"Dammit, too stronk"
"Show your guts as rank A adventurers!"
In one of towers close by Saga Empire, a group of adventurers are engaging in a fierce battle against a six-meter tall <> on the middle layer.
"Alright! My blade got through!"
"Burn the wound! Don't let it regenerate!"
The leader commanded his party to burn the spot where the great sword wounded the Demi Troll.
Burning wounds that continuously give bleeding damage would have been a foolish act were they up against normal monsters, however it's absolutely necessary against a DemiTroll Vanguard who possesses powerful regenerative abilities.
"Don't carelessly get too close! Trolls are physically even stronger than Ogres!"
The leader warned the young adventurer who was blown away.
"This gonna be a loong fight 'innit."
The leader had a tired look on his face as the fight alternated between offense and defense.
Then, a clear voice carried by winds reached his ears.
『Adventurer-san, we will be passing through soon. Please don't be surprised.』
"Who is this?"
『We are attendants of Hero Nanashi, Silver Knights.』
A group of people in silver armors showed up soundlessly at the opposite end of the hall.
Several adventurers were panicking at the muted, or rather silent entrance of the armored group, but the leader who had been informed beforehand shouted at them, "Don't panic, they're not enemy", and managed to stop the battlefront from falling into chaos.
"Leader, aren't those."
"Yeah, the folks who saved us that time."
Looks like they've seen the Silver Knights in action before.
The Silver Knights swiftly passed through the verge of battlefield between adventurers and DemiTroll Vanguard.
"Oh crap. --A troll is lurking nearby!"
The leader shouted to give a warning about a sly DemiTroll Vanguard hiding in the direction where the Silver Knights were going.
The composite magic of wind and lightning magic Silver Knight Air, Zena Marientail, invoked blew away the DemiTroll Vanguard's barrier and paralyzed its body.
Silver Knight Kungfu, Karina Muno flew off while leaving a blue trail of light behind and landed a kick on the body of the still DemiTroll Vanguard.
The DemiTroll Vanguard who was blown backward in a く posture was then hit by a grandiose uppercut from crouching position, sending it upward.
An astringent voice could be heard inside Karina's helmet.
Blue light wrapped Karina's body, flashes of lights emitted out of gaps on her armor.
"Kungfu Aeraid Dance"
Lady Karina jumped up with a powerful kick on ground, then she rapidly struck the mid-air Demitroll from all directions.
This attack that makes full use of Flickering Motion at ultra high speed using empty air as footholds give off impression like she's been split into multiple clones of herself.
Karina struck a pose as she declared that in front of the Demitroll Vanguard that had crashed down with a loud bang.
At the same time, red lights leaked out of the troll's body, then piece of meat started flying everywhere a second after a sound of explosion.
The Magic Blade Wedges that were driven inside the demitroll's body along with the strikes must have gone past critical point and exploded.
The pieces of meat and blood dirtied the surroundings, but Karina herself was spared of any thanks to the scaly small light shields [<>] had produced to protect her.
Before long, those pieces of meat and blood vanished into mist.
"It appears that a magic core was the only drop this time desuwa."
"Good work, Kungfu."
After defeating the DemiTroll Vanguard, the Silver Knights quietly left the open space as if nothing happened.
"Are you fo' real..."
"Finishing off the monster we desperately fought off in an instant..."
"Oy, don't look away you! We're fighting here! Didja have a death wish or sumthin'?!"
The leader rebuked his party members who were agape at the vast difference in strength.
『Is she a cheating kid?』
『She must be a cheating kid.』
Pink-haired little girls giggled, 'kusu kusu' in the depth of darkness.
Finding new prey, sadistic smiles floated on their childish faces.
"We brought candies with us."
"Thank you very much. With this there will be less people making rackets at the candy-selling area."
When Lulu and Satou in disguise dropped by to deliver stocks of candies, Tifaliza smiled showing her intellectual beauty and led the way to the warehouse.
"Whoa so many of 'em ssune."
At the warehouse, Lulu took boxes of candy out of Storage Bag and piled them up together with Nell who had joined them there.
These candies are not drop items, but are made by Lulu and Satou.
After reports from Royal Research Institute regarding possible addictive effects found in tower-dropped candies, they decided to sell coffee candy with adjusted amount of caffeine and all kinds of Soda-flavored candies at Echigoya Firm.
And to deal with reports about an increase of irritated people, Satou and the girls have started a trial production of calcium-added preserved foods and salted candy, which they also delivered here as samples.
"This should suffice for half a year."
"Naw, you're underestimating it ssuyo, Tifa-san. I'd say it'd be all gone in three months, or even two at the latest ssuyo."
Satou and Lulu looked at each others when they heard Tifaliza and Nell's conversation.
As according to their calculations, it should have been enough for one year.
"Yes if we calculate from sales so far and the number of customers who frequently check for stock, that much is about correct."
Satou made a promise to mass produce another batch after hearing Tifaliza's estimation.
"Oh right, here you go."
Signaled by Satou, Lulu handed over the recipes for all kinds of candies.
"Is it really alright for us to have the recipes as well?"
"The more people we can hire if Echigoya can make well-selling goods, right?"
"We're truly grateful for your consideration."
Even though there have been an influx of people who stopped working to stay in the towers, many more people are still seeking employment.
After confirming that Echigoya Firm will continue buying candies, Satou went to the office room on topmost floor.
Lulu had gone to kitchen in order to instruct Echigoya Firm's chefs how to make candies.
"Kuro-sama, thank you for waiting."
Manager Elterina had just come back from the royal castle.
"I have reported the matter from last time to His Majesty."
"Here are documents shared by the kingdom."
