Day 081 ~ 090
The quality and quantity of experience points earned from yesterday's battle was good, so many of us ranked up.
The Hobgoblin Cleric Hobuji-kun's race has now changed to one called [Half Saint Lord].
He now has a small build with a height of about 170 cm and his limbs, rather than being compact, were genuinely thin and lacking muscles. He was like a beansprout. Also, black tattoos were now prominently displayed on his awfully white skin and on the back of both of his hands, while his moderately grown shoulder-length hair was somewhat silver and the color of his pupils were golden. Just like Supesei-san, a white orb was embedded in the center of his forehead, and the two small horns that were roughly 5cm long were growing next to it were his characteristic.
His physical specs seemed lower than other Lords, similar to Supesei-san, but in exchange, it appears his race excels in defensive and healing abilities.
To try it out, I had him injure and then test his healing on one of the slaves, and the healing rate was definitely incomparable to what it was before.
Then I had him activate one of his unique abilities, the Field -- I want you to imagine a thin membrane of light--, and tried hitting it. It was able to withstand 20 punches from me when I had no abilities activated.
It was a considerably solid defense. I was a bit vexed.
We had him renamed from Hobuji-kun to Seiji-kun.
Hobufu-chan, a Hobgoblin mage who liked rotten flesh, turned into a [Ghoul].
Well, since she has been enjoying the rotten flesh of the zombies I spawn, I was half-expecting this to happen, so I wasn't too surprised.
Ghoul bodies do not inherently decompose. Her hair was black and her lifeless pale skin had black tattoos, as expected, and at a glance she looked like an ordinary human girl. However, probably because she had eaten decaying flesh and has gained the ability to devour souls, somehow, an extremely dangerous aura hung around her.
And lately, she has been alternately looking between Ogakichi-kun and I, or sometimes between me and Seiji-kun while showing an ecstatic look on her face, sometimes even while drooling. What could this possibly mean. It's really creepy, and I would like to have her stop, but I don't think talking to her will have any effect.
She was renamed from Hobufu-chan to Gurufu-chan. By the way, the character for "fu" changing isn't a typo.
TL Note: The "fu" in Hobufu is the kanji 浮, meaning "float" and the "fu" in Gurufu is the character 腐, meaning "rotten"
One of the hobgoblins, Hobume-chan, became a [Dodomeki], which possesses countless eyes all over their bodies.
She now has black hair and a 160cm tall feminine figure, but, to be honest, because of the eyes covering her whole body, whether she is pretty or not will depend on personal tastes. She was clad in a white kimono-style garment from the beginning, so it didn't seem like she needed new clothes.
By the way, the white kimono-style garment is the defensive version of "bio-sword"-- a variety of "bio-armor".
Although she had turned into a species that could use black magic, because of her low physical abilities, her overall combat ability is low. But in exchange, her species seems to be highly skilled at gathering information.
I see, I see. She seems to be extremely useful in information warfare, so I'll look forward to it.
It was decided to change her name from Hobume-chan to Dodome-chan.
And the 7 hobgoblins, including the 5 that were former slaves, became ogres as expected.
Amongst the seven, two were female ogres, and their appearance was, how should I say this, terrific in various ways. I'm not sure why, but they had a strange intensity. They were about as tall as me and had black tattoos engraved on the brown skin that wrapped their muscular bodies. The sight of them letting out lively, manly laughter brought the atmosphere of elder sisters on some battlefield to mind.
At a glance, I could easily imagine them wearing camouflaged clothes, carrying large firearms and rushing through the battlefield while mass producing corpses.
All of them were renamed.
In addition, six of the kobolds became foot soldiers, and their leader, who was a foot soldier to begin with , turned into a [Samurai Kobold].
As for his appearance, he was wearing a mostly black kimono along with vermillion armguards, he had the face of an oriental man in his late thirties with dog ears and a tail attached, and he carried a longsword in a black sheath affixed to his waist.
His face and body clearly became more human-like than when he was a foot soldier, but it is terrible to see a shabby man in his late thirties with a dog tail and dog ears.
However I looked at it, I couldn't help but see it as cosplay, so I think it can't be helped that I shift my gaze at the sight of him.
