near to a scream, *Kokuri*, the God nodded.
「That’s correct? But……you aren’t stupid right? And you, that you were not expecting that……I don’t believe it though?」
「No, that’s true. It’s true that I had that on my mind……but, uhmm, that being said frankly to my face, it’s a little……」
「Was it a shock?」
After a pause, Junpei admitted it honestly.
「Generally saying, it would be like that」
“Hmm……”, after thinking for a while, the God said.
「Although that’s been said, I’m only saying that it would be harder for the poison to have an effect you know? It’s not like all of the benefits of the poison you have right now have disappeared」
Junpei’s expression softens a little, but it clouded again immediately.
「But, all of those who have the poison’s skill……they all died right?」
“Haha”, the God laughed interestingly.
「Well, within the monsters, there are ones who can nullify the poison after all you know?」
Just right earlier, the God said, that the benefits of the poison haven’t disappeared.
But in the same breath, the declaration of nullification.
Junpei has the status ailment resistance himself, but resistance and nullification completely have the different meanings.
To the God’s evasive way of talking, it boosts Junpei’s anger.
「You bastard……are you fooling around? Didn’t you just damn say……that my benefits haven’t disappeared……?」
「Well, this is vexatious. In truth, I’m not lying. From now on, it is basically harder for the poison to have an effect. And, there are also ones who can nullify it. If there’re ones that can be affected by it, there’s also ones that cannot. There’s no failure there as a language right?」
「Well, just like the time with Cerberus, letting it eat one hand……from now on, a strategy like that, you wouldn’t know if the poison has an effect or not, so……you probably cannot do it. If you’d do that again, you might not be let off with only your hand you know?」
「As I’ve thought, you’re really fooling around huh? Basically, my strategies are similar to that. And, I can only do that……. that at least, you know it right?」
「Fooling around, you say……well, if it’s to have fun I’ll do anything though? Making fun of you, is also one part of it」
And, the God fixed his playful attitude, and nodded seriously.
「Making fun of me……you say」
「Or maybeーーeven your fate」
Shaking his head sidewards a little, the God made a difficult expression as if he was thinking of something.
「No, maybe it’s more proper to call it alteration……」
Junpei couldn’t understand what he was trying to say at all, but the God was a person like that so it couldn’t be helped.
But even so, he asks him a question to communicate.
After all, with each of this boy’s words……there is probably information that it would be deadly if he missed it.
「Sorry, can you teach it so that I could understand……what do you mean?」
The God shook his head as if he couldn’t entertain those words.
「Seriously speaking, there are rules in this labyrinth that even I can’t go against with. In one of those rules, that it is『Impossible to clear』……it is something that applies to you right now, so it would be against the rules」
「Rule? What are you saying since earlier……?」
The God tilted his head as if to get troubled.
「I’ll explain it a little bit simpler. Listen carefully okay? Not limited to you, the gates of this labyrinth for all humans that are more than a certain age. No, in the characteristics of this labyrinth, it needs to be opened……oh, if I explained more than this you’re only going to be in a panic, so you only need to remember this. This labyrinth needs to be able to be cleared by somebody somewhere. Even if the possibility of doing that is almost zero, it shouldn’t be completely zero. However……in reality, there’s one problem that is occurring. Saying it shortly……whatever happens, you cannot clear the next floor with your status」
「It cannot be cleared?」
「You tilted to one status too much」
「For example, the more you advance the floors, the monsters also gets stronger to a different dimension. If that happens, the whole facility……the walls, or the door entrance needs to be more durable ones. That’s why from now on, even a laughable situation that you wouldn’t be able to open the door with your strength since it is too heavy would happen seriously. In the first place, it’s a dungeon created for the ones that don’t fit in the category of humans. It’s only that it is not expected for someone who’s weaker than a normal human to be able to reach there」
「To the one that created this labyrinth, it didn’t expect for someone to place status to the extremes as much as you. So I appeared there to give you a helping hand」
Junpei started to talk with a voice filled with a little bit of anger.