Incidents of [Monsters that shouldn't have spawned on that floor appearing] have also occurred in purple towers all over the world, and there are several reports about [Sightings of pink-haired little girls] and [Hearing voices of children] accompanying those incidents.
"So other locations outside Shiga Kingdom have had similar sightings as well--Hm?"
Satou skimmed over several pieces of documents.
"Sightings on the same day and between distant countries huh..."
"Sightings of little girls is it."
Satou affirmed Manager's question.
Satou ponders whether those little girls could appear and disappear everywhere at will, or there are a lot of them.
"Is even Kuro-sama's search unable to find them?"
Satou and Tama's golden pair had gone on an investigation right after they heard about these pink-haired little girls, however, they haven't found any trace of them even after several days.
"Kuro-sama, there are reports of little girls' sightings without irregular monsters spawning."
"This and that are wrong--"
The ones that Satou pointed out--were sightings of something with pink-colored mantle and clothing.
Those are just sightings of his companions, Cat Ninja Tama and her partner, Dog Hero Pochi when they were exploring the towers.
"--This one is right on the money."
It's not clear whether no irregular monsters appeared or some strong individuals who happened to pass by defeated those monsters, there is no way to be sure since you can only rely on adventurers' testimonies in towers where dead monster left no body behind.
"There's no common point between the victims. Doesn't seem like someone are purposely targeting them..."
"Perhaps there is a commonality not written in this reports. Should we investigate further on the victims?"
Satou replied to the manager with, "If you could please."
"Zena has returned. Everyone, prepare for combat--"
The silver members who have arrived at upper layer of the tower has made an open space as their base of operation for hunting monsters.
They are accompanied by eight Orichalcum golems furnished with great shields.
"There are four enemies! One Manticore, three lions."
Zena shouted out loud as she ran in the open space.
Behind her, a gigantic Manticore Vanguard along with three Airwalk Lion Vanguards were chasing after her.
The former is a monster with the head of an old man, the body of a lion and the wings of a bat, a powerful monster that employs advanced level ice and wind magic. The latter are lions that gallop in the air, specializing in three-dimensional assaults by making use of momentous barrier deployments with their roars and Flickering Motion.
"Golem 3 to golem 8, stop the Airwalk Lion Vanguards from moving!"
Six Orichalcum Golems brandishing great shields and maces took positions before the Airwalk Lion Vanguards.
The manticore's old man face roared, then several ice spears manifested around it before zooming toward the silver members.
Sera activated her delayed chanted holy spell, easily guarding against the ice spears and repulsing the Manticore's charge.
There, Zena invoked a composite spell, tearing apart the Manticore's barrier.
Karina ran up in the sky and unleashed her finisher on the base of Manticore's wings from above, depriving it of its flight ability.
The two golems guarding the princess charged in after Karina, and ripped the manticore's wings apart.
"We're done chanting."
Once Zena and Sera were done chanting, the princess gave the order for Karina and the golems to fall back.
"...■ Sacred Impact"
"...■ Divine Thunder Field"
Sacred strike of holy magic and ranged thunder attack of lightning magic flattened the Manticore.
Following Raka's advices as he had seen through Manticore's remaining health, Karina finished it off by using the combo she used to defeat <> that was chained up to super finisher.
There were people who were lurking from a distance while observing the manticore that exploded into pieces of meat.
『What, is that?』
『Sure we wanna mess with those? Aren't those bad news?』
『Super bad news.』
It's the pink-haired little girls.
『Think they're heroes?』
『You mean, like, Pari-tan's heroes?』
『That savage rack must be one right?』
A pink-haired little girl with stern look on her face clapped her hands together to gather the other little girls' attention.
『This is no time to be scared, it's punishment time! Do it right or milord won't praise us!』
『I dun wanna that~』
『I wanna get praised, hate no praises.』
The little girls moved on to capture high-level monsters.
They had their eyes set upon a Demidragon Vanguard which is on a whole other level of danger even on upper layer.
『Monsters for monsters!』
A little girl with a lock of pink hair sticking out forward at the top of her head like that of a horn declared.
There's an arm band written with the kanji [Captain] wrapped on her thin arm.
『Eeh, dragons are bad news』
『Right right, I mean they're a bunch of savages.』
『And they bite the moment they see you.』
『And they pierce through barrier walls.』
『And like, they have no concept of [Cute is Justice].』
Looks like it wasn't received well by the other little girls.
『Ooh, just let's do it!』
With that declaration by the commanding little girl, the little girls timidly walked toward a Demidragon Vanguard.
Then, while the little girls were feuding over who would be in charge of putting the bell on Demidragon Vanguard, the demidragon noticed their existence and let out a roar.
The little girls scampered away out of fear for the roar.
『I told you it's bad news!』
The dragon chased after the little girls all while biting on the barrier that protected them.
『Oh no no no, it's shaving down our barrier. Shaved down~』
『The fangs! The fangs are hitting me~』
The little girls are running left and right in panic.
『Run, let's run away quick.』
『Don't we need to punish bad people?』
『We're gonna get eaten first you know.』
『Eeh, then we're just gonna leave the bad people?』
『You do it then.』
The little girls ran away into the tower's hole. The captain was the very first to flee.
『You're so cruel everyone--huh? No more footsteps?』
The little girl who hesitated running away noticed the oddity.
She fearfully turned her head around to find a dragon that was about to unleash its breath.
The last little girl jumped into the hole.
A dark purple conflagration struck the spot.
Once the flame subsided, what remained was a charred black wall with absolutely no damage on it. Even the hell fire that could melt rocks cannot damage it, looks like.
The dragon kept bitting on the wall for a while before heading back to its nest.
Fake it may be, dragons won't move as you want them to, it seems like.