Translator: D0dz Editor: Matty TLC: Yomigaeru
Hated by another world’s king, liked by a ghost.
On my way to school, the bus I was on got into an accident.
My vision went blank…
And all the passengers on board were summoned to another world.
In the brightly lit throne room sat a king.
Next to him, a robe wearing magician began to speak.
“Welcome, chosen ones… This world has been invaded by the Demon Lord. That is why people like you have been summoned here; I want you to defeat the demon lord with the special skills only bestowed upon the people of your world, so that you may save this world. Once you have vanquished the demon lord, the path to your original world will be revealed.” [Magician]
I replied with,
“Just how powerful is the enemy? What’s the war potential on the human side? What will we gain from this? First of all, if we’re talking 400 Arusha (silver coins), what’s its monetary value in this world? For how long can we live off of 400 arusha? Will we be getting regular remuneration? Would the pay be based on our merits? Or would it be a fixed salary? You’re telling us we will be immediately transported to the frontier stronghold with ‘magic transfer’, but isn’t that a bit weird? As we are now, not knowing anything about this world…? We don’t know about this world’s food, culture, or even basic common knowledge tied to this world, yet you wish to send us off to the front lines before we can adapt to daily life?” [Nagi]
“And, no, don’t tell us you’ll ‘invoke’ a contract that’ll return us to our original world once the demon lord is defeated. Next, you’ll say you’d be willing to give us weapons and equipment, among other things. As if we’d believe such a thing! You said we’re the chosen heroes, but it really makes me wonder just how many others like us are out there.” [Nagi]
I was expelled…
“…I’ve really done it now…” [Nagi]
Here I am at the royal capital’s plaza, already at my wit’s end.
In primary school, I once got a report card that stated, “Souma Nagi should try to read the situations he gets himself into better.”
I’m sorry, Sensei.
Although it’s been five years since I graduated, I still haven’t grown much.
I can’t help but feel troubled…
So, let’s assess the situation.
The place I’m currently standing at is the Royal Capital of a kingdom named “Leignadar”, located at the center of the Sabara Continent
This is perhaps the biggest city in the entire kingdom, and where the king of the nation resides.
That white, magnificent building out-stretched before my sight is the royal palace.
I’m in the city’s plaza, somewhat far off from the royal palace, where wide cobbled streets extend from east to west and intersect.
I am currently sitting at the base of a large tree.
Before me is a bustling district of lined-up shops and gathered people, near where the aforementioned streets met.
This is a fantasy world; therefore, things such as magic and swords exist in prevalence. There are also various fantasy races roaming about as far as the eye can see.
There are long-eared, slim elves, and short, stubby dwarves as well.
The people with animal ears are ‘Demi-humans’, I think.
Yeah, this place is just as I expected.
The problem is… what should I do from here?
The king was generous enough to supply me 400 arusha – or 400 silver coins – in the leather bag.
It would just be plain awkward to throw a summoned person out into the streets penniless and naked.
I took neither the weapon (short sword) nor the armor (leather armor).
In my possession, I have medicinal plants and 2 days worth of meals – bread and dried meat – in my backpack…
At present, these are the only things I have.
I wouldn’t hesitate to ask for more, though…
The king originally summoned us at his own convenience, so we don’t owe him anything at this point.
As for the bus incident, it turned out not to be a grave an accident as we thought; there were no casualties.
It’s not like we were saved by the king, so there’s no need to feel any obligation to him.
The other passengers cast their harsh gazes at me when I was expelled from the throne room.
And then… I was told to read the mood.
But I still don’t believe my choice was the wrong one, no matter how many times I try to reconsider.
The king’s request makes me feel really uneasy.
I was forced into unpaid part-time work over 5 times in my 3rd year of high school alone.
To start with, I possess 400 arusha.
Is that a lot? Or is that not enough?
Well, considering the gravity of the given quest, I don’t think it’s enough.
A while ago, I went around perusing the prices of the nearby cafeteria and inn.
By my calculations, 400 arusha should enable a common person to subsist for approximately 20 days.
If you blindly listen to what the king said, you may have thought it to be enough; but you wouldn’t know what standards of food and clothing would be offered to start you out, to be sent off to the front lines.