And although there was something cute about him gallantly following my orders and calling me "My liege, my liege" while he had a dog's head, now that he does it with the rough appearance of a cosplay samurai, it makes me groan in various ways.
Well, let's leave the looks aside.
Earlier I just called him Foot Soldier Leader, so I wanted to call him Samurai Leader, but it seemed that the world bestowed something called a [True name] to those who exceeded a certain degree of existence.
According to this, it seemed that the Samurai Leader's [True name] was [Akikaze no Tsuji].
By the way, under normal circumstances, only idiots would tell their [True name] to other people.
TL note : Akikaze no Tsuji in english means Autumn Wind's Crossing. - Byr
The reason was that knowing or not knowing a true name has an effect on the efficacy and strength of curses, as well as the regulating force of various other techniques.
Revealing his name seemed to be part of a simple ceremony, where he pledged to serve me for his entire life. I nodded in understanding. Then I ended up having to think of a name for everyday use. I can't just use his [True name] all the time, right?
After some thinking, I decided that he would be called Akitaken. Well, his previous appearance was similar, so I may have chosen it unconsciously.
TL Note: Akitaken is a breed of dog originating from Japan. super kawaii.
Well, since he was happy with it, it wasn't a problem.
I handed out everyone's congratulatory gifts.
Now, let's talk about the former slave troops.
More than half of them decided to return to their home towns, but they didn't have the travelling expenses to make the trip in their current situation.
So I gave them small jobs, like felling trees to make an external training ground or leveling the ground of the cave. I'll use the food, cooking utensils and money we looted from the human army to pay them for the amount of work they do. By the way, although they were deserters, they already had their own weapons, so this was not included in their salary.
None of them are incompetent humans, so I think they'll be able to save up enough money in five or six days. Since we want them to leave as soon as possible, their hourly wage is unusually high.
For that reason, there isn't much to say about the group that decided to go home.
There is more to say about those who decided to stay, in other words, the 50 who decided to join our mercenary troop ≪Parabellum≫. There were various reasons for joining; they didn't have a home to return to although they were freed, having been slaves their whole lives made them lose their purpose of living, they wanted to continue living in a blood boiling, flesh moving battlefield, or they simply wouldn't feel satisfied until they repaid the favor.
Here's a rough classification and count of the species:
Weretigers : 2.
To be honest, these were all species that are stronger than hobgoblins, the majority of our current members. The Lords, which we didn't have yet, and the equally strong Dragonewts were especially powerful.
I personally didn't mind letting all of them join, but having this many join at once could have many adverse effects. Leaving me aside, I expect the rest will not approve.
Fundamentally, for us, the strongest are always right.
This is because I had set our tribe up so they learned to obey the strong.
Leaving aside the fact that I, being of the same species, rose to the top, if a bunch of guys you didn't even know suddenly joined, snatched away your position, and stood above you, dissatisfaction would accumulate, no matter what.
If it were me, I wouldn't be able to endure it.
Most of the hobgoblins would probably be able to win against the red caps, lizardmen, centaurs and dwarves; but, aside from a select few, they likely wouldn't stand a chance against any of the rest. Hence, if I just let them join without a second thought it'd completely change the upper chain of command.
The chance of the worst case scenario of the group splitting internally would be very high. Or rather, it would be more or less a certainty.
I already trained them for so long, so it would be somewhat wasteful. No, actually, if I were to have expectations in the future, maintaining the hobgoblins was essential.
Although I had various methods to keep guys from defecting, as I said before, it's much easier for me if everyone moved according to their own free will.
Therefore, these 50 with their lower priority will get a probationary period, where they will have the lowest rank and do odd jobs until they gain my trust. They will have a rank lower than the lowest ranked goblins, and they will be treated like trainees.
Having decided on that, dissatisfaction now rose among the former slaves.
Well, it was obvious that this would happen and since it's troublesome to have everyone speaking all at once, if I sum it up and skip to the conclusion, they started saying that "they will take command".
Among those yelling were the two direct-combat type Lords and ten dragonewts, including the halfs. There was also one of the Orrorin -- looking like a boss-type with his gorilla-like hairy, muscular body -- and the Dhampir; a total of 14 names.
I thought that the Weretigers with their tiger heads and the Dullahan, who was carrying his head under his arm, would also raise objections, but they said "We can't repay the good we received with evil". It seemed that they truly had the personalities of warriors.