「I don’t like beating around the bush. It would be good if you say it from the conclusion?」
The God passed a note to Junpei.
「This is, for things like opening the door, or the terrains inside the roomーーfor example, if you would be able to endure the magma from far away, it is the status data needed the least to clear those in that meaning. Even how much you use your head, whatever you doーーthe basic stats without the addition of the equipments……it’s impossible without this status. It is good to say that if you don’t clear this, it’s the at the level that it would even be impossible for you to breath inside the room in the floors from now on」
And there, Junpei crinkled his expression.
「Even if I were to fix my status at the least points needed as this note says, my level lacks in hundreds……if you can raise my status with something like God powers, it would really be a thankful thing」
The God shook his head sidewards there.
「I can’t cooperate directly that much」
「Do you know? That the worst scums are those who only say things and do nothing?」
The God laughed cheerfully.
「Haha! Well, it’s only an easy story that the Skill Hunter job only needs to be an advanced one」
「Raising the job? My aptitude is jobless……」
「The aptitude from the time you were born, meaning, the job is decided whether you are going to be good at something or not though. But that is only the settings in the start, and it is also possible to change jobs or to advance jobs if you clear the requirements. For example, with your speed status right now, you should be able to change to the highest rank of the thief’s job」
「Thinking about it, the cronies of Kido……they were saying things like……when a certain amount of status was reached after being an A-Rank adventurer, the requirement for an advanced job would be cleared, or something like that」
「That’s right. The thing called adventurer’s guild, it also has a meaning as the job skills guild. If you only clear the requirements, they would help you to change jobs. That’s why, everyone, they aim to become an A-Rank adventurer, or further than that」
And there, Junpei let out a sigh.
「But, well, it’s nonsense even if I can do that. After all, I cannot move from here since I’m trapped in this labyrinth」
And there, the God shook his shoulder and said this.
「I told you earlier right? This labyrinth, to all of those who lives in this world……even if the possibility is very low, at the point that they walked down to the first floor, it needs to be possible to be cleared. And, the situation that occurred right now is not your responsibility as a player, but that this labyrinthーーthat only ones with advanced jobs are expected to enter it, it is clearly the incompetence of the dungeon creator. That’s why, there’s a need for you to go to the outside world from here and have your job a grade up」
Silence for a while, and after a few hesitationsーー
Junpei instinctively let out a voice.
「Oi, that means……aren’t you telling me that I can get out?」
「That’s why, I’m telling you since earlier right? And also……going outside is only temporarily. Your soul is already eaten by this labyrinth as a sacrifice, and I can’t intervene with that fate」
「What do you mean eaten……?」
Not answering to that question, the God puts a hand to Junpei’s shoulder.
「The duration is six months. On that point, even if you didn’t have an advanced job, or even if it becomes a situation that it is impossible to clear, you would be forcefully taken back」
「If, at that time, I didn’t have an advanced job, what are you planning to do?」
「n? Ahh, well, of course. I’ll laugh while saying『Die in this labyrinth』you know? After that, I won’t have something to do with you anymore. After all, you were only that much……I’ll just find another toy」
「……I see now」
「Ahh, that, that, it’s about that. And so, the reason that I’m siding with you……is simply, there’s something that I’m very curious about」
「ーーI also told you this earlier, I want to see your revenge play. That is the thing that I have most interest on right now」
Junpei who was dumbfounded, opens his mouth.
“Un, un”, the God nodded several times.
「I’ll just repeat it though, honestly speaking you know. I don’t really mind if you die. Even if you die in the labyrinth, even if you die in the Carnival, or even if you get killed by the guys outside. If it was fun, whichever of those is good. But, you who have reached inhuman level right now, to your classmates once before, and the common people of the outside world, on how you would treat themーーjust thinking of it, it really is exciting you know! This is really, something that I truly feel!」
And, he continued.