I didn’t know whether the food or lodgings would be suitable for us.
If met with dissatisfaction, the most you could do was take the 400 arusha and sort it out yourself.
And to make things worse, you wouldn’t be able to memorize the roads it took to get to the front lines since you’d be transported by magic.
Given the fact that they wanted to use magic transfer, there should be a considerable distance from here to the frontier stronghold.
The crowded streets of the royal capital give further evidence of this; its citizens wouldn’t be carefreely shopping and frolicking the streets with a demon threat looming nearby.
In other words, we couldn’t return here ourselves if we were teleported to the front line.
Just how far is it really, from the front line to the royal capital?
I don’t even know if there’s a road to and from there.
Even if you have cheat-like abilities, you may not be able to do anything about the physical distance.
You might not end the trek in good health.
Basically, we’d have no choice but to obey the rules set by our employers.
If you want money, fight the demons.
If you want to eat, fight the demons.
If you want better treatment, increase your efforts.
Perhaps I should say, there really is no choice but to fight the demon king if you want to return to your original world.
Even then, I have doubts if I could return back to my original world…
This might just be a shady job with no real purpose attached to it…
“…No, I might just be overthinking it.” [Nagi]
The first problem I should try to fix is my skills; they’re too weak.
Skills are automatically given when one is summoned to this world. However, my skills are unlikely to be useful in combat.
Besides… their levels are way too low.
What’s with this.
『 Reconstruction Ability ・ Skill Structure LV 1』
『Fencing LV 2』『Smite LV 2』『Cleaning LV 2』『Analysis LV 2』
『Foreign World Language LV 5』
And this particular ‘Special Skill’, 『Reconstruction Ability』: It’s so ambiguous..
The smite and fencing skills I understand.
For the ‘Foreign World Language’, I can use it to translate a conversation in real-time.
I can imagine the effects of the other skills just from their names, but 『Reconstruction Ability』is another matter entirely… I just can’t grasp the meaning of it…
This is my supposed special skill, right?
“『Reconstruction Ability』ー invoke”
I chant the skill and a tiny pop-up window appears before me.
Everyone near me seems to pay no heed to it.
That probably means I’m the only one who can see it.
The window showcases an array of skills.
This display seems to just be an illusion of sorts, only seen by the user.
Icon-like things are shown.
For example, the『Smite LV 1』properties:
『Smite LV 1』
Skill: 『Grant』『Powerful damage』to 『Low level monster』
The letters are also shown.
That’s about it.
“…How am I supposed to survive with only this…”
These are the reasons as to why I don’t want to go to the frontline.
(1) The skills I have are useless.
(2) Salaries will be reduced.
(3) Instead of using my skills for combat, it’d be better to use them to ensure my lifestyle.
These reasons grant me some foresight.
Since that’s the case, I should find my own means of surviving within this town.
This choice is much, much better.
I have 400 arusha.
For the time being, I can live in comfort for up to 20 days.
Until then, I should find some way to sustain myself.
Reminiscing about my original world, I think, “It’d be lucky I could return..”
Otherwise, I’m not entirely fixated on it.
The objective from here on out is to survive.
And if possible, to get 『Normal happiness』
The end goal here is to reach a point where I can live comfortably without having to work.
…I feel like nothing will change from when I lived in my original world.
“What to do..” [MC]
“I see you have received quite the interesting skill. Want to join forces?” [???]
I heard a voice..
Coming from within my own head..
Who is i– …Nobody would answer even if I asked.
This is a fantasy world, so there should be people able to do telepathy here.
It’s still not just before noon yet, the time where the plaza receives the most amount of traffic.
There’re a lot of shops lined up.
There are shops selling fruit.
Shops selling special meats wrapped with pastry.
Shops selling medicinal plants and potions.
In addition to the stalls crowding the center, there are also shops which sell weapons and armor, and shops that sell crystal balls about the size of a person’s fist.
But… among them, there’s a shop with a signboard depicting a collar and lock — just what does it sell, I wonder…
By the way, there are too many people nearby.
I wouldn’t be able to tell where the source of the voice is coming from.
No use in trying to find out who is talking.
I should concentrate on what it’s trying to say.