Since they were easy to deal with, I think I will treat them a bit favorably. Although it's just as second-class soldiers amongst the trainees.
Now, about the 14 who blurted out "We will take command", for the time being I decided to teach them their place.
First I fought with both Lords at the same time.
Since they both had much higher specs than me, there was no unwillingness on their side. Just like with Rusty Iron Knight, I didn't give them any enchantments.
As for the reason, leaving aside the fact that their abilities as a [Gale Lord]and a [Flame Lord] were extremely compatible, they were the cockiest amongst the 14.
They had quite happily yelled that I was of a lower race of ogres than them, so I was feeling like crushing not only their pride but a few other things as well.
I only heard this later, but I apparently had a pretty eerie smile on my face at the time.
The result was along the lines of both of them barely surviving and rolling around.
It took around five minutes. After two minutes had passed, they released the power of their orbs, and the Gale Lord equipped emerald-armored long boots wrapped in wind while the Flame Lord equipped a flamberge that spewed ruby flames.
However, I also started using abilities such as my threads and poison, sealed their movements, and eventually used one of the silver arm's abilities [Arm Blast] to crush both of their armaments, so it finished without me receiving any significant damage.
I was able to confirm through this fight that when you broke equipment that appeared through an orb's power, the orb on the real body would crack and you wouldn't be able to use its abilities for a while. Also, you wouldn't be able to move for a while due to the recoil. Since both of these effects would naturally disappear with time, I wasn't worried about it.
For the time being I had Seiji-kun, who finally had work to do, heal them.
The four Dragonewts were next.
The Halfs, after watching how the two Lords, who were clearly stronger than them, were beaten to a pulp, had a change of mind. It was too easy. By the way, the easiest way to tell apart a Dragonewt from a Lizardman was to see if they looked more human or more reptile.
Leaving that aside.
All four of them appeared to be Thunder Dragonewts, to be exact.
It wasn't that they could move at the speed of lightning when clad in thunder, but they could generate thunder, and, in addition to the incredible physical abilities of Dragonewts, they could use [Thunder Breath], a kind of [Breath] that could only be handled by dragon-types. There was no doubt that they were a plenty powerful species.
But, as none of that was a problem for me, I took on all four of them at the same time.
It was even easier than defeating the two Lords.
The reason was that, because I had already obtained [Electric Damage Nullification], none of their attacks were able to hit me. No matter how many Lightning Breaths were launched or Lightning Spears were lobbed at me, I nullified them all. Before you could tell if the lightning hit me or not, it all dissipated.
I nullified their greatest ability [Lightning]. Even so, that didn't mean their excellent physical abilities were gone. If they had decent combat abilities, there may have been a chance of them killing me, but they had probably never given any thought to the power they were born with.
Their skills were generally poor so they were no match for me, with my many abilities lending me a body exceeding that of the dragonewts in physical strength.
Let me add that, like the Orbs of the Lords, Dragonewts had something called a Sphere with similar abilities, but it was so frail that it wasn't that significant.
I thought of having Seiji-kun heal again, but in order to give the other members of the medical squad some hands on experience as well, I passed this opportunity on to them.
Then, let's talk about the Monkey Boss. After my fight with the Dragonewts, the moment I finished giving instructions to Seiji-kun and the others, he launched a surprise attack on my back, which would normally be a blind spot.
I detected it with [Intuition], so I could have easily avoided it, but since this surprise attack was nearly perfect, I decided to receive the blow. His method of hiding his presence, the way he discerned the moment to attack, his footwork, and the efficient use of his body to hit me, just through the overall act, I could see through the extent of the Monkey Boss' power.
By racial standards, he was weaker than the Lords, but based on the battle skills he had consequently obtained, the Monkey Boss could be proud of the pretty high level he had amongst the 50 applicants.
A rock-smashing blow hit me in the side, and I was smashed against the rock wall. Seeing this, the Monkey Boss started beating his chest. For a moment, only that sound was resounding in the area. I could have just gotten up without problem, but as I had received a surprise attack, I, letting my mischievous side get the better of me, also decided to set up a surprise attack, so I watched the situation for a while.