「ーーand most of all, I want to see that!! I refuse to let you die before that!! If you’re going to die, please die after you return to this labyrinth!!」
*Gokuri*, Junpei held his breath.
「So……what should I do to go outside……?」
And there, *Pan*, the God claps his hand, and smiled sweetly.
「And by the way, leaving that aside……」
「No, don’t leave it aside! You can’t leave that to the side there right!」
The God completely ignored Junpei’s pleading that was almost screams.
「Ne〜, don’t you want to know?」
The God approached his face to Junpei’s, and brought his lips to his ears.
When his breath tickled Junpei’s ear, the God whispered suggestively.
「The creation of this labyrinth, or something like……the meaning of its existence」
「The creation of this labyrinth……you say?」
While pushing back the God’s chest to cut off the unpleasant feeling in his ears, Junpei thought about the words of the God.
This labyrinth to Junpei, he only has the recognition of it as the worst punishment game in the world.
But, thinking of it very carefully, no, even if you don’t think that much, it’s true that there’s a lot of strange things.
In the first place, the monsters that are completely ignoring the ecosystem of the outside world, why do they only exist inside this cave.
It was really proper being curious about it.
「Originally, the difficulty of this labyrinth wasn’t this abnormal. But even if I say that……u〜n, how can I say this」
After thinking for a while, *Pon*, the God hits his palm.
「Maybe it’s easier to say that it’s what you call on the RPG games, as the extra dungeon huh?」
「The bonus dungeon after defeating the last boss and clearing the game? But, the mobs of this labyrinth has equal strength with Demon Kings……and the strongest class of S-Rank adventurers, there were a lot of them killed on the first floor like trash right? If it’s a normal game’s extra dungeon, the party would be annihilated in the first encounter……it shouldn’t have a difficulty like that right?」
「Un un, that recognition isn’t wrong. And then……the difficulty here is only about that much originally. If you have the strength to subjugate the one called a Demon King in the outside world, or maybe, if you’re an S-Rank adventurer……you should probably be able to clear the early floors to an extent, or maybe you will be able to have a way to return to the outside world……it’s that kind of dungeon」
「Are you saying……that it was changed into this ridiculous dungeon because of something?」
「Well, more than half of the reason is me though」
「I see now. Well, I thought that might’ve been the case」
When the God smiled sweetly, Junpei took out the Cerberus’s Canine from his waist, and in a completely surprising attack, he threw it with all the power he could put on it to him with an intent to kill.
As if the sudden surprise attack was something that was fun, the God picked up the Cerberus’s Canine in the air while smiling.
「If the Cerberus’s Canine that has a God killer attribute would have an effect on you, I wanted to see it though……」
「I will have no comment on that……whether or not it would have an effect, in the case that you were able to do an attack like that to me, I want to see your expression at that time.……by the way, I want to ask something」
「n, what is it? Is it about why I came to wanting to kill you?」
「No, that’s wrong. You……I know that you are always boiling with the killing intent that you’d want to kill me if there was a chance. And that I am also saying things as if to pour oil in that. Well, not something that doesn’t matter like that, the thing that I want to ask isーーare you really not afraid of me?」
The God placed his pointing finger and middle finger together, making a posture that he could snap his fingers anytime.
「Afraid? Me, to you? That’s a bad joke」
Making a dumbfounded expression, the God talked.
「I don’t remember saying jokes though……if I snap my finger, not being able to do anything, you will be……」
And there, Junpei answered with also a dumbfounded expression.
「For you, including human, all living things equally have no value right?」
「In Earth……other than humans who are creating games……that’s probably true」
「On top of that, you went out of your way to come and observe me right?」
「……what do you want to say?」
“In short……”, Junpei raised his middle finger towards the God.
「Are you thinking that I haven’t noticed that you scumbag!! For your way of killing time……it means that I’m the best actor in that stage right? So there’s no way for you to kill me that easily!!」
With an expression as if disgusted, or maybe impressed, the God whispered.
