Slowly, the [Gate of Wisdom] opened.
As for Haku, she managed to assemble her broken mind, and tried to look at the other side…
… but couldn’t.
Because, there was a clay wall on the other side of the door.
… Under it was a polite [Under Construction] poster.
Her broken mind exploded.
“… Oh, she got it right.”
“Hey, what’s with the dead end?”
“Well, there really wasn’t enough time… I-I didn’t sleep y’know? Definitely didn’t.”
‘Ah, so he slept’, Rokuko was convinced.
“To be blunt, Rokuko was able to figure it out in three seconds—… is what I thought, so I didn’t finish making it.”
“Because I thought it would be surprising…”
“It’s definitely surprising you know. Coming up to a dead end in a labyrinth… hey, after this, where should they go?”
“Since I hid three Dummy Cores in the labyrinth in addition to the pitfalls… they went past it.”
Two were in [Small Projecting Rooms] from the labyrinth, carefully constructed to be rectangular. The other hidden on the ceiling.
However, Haku-san’s group hadn’t found them since they were currently covered up by Wall Golems.
Though since a real Dungeon Core would malfunction if it was confined in the dungeon by a wall, the Wall Golems were designed to only move when he teleported with Castling.
Still, it looks like it doesn’t count as being shut away if the walls seriously isolated it. Though I don’t really understand the conclusion, using Wall Golems to surround them was no good. I don’t get it.
“””” … … … “”””
Everyone in the [White Trial] has become silent.
However, each of them looked slightly different.
Her smile had solidified.
Misha, who was the only one to answer the riddle correctly, had her face turn blue, ‘c.r.a.p, I said too much…’
Then there was the other four retainers, which included Chloe. With the indescribable smile on Haku’s face, they didn’t say anything.
“… —The enemy, Dungeon Boss room broken through! C-Core Room discovered!”
Amelia’s sudden report pushed away the hardened atmosphere.
“Eh, hold up! What about the Red Minotaur boss!? You can’t get into the Core Room without defeating the boss you know!?”
“Th—…. they filled its throat, it died!’
Imagining that horrible way to die—not that it wasn’t perfect—the rats, mere rats… the fact they defeated a boss monster.
“Ah—ahahaha, t-that’s so funny! How are rats as brutal as that!?”
“Please settle down, Dolche… Ojou-sama.”
“We haven’t lost yet…. Keep searching with our offensive forces, we must have overlooked something. Chloe, use my spear to defend the core.”
“As you command, even if it costs this life of mine…!”
As for whether that much was exaggerated for rats, no one could say.
They were shown the unthinkable and crushing defeat of a Red Minotaur by its throat being blocked. With Chloe’s very petit build, she probably wouldn’t be able to take more than a single rat.
“The enemy, still has… one hundred… good luck.”
“I still have to serve Ojou-sama, I can’t die just yet… I’m off!”
So, spear in hand, Chloe jumped out of the core. The rat swarm was just about to reach the Dungeon Core.
“Just in time huh…! Protect! [Firewall]!”
With those words, a wall of flame appeared to enclose and defend the core. The rats took a distance away.
This was Haku’s magical spear, the [Spear of Firewall]’s ability… It used the wielder’s magical power, manifesting the fire-type upper class magic [Firewall] with a single keyword.
—Furthermore, in the event it was picked up as a treasure in a dungeon, it was said to be worth 10,000,000 DP for a single one. A treasure amongst treasures.
“Phew… with this, we should have gained some time huh.”
Chloe wondered what would happen next… she expected a mass of rats to make their way through the Firewall.
When she looked, the rats were huddling together.
That was good, so long as she prepared herself, she could deal with—
[Chloe-san! Feint—behind you! There are enemies behind you! Amount, 10!]
She turned around, but there was nothing there… no, she just couldn’t see them!?
“The heck is—!?”
She searched for the enemies, but she couldn’t find them. She couldn’t see them. Shouldn’t there be ten of them!?
Weren’t they rats!?
[… —It was… touched…!]
“Haha… the heck is going on….”
She couldn’t understand. Exhausted, she undid the [Firewall].
… After the flickering flames went out, she noticed that there was [Something] transparent above the core.
It was transparent—she hadn’t seen it before, like… an insect, or something.
Finally, the Dungeon Core… well, Dummy Core, Touchdown! —Wait, Chloe jumped out of the core and put up a [Firewall].
So you can sortie from a Dummy Core… didn’t know that. Would’ve put more Golems to work if I knew it, it would’ve been an infinite hit combo of Golems coming out everywhere in the labyrinth after reviving.
Though still, this flame was troublesome.
Or rather, it was foul play. Just needed one more step. It was obviously a magic item. I want to cross-examine her 100,000 DP.
The rats were gathering up, let’s see if they can’t somehow break through it… yup.
Hmm? What’s this…
“… Ah, oi, it’s defenseless from above. Nice, that’s just right. Invoke the [Hidden Gems].”
“H-hey, I don’t get what you mean!”
She isn’t getting what I’m telling her. Drones are something from my world, like a helicopter… she wouldn’t understand something like that.
Well, I made it with transparent materials.
I’d thought about making Water Golems at first, but I didn’t think their propellers would be strong enough for them to fly well. Though since I had some empty mana potion bottles, it went smoothly when I tried putting them to use and made some with them.
It was transparent and hard to see. The rats could transport them by swallowing them, the wonderful miniaturization was a success. At most they were the size of a marble.
Weeell, this time in particular… the flickering flames made them extra hard to see!
I could make them with a single type of material, it was even a stealth-type since it was a dungeon-restricted Golem and wouldn’t need a power supply. A Drone with a skeletal frame, battery, and communications equipment with modern j.a.panese technology would have looked like a mountain. Magic is amazing.
And so, the Drones were concealed in a part of the rats’ stomachs, going in as capsules that would open in the rats.
It was my ultimate weapon, [Hidden Gem] (Stealth Drone Capsule).
… As expected, they tore their way through the rats’ stomachs. Grotesque. Sorry though, even though they all survived the suicide attacks at the Minotaur’s mouth… I won’t feel much heartache from rats.
Then, the Drones quietly made their way above the Firewall, and though they had a tough time operating for a moment there from the hot winds—they landed softly and—
* Bonus *
A short snippet from when they were in the labyrinth.
“Ku— this [Transforming Labyrinth] is annoying… ah, right! Can’t we just break through the walls to advance?”
“Wait, that’s foul play for capturing the labyrinth.”
“No, we don’t have the time otherwise so…”
“… Alright, I’ll authorize it. Go for it!”
“T-there’s communication coming in from the enemy!”
“I wonder what it is. Connect us… Oh my, Kehma-san, what is it? Certainly, breaking the labyrinth and dungeon walls shouldn’t have been in the rules.”
[Yeah, I was just going to give some good information… This labyrinth is… handmade by Rokuko, yeah… Are you fine with destroying it?]
[In truth, Rokuko helped digging the passages with the Golems and a pickax… so, this is genuinely… her first, handmade labyrinth. So… are you fine with that? Really? Would you not regret it even if she hates you for it?]
“…. Mind games are unfair!”
[It’s my maxim though… So, will you destroy it?]
“—… Of course I won’t break it!”
That communication may or may not have happened…