Just as the Monkey Boss started to yell "From now on, I'm the boss here!", I casually stepped out of the stone wall. I then returned the exact same surprise attack from behind him.
Since he probably couldn't detect my attack, my fist sank into his defenseless flank, and with the sound of bones crushing, the Monkey Boss was sent flying into the stone wall, just like me. When I checked on whether he had survived, he was just barely alive. Hm, he's unexpectedly sturdy.
Since the time frame for healing the Monkey Boss was limited, I entrusted it to Seiji-kun
As for the remaining Dhampir, I didn't go easy on him, since he was trying to seduce Dhammi-chan while he was waiting. The vitality of vampire-types are usually high so it should be fine as long as I didn't go too far. That's how it is.
He activated [Eyes of Bewitchment] as soon as we started but the effect was cut in half since we were of the same gender and besides, a bewitchment of this guy's level wouldn't have effected me anyways.
I finished the fight by pinning down his limbs with knives I created through [Equipment Materialization] and hit him until his internal organs were on the verge of rupturing.
I heard that most of his injuries would heal if he drank blood, so I let him drink some of mine.
Personally, I was only thinking about having one of my clones in his body, but it seems my blood is considerably tasty. From the moment he drank one drop of my blood, he showed an ecstatic expression and his red eyes blazed brightly.
It probably had something to do with my [Secret Medicine Blood] ability
He only drank one full sake cup's worth of blood, but when he was done he exclaimed: " Ooh, my dear beloved~" and tried to kiss my hand, so I seriously pulled away. I think that even reflexively knocking him off his feet would be a normal reaction. He seemed to be happy to have been hit, but I'll pretend that I imagined it. Since it would only make me feel disgusted, I decided not to get too deeply involved with him.
Then, I attached the pre-made cuffs to the newcomers, who will be treated as underlings, and started with the usual training.
All of them had a decent level, so I tried something a little harder than usual.
And in the afternoon, I had the five Dwarves work with Blacksmith-san and others.
If you look at forging abilities, Dwarves are a race that can compete for first or second place. They had great physical strength, so they would be even useful as soldiers in the front lines, but for me, it would be more convenient to have them concentrate on smithing.
Since the forging skill of Blacksmith-san and the others were lower, I instructed them to learn from the dwarves and I appointed the most skilled Dwarf as the Head Blacksmith. Blacksmith-san the the others seemed a bit uneasy about dealing with the proud, stubborn, father-like presence of the Dwarves, but I'm sure that time will solve this matter.
I'm already looking forward to seeing what kind of products the Dwarves can make out of Mithril.
As for the the afternoon training, I had the complaining newbies do Ogakichi-kun's daily training.
The training of our "battle junkie" Ogakichi-kun started with taking on ten Black Skeletons at the same time. There were no breaks until you defeated them, and even if you cleared that level, the amount of Black Skeletons kept increasing by ten every time a group was cleared, so it was very harsh.
For now, so that they don't die, I told them to keep going until they couldn't stand any longer.
Since I had a little time to spare now, I decided to try and use [Synthesis].
From the start, I had been scared of synthesizing abilities, so I decided to try and use [Synthesis] to combine the orbs and spheres, that I had my clones retrieve from the dead Lords and Dragonewts during the battle yesterday, with my own body.
I could've collected all of the orbs and spheres from the corpses if I had wanted to, but I only gathered ten.
The reason was to minimize that damage dealt to the human army's side, even if only by a little bit. If they were to keep receiving casualties, there's a possibility that they will be driven to a situation where retreat would not be an option.
Orbs and spheres can be exchanged for extremely high sums of money and they can be turned into strong magic items. If they have that many, I'm sure they could reduce the sustained damage by some extent. It seems that they have been collecting them until now so this might be an old story, but it's logical that having them is better than nothing.
Well, for the time being, I synthesized two emerald orbs with both of my knees.
The outcome was a success.
When I released the power of the Gale Lord's Orbs, a pair of splendid boots appeared, like a deluxe edition of the Long Boots I had seen before. There were no compatibility issues with my body. I can also use the ability without any problems.
Taking this as a good sign, I devoted myself to different kinds of Synthesis.
v2 Taking advantage of this fortunate outcome, I endeavored in different way of using [Synthesis]
I will state what I ascertained through using synthesis yesterday.