「In this situation where you might die with a single mistake, and on the top of attacking me, those words……」
「Are you discontent, dear God?」
With a shining expression, the God let out a sigh of amazement.
「Nope, it’s the opposite. I now know how you were able to survive up until now. It’s true, that reaching the assumption that I probably would not kill you, isn’t that difficult. But, normal humans, to that guess, they wouldn’t bet their lives on it……. really……a man like you……」
And there, the God walked towards Junpei, and hugged him.
Breathing where he could tickle his ears, he continued.
「I’ll admit it. It’s completely what you’ve said. I’m very interested in you. Will you be able to clear this labyrinth, or what would be the ending to the revenge that you would do, and what will you do in this labyrinth after knowing everything……un, it’s very interesting……ahh, I just noticed right now, but your true strength might really be having the characteristics of a gambler」
「No, maybe it’s the one you call catastrophizing. Anyways, your true special characteristic, that isーーif there are no other choices, even if it is reckless……to that only hope, and which is also the best choice, it’s about you being able to bet all of your life on it」
And, the God continued as if he was having fun from the bottom of his heart.
「That, it’s not something that a normal human can do you know?」
To the God’s amazed expression, Junpei couldn’t say anything back.
Silence for a while.
「……get off already!」
To the boy that was grinning while hugging him with strangely voluptuous expression while looking straight at him, Junpei roughens his voice while feeling nervous.
Even if he knew that it was a guy, having the distance to a very beautiful face where their breath touches each other, he couldn’t help getting confused.
And also, the breath doesn’t only tickle his ears, but also his nose.
The sweet smell accelerates Junpei’s heartbeat.
ーーno, maybe, he might be a girl?
“With his clothes, and with his chest not having any bulge……”, to Junpei who started to get into extreme confusion, the God lightly kissed his cheek.
「Oi, you!……I mean, you’re a boy, and I’m a boy……eh? ah?……eh?!」
「You’re unexpectedly cute, huh. Well, from now on, when you’re advancing in this labyrinth, I’ll warn you to be careful of sex appeals」
And there, the God took off his arms from Junpei, and took a one step away.
「If I’m a boy or a girl……that’s a secret. If there’s a time when we enter the same bed……I’m looking forward on your expression that time」
「Bed, you say……I mean, you’re pretty secretive huh」
Reaching out his pointing finger in the front of his nose, *ChiChiChi*, the God mischievously clicked his tongue.
「If it’s going to be fun if I’ll tell you, I’ll tell it to you, and if it wouldn’t be fun, I won’t you know? Why are you saying such normal things?」
「……not doing something with a waste of time huh. Hey, it would be really nice if you start going on the main part. Was it the creation of this labyrinth? I mean, what happened to going outside……」
「It’s properly connecting about going outside. That’s why you can relax and listen until the end. Well……honestly, those guys using the rule for their side……it’s a little unpleasant. But even that’s said, it’s not like I can do it by myself」
「……even if I ask what the hell is “those guys”, would the answer be you can’t answer?」
*Hyuu*, the God laughed cheerfully.
「Correct……. well, with that, the creation of this labyrinthーーwas it?」
Junpei affirmed by nodding without saying anything.
「You remember that I’ve spent time alone that’s unimaginable right? About the prison of time called immortality」
「Well, who would forget someone who had an introduction that has that much impact in the first meeting」
「So, even if this world’s outside of my management, I can intervene up to some extent. And the time when I would be able to intervene you directly, it when you reach over level 1000 thought……well, that doesn’t matter. Anyways, I intervened in this labyrinth, that’s why I’m here」
「And so. There was a time when I intervened in this labyrinth before」
Shrugging his shoulder, Junpei answered.
「And at that time also……your favorite huh, a pitiful lamb exploring this labyrinth?」
「Nope, that’s wrong. The story’s very simple……in short, I placed a trap」
「Un. It’s a trap……and……a very special one. Thinking of it right now, I wasn’t thinking that much at that time. That trap was too filthy」
There were clouds on the God’s expression.