“…Join forces? I don’t understand.” (Nagi)
“I can offer you nothing but information. You’re a visitor, aren’t you?” [Mysterious voice]
“An aberrant human being originating from another world. I know of those types being summoned.” [Mysterious Voice]
“…I’ll hear you out. But first, who are you?” [Nagi]
“I am no single entity. I am residual thought and will not yet lost to time; a so-called ghost.” [Ghost]
A ghost, huh… The possibility doesn’t scare me at all, not in a world of sword and magic.
I’ll listen to its story, for just a bit.
“What does a ghost have to do with me?” [Nagi]
“I can tell you of this world and how to use that special skill of yours.” [Ghost]
“Why would a ghost know how to use such a skill?” [Nagi]
“A long lifespan… yes, I have lived for quite some time. On occasion, there had come visitors who carry skills with the ability to overturn this world’s rules, like yourself.” [Ghost]
“The king said something similar.” [Nagi]
“I will not tell you to fight the demon lord, however. I shall disappear in a short time. The residue that is us are unable to have any direct physical influence on the world. In order to achieve this influence, we must accompany someone and perceive their skill.” [Ghost]
The ghost let a few moments slip before speaking again.
“Let us pledge upon a ‘contract agreement’. I shall teach you how to use that skill of yours. And in return, you will use said skill to help a certain girl in need.” [Ghost]
“ A ‘contract’…?” [Nagi]
“In this world, a ‘contract’ is everything. Look to the shop selling crystal balls.” [Ghost]
I look at the direction I was indicated.
At the shop, there seems to be two men conversing.
One of the guys has a rather heavy looking leather bag.
He exchanges a handful of gold coins to the shop owner for a crystal ball.
The customer then presses it against his chest.
And then… the crystal ball phased into his chest before vanishing from sight.
The man then suddenly sprints away somewhere else, now with remarkable speed.
“It is a shop that sells ‘skills’.” [Ghost]
“Skills?!? You mean you can actually buy and sell abilities?!” [Nagi]
“Skills may only be extracted with the person’s consent. You must first know about the skill to manifest it. Most commonly, it sells for gold coins. Now, look at the shop directly next to the skill shop.” [Ghost]
“You mean the one with the collar and lock logo?” [Nagi]
“Yes, that is the shop which sells slaves.” [Ghost]
Wait a moment..
They’re selling… people?
“…I’m glad I ran away from that king when I had the chance.” [Nagi]
“Fighting until we become useless enough to be discarded, selling our skills to earn gold, and then finally going into slavery… I feel that’s how things work here.” [Nagi]
“Yes, it certainly is.” [Ghost]
Then, the ghost started to talk about the terms of the『contract』..
Apparently, a『contract』is a vow to uphold mutual promises.
Whether it be to exchange things, buying and selling.
I give you information about this, and you do this…
There is the God of Covenant in this world, and contracts are reinforced by holy bindings, for those who make a『contract』.
If one breaks the contract, he or she will suffer a tremendous headache and be unable to sleep.
…The thing about that is… the king once said, “Defeat the demon lord if you want to return to your original world.”
So that speech was… conversely, once the『contract』is in place, even if we do find the way to return home, we wouldn’t be able to actually traverse it until we’ve defeated the demon lord…?
That’s scary! As I expected, the king truly is pitch black evil!
The other people… Hmm… Well, in a situation where you’re summoned to another world, it’d be difficult to doubt the things being told to you…
Let’s pray that I somehow avoided the『contract』.
I refocused my mind as I looked at the slave shop.
It is a building with a brick wall fit with a lattice window.
I can’t see the interior from here.
“You said that I needed to save a girl… is she, by chance, in that shop?” [Nagi]
“Correct, she is indeed in there” [Ghost]
“How does she look like?” [Nagi]
“She is the most beautiful girl in the shop.” [Ghost]
“…Could you be more specific?” [Nagi]
“It is a short girl with dark brown skin. Her name is Cecyl Pharott, and she is the last remaining member of the demon race, which was destroyed by the humans.” [Ghost]
So the voice said.
“I am the collective remnants of the demon race. The entity that I am is named ‘Ashtarte’. I have assured your right to become a proper and good master. Now, will you retrieve our daughter, ‘visitor’…?” [Ashtarte]