Synthesis was extremely exhausting. Not physically, but mentally.
After synthesizing all ten orbs and spheres with my body, when I synthesized [Sunlight Vulnerability]and[Light Damage Vulnerability], which I wouldn't have minded losing, I lost all motivation to continue synthesizing due to mental fatigue.
As long as I wanted to, there was nothing I couldn't do, but in this state where I lacked concentration, I could make an irreparable mistake if i continued, so I stopped at my very limit. Therefore, I am still unsure about what would happen if I synthesized beyond my limits. Well, I think that somethings are better off remaining unknown, so I have no desire to find out.
By the way, the ability I gained through this synthesis was [Extreme Sunlight Damage Vulnerability]. As a test, while this ability was activated, I exposed my fingertip to the sunlight, but I never expected it to catch on fire.
Yeah, spontaneous body combustion is no joke. Sealing confirmed.
Now, regarding the two abilities I had synthesized, they were still present. However, their effects were not manifested when I activated them. With this, I affirmed that synthesized abilities could not be re-acquired.
It seems I'll need to be very careful when synthesizing from now on.
Today, I decided to leave the training of our new recruits to Ogakichi-kun again.
As for me, I put some hard work into making the hot springs, the training grounds, and the residential area more comfortable with Asue-chan and the others.
In addition to the skeletons, which didn't need breaks, we had 62 male slaves and part-time workers, so it was possible to finish a lot of work at once.
Today we were working on improving our residential area, creating simple beds, improving our clothes, leveling the land of the outside training ground, making a wooden wall to block enemies who might try to invade our home, and perfecting the hot spring establishment to haul in more money from the elves.
Just like how we used to be, the elves had only experienced bathing in cold water, and judging from the reactions of the elves, I think the hot spring will be a hit.
I've been thinking of advertising this by inviting the father elf sometime in order to spread rumors
Today's synthesis results.
[Dragon Scale Formation] + [Scale Armor Formation] = [Dragon Scale Armor Formation]
[Prediction] + [Enlarged Field Vision] = [Instantaneous Sight]
[Pump-up] + [Lord of the Mountain's Tenacious Muscle] + [Arm Strength Reinforcement] + [Leg Power Reinforcement] + [Jumping Power Reinforcement] = [Black Ogre's Tenacious Body]
[Intimidating Roar] + [Scaled Horse's Neigh] = [Black Ogre's Roar]
[Snake's Evil Eye] + [Intimidating Glare] = [Black Ogre's Evil Eye]
[Lesser Damage Reduction] + [Lesser Magic Damage Reduction] = [Lesser Physical and Magical Damage Reduction]
[Hinder Regeneration] + [Cursed Wounds] = [Festering Cursed Wounds]
Using synthesis is quite tiring, so this is all for today.
Without delay, I decided to try using my synthesized abilities during the morning training.
To confirm the results quickly, I went up against 23 of our new recruits at the same time. By the way, I chose these members because they could easily be replaced.
The race and count of newcomers were as follows
Half lords: 5
Maybe because they came from the same battlefield, the synergy of our newcomers was pretty decent. But even then, their lack of skill was still obvious. Their movements were fast, but monotonic and were too wasteful, so I could easily predict their next move. Even so, I did sustain some damage, but it was only an amount that I could heal immediately by using my recovery abilities.
We continued sparring until lunch without a break. It was a pretty nice training.
It's just that I discovered that it was a pain to handle [Black Ogre's Tenacious Body], which I created by synthesizing five abilities. It was simply too strong. It was way too dangerous to use this in practice.
I didn't expect that even the troll, who had the strongest defensive strength, would be knocked down in just one hit.
And in the afternoon, I worked on improving our residential area again.
The preparations for the hot spring is progressing steadily. The war between the humans and the elves seems to be slowly nearing its end, so once it's done, I plan on switching to a strategy that would use the human slaves once it's over.
In the morning I woke up reacting to someone's voice calling me.
Getting up from the bed in my birthday suit and stepping out of the room everyone was sleeping in, I saw a single warhammer made out of an purified alloy which included mithril, elemental stones, and steel, and was elaborately decorated and yet, still could be used on a battlefield, carried by the Dwarves.