The boy who doesn’t have any sense of guilt from killing people and playing with fateーーthose words were truly mixed with a color of reflection.
Reacting to that, Junpei held his breath.
「That thing making you say that……it’s really that much huh? What in the world……did you do?」
「Ahh, I really did, something that much」
「And, what kind of trap was it?」
The God who was looking far away looked up to the ceiling as if to confess.
「At that time……I might’ve been searching for someone who could understand me. Uhh, un. In other words, it might be more proper to say making someone experience what I had」
「Making someone experience that……you say?」
The God let out a very deep sigh.
「Well, I was probably also young. I wanted someone to feel the same thing as I did. It was only that」
Junpei had cold sweat on his back.
A bad feeling that was the worst up until now, run throughout his internal organs.
「What……do you mean? Are you saying……」
「There’s a safety area here right? I think that you also know, but there are many patterns, until you reach a safety area. Irrelevant to danger, ones that luckily found the safety area and be able to rest, or maybe, ones that ran with all of their lives from monsters and was able to reach there somehow. Well, there’s a lot of them. And the trap I made was for the latter」
“Ahh”, Junpei understood that his bad feeling was gradually turning into a reality.
“Most probably……”, Junpei asked the God even though he knew.
「In short, what you were expecting, that in cases when they’re able to run up until the safety area with their lives……for example, when there’s a monster outside in that situation, they wouldn’t be able to go out……it’s that kind of a complete checkmate situation right? And……what is the trap that you made in that safety area, hurry up and say it」
「I made an entrance where they can go underground. Maybe you can just imagine a manhole? Of course, I wrote in the explanation properly what kind of it was though? It’s not fair with deception」
Junpei asked with a little anger.
「That’s why I’m saying, what did you put in that entrance?」
The God answered carelessly as if it was nothing.
「It’s a library. Ah, there was also a training room」
A word that was different to what Junpei was thinking came out, but the following words that the God said were as he had expected.
「That’s right. When you enter there, the metabolism of the body forcefully stops, and with that meaning, that person became near to an undead. There’s no need to eat, and peeing and defecation would be done in the first days, but it would completely stop after that. Of course, you can’t suicide. And, in the library where literature from everywhere and anytime is stored, you can just leisurely think of a way to escape that dilemmaーーit just means that that was written in the entrance」
“Ahh”, this time, Junpei looked up.
The God, said that he want someone who would experience what he had as a prisoner of time.
ーーof course, if you enter there once……
「And, how long is the “sentence”?」
「It’s one day」
To Junpei who was dumbfounded, “Un”, the God smiled pleasantly like an angel.
「It’s one day in this time. Well, it would be 90 million years in the time of the world library. And of course, that’s also written in the entrance. And, at one time, a party leader whose clearing the labyrinth raised his hand」
Junpei couldn’t say anything.
On the back of the innocent smile that you can call beautiful, he could only feel shivers from them anymore.
「It’s just, well, with all doors closed being driven to a corner by monsters. There are no possibilities of a reversal……and, in the situation where you would die of hunger……there’s no human who wouldn’t choose that right?」
「90 million years……huh」
「That’s right. You can say it as eternal. A year for 90 million times. A whole life of 80 years more than a million times. And a millennium for 90 thousand times」
Junpei whispered as if to spat out.
「In other to survive, making them enjoy an eternal life far more painful than dying huh……goodness, that’s worse than a devil’s contract that often appears on B-class movies」
「Haha. I’ll take that as a compliment. Just, with that trick of mine, a problem occurred」
「That I gave them too many books, and the person itself has a great disposition. That man’s job, it was Sage you know. Of course, his head wasーーvery bright」
「You gave too many books?」
And there, the God grinds his teeth.
「No, even though I said books, it’s Grimoires that are to the extent of the ones in the level of this world, and basic arithmetic and physics books until the high school level in Japan. Other than that, there was only encyclopedias and normal history books. Well……there was, a book that wasn’t good. That didn’t make it better」
「Meaning, that guy, within the time that you could think as eternal, he read all of those and mastered them……and learned various kinds of magic in this world……? And that tremendous strength……it was even enough to make you feel unpleasant……?」
“Haha”, the God scoffed at Junpei’s words.
「It’s only about hundreds of thousands of books. It wouldn’t take a thousand years to read all of them. And even if you can learn that much magic……even in the labyrinth that once had a low difficulty, it would’ve been impossible to clear it」
「Then, what is it exactly……?」
「Inside the time cosmos, a normal human could only maintain his sanity for the first hundred years. And after a millennium had passed the consciousness would start to daze. It would become vague if you’re existing there or not」
「You really know the details huh」
「……well, I’ve experienced it after all」
Confirming that there was insanity in the God’s violet eyes, Junpei held his breath.
After a silence for a while, the God started to talk.
「And after hundreds of thousands of years had passed, a human could only go crazy. Even I was like that, but……well, I’m a God so if my spirit completely goes “there” it would be bad, but when my mind’s about to go “there” I forcefully return it back though」
「For me, I can see that you’re pretty much a resident of “that” side of the world」
While putting out his tongue, the God sent a wink to Junpei.
「Oh goodness, excuse me for that. Uhh, honestly, am I normal or abnormal, or how can I be seen from another person’s perspective, I don’t really know it myself」
*Fuu*, letting out a sigh at the same time, Junpei asked the God.
「And then, what happened to the man who got caught by the trap?」
Seeming like, “I really forgot……”, *Pon*, the God hit his palm.
「Long story short, he endured it without getting crazy」
「Well, rather than that, he was a “super” research maniac. Using all the time that’s given, and all the materials he used all of them to magic research and exploration for the truth」
Inside Junpei’s head, flashed a scene where an eccentric physics college student simply repeating a biological experiment using mouses.
“But……”, he thought.
「Alone for 90 million years……? Without getting crazy……?」
「It seemed like he finished the research itself after a few million years though. And, well, this is really laughable, but……at the really end, what he was researching for was dimension teleportation. He was on the right track until the escape from the library, but he couldn’t complete it with only the materials there. And so, he gave up escaping. But, well, it looks like he was also serious」
「Serious, you say?」
「The same as you……it’s revenge. Probably the strong hatred against the one that imprisoned him to that room, for an unbelievable duration……huh. And in the middle of his research, he was able to reach my existence on his own」
“And”, the God continued.
「Do you know that some kind of craziness……humans originally have them as a protective response?」
「In cases when you’re unable to endure too much stress, that the brain uses a physiological phenomenon called madness as a way to resolve the problem, is that it?」
「That’s correct. You really know a lot of things as a high school student huh?」
「When I shut myself in at home when I was bullied, it was my hobby to check many kinds of articles in encyclopedias on the internet……well, don’t mind that」
「He was able to found out. That if he gets crazy his want for revenge would fade away. In the first place, it’s difficult to continue having hatred for one person for 90 million years. Emotions are things that would weather after all……. well, that being said, anyways……honestly, I was also surprised. Plunging sticks through his ears and tampers with his brain, using a powerful drug to himself, anyways……just like that, he continued to preserve his sanity, and while heightening his own magic powers, he spent the very long time that you can call unreasonable」
「……you seem very happy」
“Un”, the God nodded and said.
「It was a good way to kill time」
「That’s right, it’s pretty much the same as observing you……you know」
With eyes looking far away, the God started to speak while carefully remembering every each one of them.
「And just like that, one day on this world ended, and he returned. And there, he was surprised. After all, until that time, the Cerberus that pinned them in that safety area, he was able to kill it with an attack using one basic magic. Ahh, of course. Even though the difficulty of the labyrinth at that time was low, it was something that happened in a very deep floor after all……you can think of it as the same Cerberus that you confronted」
「……that group, no, what happened to that man? And, to that man, how does the difficulty of this labyrinth raising has a relation?」
The God hit his palm as if to end that story, and shook his head sidewards while laughing.