The warhammer was handed to me by the head Dwarf.
Eh, what's this. When I inquired with my head tilted to one side, I was told that dwarves apparently have a custom of gifting self-made warhammers as a sign of friendship and gratitude. And the better the quality of the war hammer was, the stronger were the feelings.
Nodding in understanding and thinking that I usually only wield long weapons, since it looked so skilfully made, I decided to accept it gratefully.
Nevertheless, even though we could hold a conversation, if it's with races like dwarves whose lingual abilities I don't yet possess, there are some dialects mixed in that I don't understand, making it troublesome.
Today, after morning practice, I wandered around the forest alone.
The forest no longer held any existence which could be regarded as my enemy, so I felt a little lonely.
Although I had to always be careful of my surroundings when I had just been born, now I need to conceal my presence just so that the creatures in my surrounding won't all run away. It's not as if that many days have passed since then, but I felt nostalgic thinking back on those days filled with danger.
After about ten minutes of walking, I arrived at Dryad-san's place, whom I had met earlier. I've had many conversation with her through my clones since then, but I had a matter to attend to today, so I came in person.
Dryad-san was still as beautiful as ever. I was immediately seduced by her charm, but we finished our business first, and after that we spent some time together.
TL Note : Dryad-san R2 FIGHT!. ROU IS WINNER! or is he?
After that, I returned while gathering many of the ingredients that Dryad-san had told me about, and the night was a hot night in many ways.
Some of the female human's bellies were starting to swell, I wonder who will be giving birth first.
I'm looking forward to it.
To increase our self-sustenance in food, I decided to cultivate a field.
I used the seeds I had Dryad-san make for me with magic and some that I picked up in the forest. Although the seeds Dryad-san made seem to be more efficient than their natural counterparts in various ways, I decided to attempt on improving their growth strength, effects and flavors even further by using Elemental Stones.
For that reason, I only did basic training today and worked with everyone on landscaping the residential area and such. I put Redhead and some others from the former supply unit who had agriculture related [Jobs] in charge and I had everyone work according to their instructions.
I worked up a good sweat today.
There's nothing wrong with some healthy labor.
Today's synthesis results:
[Scale Armor Drive] + [Dragon Scale Armor Formation] = [Solid Dragon Scale Armor]
[Slashing Power Reinforcement] + [Piercing Power Reinforcement] = [Slashing and Piercing Reinforcement]
[Quick Thinking] + [Parallel Thinking] = [Quick, Parallel Thinking]
In the morning, some members of the going home group, who had saved up enough money since they didn't have to travel too far, went home.
I had already taken counter-measures to prevent information from leaking, and I had forbidden them from talking of this place, so whether they would live in peace or not depended on their own sincerity.
Then, after saying my farewells, I separated the 36 nobles from the male slaves and decided to return them to their families. However, I wasn't returning them out of goodwill. Since the human army, which had already retreated to the plains, seemed to be withdrawing completely, I took advantage of this opportunity and by attaching my clones and brainwashing them with Dhammi-chan's [Eye of Bewitchment], I turned them into "weeds" for gathering information from within the Empire and the Kingdom; in other words, I will use them as spies.
I didn't really have any intentions of being hostile towards either of the countries, but my knowledge of this world is meagre and my connections with others is limited. It would be safest if I took every measure that I possibly could in case my main plan, which I was already pursuing, failed.
After this event finished, we started the morning training as usual.
By noon, the human army had completely finished its withdrawal, and after I confirmed that the weeds had successfully joined them, I used the communication equipment to contact Father Elf.
We finished our talk about the end of our contract, confirmed our final reward, and after chatting for a while, it was decided that I would participate in the [Soul Banquet] that was being held in the Elf village that night.
The [Soul Banquet] was some kind of ceremony held by the Elf tribe, where everyone came together to send off the dead, so that they did not stay in the present world because of lingering feelings for their family, friends, or loved ones and turn into Ghosts or Undead.
Then in the evening, leaving the newcomers and my clones behind, we headed towards the Elf village bearing gifts.
This time, I took along the Elves, whose number had been reduced to 13. I didn't intend on being so harsh that I would prevent them from participating in mourning their acquaintances. Since I changed their outward appearance with [Concealment], I didn't have to worry so much about their true identities being exposed.
By the time we arrived at the Elf Village, the banquet had already begun.
Ignoring the stares filled with all sorts of emotions mixed together that I could feel even before I entered the venue, I presented the meat of several Bicorns to Father Elf, who came out to greet us.
I took the opportunity to have him guarantee the safety of Redhead and the others, who were standing next to me and curiously looking around. I originally had my doubts about bringing humans, but since they wished for it so strongly, I brought them along.
However, I had Rusty Iron Knight and Female Knight stay at home.
After exchanging our greetings, I told everyone to go mingle with the Elves and had them spread out. Even then, only a few of them actually tried holding a conversation with the Elves, and most of them just gathered in a corner and sampled the food.
I, on the other hand, had a great time because Daughter Elf-san was pouring elf sake for me.
At the end of the banquet, a spectacle broke out, where countless white sphere-like things fluttered around the huge bonfire in the center of the venue and ascended to the sky.
According to Father Elf, the lights were the souls of the departed who went back to heaven. The hobgoblin shaman said that the spirits were indeed gone, so I suppose it was true.
Again, I offered a silent prayer for a while.
About the mining operation that Asue-chan was leading; it met its end as we excavated two huge elemental stones.
We had exhausted the elemental stones. Originally, the reason why we could harvest such a wide variety of elemental stones was because the dungeon of Velvet, whom the elemental spirits were (apparently) fond of, was located here. After Velvet's death, the spirits gathered because of the presence of Returner, the warden of the dungeon, and this resulted in all kinds of elemental stones being generated.
However, Returner had already passed away.
Consequently, the spirits lost their reason to stop by at the dungeon, and if we dug up all of the elemental stones that were already here, no new ones would generate, so this was obviously the end.
However, we had already secured more than enough, so I should stop myself from being too greedy.
We have benefitted a terrific amount because of Velvet's blessing, and so, with feelings of gratitude, I offered prayers to the two huge elemental stones.
After that, I ate the elemental stones, of course. Because I had never eaten elemental stones like these before.
[Ability [Photon Ruler] Learning complete]
[Ability [Photon Resistance] Learning complete]
[Ability [Gravity Law] Learning complete]
[Ability [Darkness Resistance] Learning complete]
The two elemental stones I ate --The elemental stone of Light and the elemental stone of Darkness-- were top quality stones that surpassed every elemental stone we had ever mined in purity, size and beauty. I was a bit puzzled by the fact that I had gained gravity manipulation from the elemental stone of Darkness, but if you thought of black holes and such, it wasn't necessarily wrong. Besides, it was much easier to handle if you thought of it as [Gravity], rather than some vague concept like [Darkness], so I had no complaints. The application would be more effective, too.
After that, I decided to advance our preparations for venturing outside. I had made a promise to take Redhead and the others to the city, so leaving aside the matter of them staying by my side or not, we needed to secure a vehicle, like a carriage.
We could theoretically use our pets, but it would be a waste to not use my tireless pawns. I might as well utilize them.
First, I used [Lesser Undead Generation] to mass-produce Black Skeletons.
→ After gathering their bones, I started constructing a vehicle by connecting the bones with [Bone Binding].
→ As for the appearance of the finished product, it looked like a skeletal centipede that had a luggage rack on its back.
→ Using the huge amount of clones that I had created, I coated the whole thing.
By the time I finished, it was already night.
After I ate dinner, I called out Redhead, Blacksmith-san, the sisters and Alchemist-san to talk about our departure in three days.
They asked me whether I was chasing them out, but I explained that this was just to keep the first promise I had made to them, and also because I wanted to advertize some jobs. I told them that they had until the last minute to decide if they wanted to come along or not.
We talked until late into the night.
We finished the hot spring for guests. The first stage of the interior decoration in the cave was completed.
Also, the rest of the going home group departed today.
Our number dropped in one go, but there was no problem if you just thought of it as everything returning to normal.
I complete various tasks, such as training and preparing preserved food for when we ventured out.
Hm, today was a pretty peaceful day without any big events.
It had been decided that we would create five groups and move out tomorrow.
There were various reasons, like accumulating experiences and gathering information. However, the biggest reason was that the efficiency of gaining experience in this forest had gotten worse.