「You should see that for yourself. It’s not good to take your side too much after all. And also……the residents that you would meet in the next floors in this labyrinth, they would show you some answers」
“Hmm……”, when Junpei placed his hand on his chin, the God nodded with satisfaction.
「And with that, well then, bye bye!」
To the God that was waving his hand with a very wide smile, Junpei let out an angry voice.
「Oi!! Weren’t you going to let me out of here!!」
“Ahh, now that you say it”, the God opened his eyes widely.
「I forgot. About that……it’s after, 5 floors」
「That’s right. After five floors……there should be an interesting event that would happen. So I think that it’s around there that it’s about time for you to go outside you know? If the time is ripe, I would appear in front of you once again. By the wayーーthe next floor really makes it impossible for you to clear it……so I changed it. It’s what you call an emergency treatment, and you can think that that kind of measures would only happen once」
“And”, the God continued.
「It’s the end of the service there. From now on, for eternity, I will absolutely never save to in this labyrinth. I won’t revive you even if you die. And even in the five floors later, it wouldn’t be an exception alright?」
「……………no one’s expecting that much」
“By the way……”, Junpei took out his status plate from his waist, and reaches it out to the God.
「Recently……there’s a status that I’m able to see……」
Taking the status plate, the God crinkled his expression dubiously.
「This thesaurus points, what is it?」
And, as if to get the point, the God nodded.
「Ahh, I see, you also finally been “able to see” it huh」
「That’s why, I’m asking you what this is」
The God placed his hand in front of his nose suggestively, and whispered with a small voice.
「Thesaurus……it means 『Treasury』 in the Greek language. But, goodness……she also uses an old name」
「Well, maybe someday……I’ll just explain it as something like Pandora’s Box」
「……that’s why, I’m asking you what it means. By the way, you’re not planning on answering about who『she』is huh?」
「That’s correct. If I explained it, I’ll get her angry……I mean wouldn’t that be boring. Well, there’s a lot of things that was done with you since the time that you were teleported to a different world……I mean, you’re really walking under a difficult fate huh. There’s also that I got interested in you. Ah, that’s right, that’s right, it’s about the thesaurus points huh. When you were thrown here, the 100 numbers it had fallen by 7, and fell by 4 during the fight with Cerberus, fell by 3 during the fight with the No Life King, and fell by 3 with the reunion with me. Total of, 17 points falling, and the current number is 83. Ahh, the requirement to be recognized was cleared when it fell under 90 if I’m correct huh.…… well, you’re going to know the results very soon. However, the activation is random so it’s not something that you should rely on alright」
「……things done? ……oh, well, you probably don’t have plans on answering that properly right?」
With a very wide smile, the God nodded.
「ーーthat’s correct. Anyways, you need to clear the remaining five floors. If you complete the requirements, I would once again appear in front of you when the time comes」
「Goodness……you’re reallyーーhey, eh?! Oi?!」
Junpei was standing in a dome-shaped space.
Fresh leaves that tickles his nose. If said in Japan, it’s about the first of summer, it might be close to the smell surrounding a stream.
Well, in that space full of the fresh fragrant smell of greens, Junpei was standing there.
Most of the surroundings were forests, but in the direction ahead his sight, he could see grasslands that spread, and words fell out from his mouth.
「Well then, when I noticed it……God already disappeared」
Settlements that spread in front of him, Junpei observed that very carefully.
The times when he felt the smell of a civilization, it was the second time since he was thrown into this labyrinth.
In the settlements, tents like the ones that are used by nomadic tribe like Mongols called Ger was concentrated.
「And, a welcome of guys that seem to be friendly……huh」
As he had said, he could see a few men that came out of the tent approaching him while waving their hands.
Junpei shrugged his shoulder and whispered as if he spat out.
「It’s reallyーーa very poorly made story」
*Sponsored by Shin Amazake-sama.