Of course, because some would stay behind, I didn't have to worry about some other race taking over our home.
Each group had exactly 10 members, but without counting pets, so, depending on the number of pet owners, the number could vary slightly.
The group members are as follows:
The first group is me, Dhammi-chan, Redhead and the four girls, and the three Lords.
The second group is Ogakichi-kun, Asue-chan, one Hobgoblin Cleric, three humans, and four foot soldier Kobolds.
The third group is Burasato-san, Supesei-san, three Elves, one Human, three Hobgoblins, and one Hobgoblin Cleric.
The fourth group is two Ogres, one Hobgoblin Mage, two Weretigers, two Dragonewts and three Humans.
The fifth group is Dodome-chan, four Ogres, two Humans, one Ninja Kobold, and one Centaur.
The reason why there were humans in every group was to avoid any pointless conflicts and to do chores. Also, I included a few of our recruits, but I had no specific reason for that. If pressed, I would say that I did it on a whim.
However, the nominated recruits seemed to have misunderstood this as an official enrollment exam, but since it seemed like they would tackle this task earnestly, I purposefully didn't correct them.
Since Seiji-kun, Gurufu-chan, Rusty Iron Knight and Female Knight were staying behind, I intended to quickly finish my work, so I could take them outside as well.
Well, a new generation may have been born by then.
Well then, leaving that aside. Today, on the day before our departure, I invited Father Elf and his party to join me in the hot spring. The hot spring for guests wasn't inside the cave, but was located at a slightly distant place. This was because, in addition to viewing this from a defensive standpoint, this way it was also easier to enter it from the outside.
Father Elf's response was superb. Since it seemed like he enjoyed it quite a lot, I asked him to advertise it. Of course, I explained the rules and that there was a payment system, and I entertained him with some light food. Thanks to the Sisters, there were now Goblins who could be called Goblin Cooks, so I would say that the food was delicious.
His group was laughing with satisfied looks on their faces, and since they brought a barrel of Elf sake, we transitioned into a party. Fortunately, we had had an external training ground, so we gathered around a campfire and danced to our heart's content --of course, I was in charge of the music-- and let the mood rise.
As the days passed, the recruits seemed to be growing comfortable little by little, and so I witnessed them blending in with the members and dancing together. This is a good development.
While observing that scene, I exchanged drinks with Father Elf.
Yeah, it sure is nice to have a drinking buddy.
It was finally the day of our departure.
The already produced Black Skeletons, combined with the stockpile, were numerous, so there was no problem from a self-defense aspect, and I planned on having the construction operation continued in my absence.
I planned on deepening our relationship with the Elves while making a profit by using things like the hot springs. Well, the hot spring business was just to kill time, or rather, mainly just a hobby, but it should suffice.
Let me leave aside trifling details about our home. All preparations were already complete.
Today, for the first time, we left the forest for real.
When we came out of the forest, the windy meadow welcomed us.
My thoughts rushed towards the unknown outside world.
For the time being, our goal was to reach the fortress city of ≪Trient≫.
Chapter 1, Forest of Birth, Black Beast Saga, complete.
After the small talk, the story continues in
Chapter 2, Beautiful Banquet, Malicious Princess Saga.
[List of our forces after the first chapter]
Official and Unofficial members are indicated.
[Demon-type] Official Members
Half Lord related: 
Ogre Mage: 
Hobgoblin Mage: 
Hobgoblin cleric: 
Hob Goblin Shaman: 
[Demon-type] Former Slave Members
Lords:  Unofficial
Half lords:  Unofficial
Dhampir:  Unofficial
Ogre:  Unofficial
Troll:  Unofficial
Redcap:  Unofficial
Human: Female , male  Official
Prisoners:  Official
Warrior Kobold:  Official
Footsoldier Kobold:  Official
Ninja Kobold:  Official
Kobold:  Official
Elderly kobold:  Official
Dragonewts:  Unofficial
Half-dragonewts:  Unofficial
Lizardman:  Unofficial
Dwarf:  Unofficial
Elf:  Official
Orrorin:  Unofficial
Weretiger:  Unofficial
Centaur:  Unofficial
Triple horned horse:  Official
Hind bear:  Official
Demon bear:  Official
Orthos:  Official
Black Wolf:  Official