Chapter 3 – A Common Development
A suspicious girl clad from head to toe in pitch black walked wordlessly through the forest… It’s me though.
I experienced various shocks, but dwelling on them won’t get me anywhere, so I decided to do something else for now.
At any rate, what I really want right now is reach a human settlement.
Based on what I’ve seen from the skills earlier, I can’t really feel hopeful. But even so, if I stay here, my only choice is to starve to death so there’s no helping it.
In the skill explanation it said “the effect on humans is lower” so I have no choice but to bet on that.
Moreover, I was worried about the curse of the tantou and robe, but what they meant was “if you drop it, it’ll return to you after certain amount of time” and “even if you try to equip something else, it’ll fly off”.
I gave putting the tantou in my item box for a try, and found that the putting away part was possible.
But after thirty minutes it flew out on its own and settled itself into my right hand.
And moreover, while my hand was empty I tried to pick up a branch about the size of a wooden sword, but this time the tantou immediately flew out and knocked the branch out of my hand.
…Because it looked like it was jealous, I ended up finding it a little cute.
Also, it was fine if I picked up a small branch that wouldn’t become a weapon.
As you’d expect, even if nobody was around I didn’t feel like stripping, so I haven’t tested the robe yet but it’s probably the same.
But this means that I won’t be able to wear other clothing.
I don’t have a habit of dressing up, but I’m against having only the one suit.
Let’s sincerely pray that there’s a way of dispelling the curse.
Because I didn’t have shoes, I had no choice but to walk barefoot.
At first I walked timidly, afraid that rocks or sticks would cut my feet, but mysteriously there was no pain.
It might be that the physical ability that the evil god spoke about isn’t just athletic ability, but includes toughness and stuff as well.
Once I considered that this unknown body of mine might not be human, the dread surged forth, but I’ve decided not to think about it for now.
But wow, my field of vision sure is terrible.
Because of all the thickly grown trees, there’s nothing but blind spots.
I don’t show it on my face, but inside I’m scared that an animal will suddenly jump out from the shade of a tree and attack me.
No, if it’s just a normal animal then that might still be better.
From the fantasy-ness of this world, it’s plenty possible that a monster or something will appear instead.
The aimlessly wandering girl is suddenly surrounded by a pack of orcs and goblins.
The pitiful and unfortunate bishoujo was made into their plaything and… Mn, impossible, huh?
Despite myself, I accidentally thought up such an impossible delusion.
If I could have such a heroine-like development, to begin with, it wouldn’t have been odd for me to have had a steamy romance in my old life.
But I’ve never even gotten close to getting a boyfriend, and it was all underlings arbitrarily pledging their loyalty to me.
Mn, thinking about it again, it’s impossible, right?
Even considering my skills, I can’t imagine anything except a scene of orcs and goblins waiting upon me.
I don’t want to experience such a shocking event either, so let’s hurry up and get out of the forest.
I was making good progress through the foliage when suddenly the trees around me disappeared.
I could see a roughly 20 metre clearing between the trees.
Though it wasn’t paved, it was probably a road, and along the flattened dirt of this road that stretched to my left and right were a number of wheel, hoof and foot prints.
And on the right hand side was a carriage that had stopp-… stopped?
Feeling doubt about a carriage that went out of its way to stop in the middle of the forest, I looked more closely and found that around the carriage were about ten men, clearly nobody decent, surrounding the carriage with swords and clubs in hand.
Wai-, could that carriage possibly be in the middle of being attacked by bandits?
And of all things, right here, right now, as I leave the forest?
Why do I have to encounter such a cliched development? It couldn’t be that this is some scheme of that evil god, could it?
There are still a lot of things I don’t understand, but for now I have to think about what I’m going to do.
For now, I have three choices────
(1) Anri-chan with her strong sense of justice, rushes to the aid of the carriage, driven by her sense of righteous indignation.
(2) Anri-chan who obeys the strong, butters up the bandits and attacks the carriage together with them.
(3) Anri-chan who follows the creed of letting sleeping dogs lie, decides that she didn’t see a thing, and runs away.
Before I knew it I was using my revised name… Incidentally, I’m picking choice (3) of course.
Eh? Isn’t this where you’re supposed to pick (1), you ask?
Don’t joke around, I have absolutely no intention of fighting.
As a cultural clubs-type person right down to the bone, I really wish that you wouldn’t hope for such sports clubs-type stuff from me.
And moreover, nonchalantly strolling in front of that group of brutes would be like a sheep jumping into a pack of wolves.
For the same reason I’ll say no to (2), and to begin with, I’m not so inhumane that I’d support the bandits.
Even (3) is inhumane, you say? No, no, telling a feeble level 1 girl to fight more than 10 bandits should be what’s inhumane.
To you inside the carriage────probably a princess, or a merchant or something────sorry, but please just accept this as your own bad luck, and don’t get me wrapped up in this.
I quietly began moving back into the forest so that the bandits and the person in the carriage wouldn’t notice.
Going by novel cliches, right now would be the moment that I step on a branch and draw attention to myself due to the sound, but I’m not going to make such a mistake.
Even while keeping my eyes in their direction, I’m paying attention to my feet… Geh-, our eyes met.
The bandit furthest back; in other words, the man closest to me, looked in my direction and let out a shriek.
“W-, What is it?”
“A-, A woman? No…”
Like a chain effect, the other men who looked in my direction backed away.
“No…”, you say? You know, I am technically a woman you know? Biologically speaking.
At about 30 metres in between, the bandits and I wordlessly faced each other.
A strained silence filled the area.
Unable to bear the silence, I unconsciously thought ‘anything is fine, just say something‘ so I opened my mouth.
But that instant, the strained tension erupted.
“S-, SAAAVE MEEEEEEEEE―――――!!!”
“W-, WAIT FOR MEEEE!”
At that moment, the bandits fled in all directions.
Completely dumbfounded, I just gazed at their retreating figures.
When I snapped out of it, the bandits were already long gone, and only the stopped carriage was there.
Wait, I didn’t notice earlier, but looking closely there’s still one man by the carriage.
I thought that it might have been a bandit who was late to escape, but he was wearing clothing different from the bandits I just saw.
He was probably the owner of the carriage, and was just about to be attacked by the bandits.
It was just barely in time, but it seems that things ended without him being killed.
Unexpectedly, I ended up saving him. But I wonder what’s wrong with him.
From what I saw of the bandits’ response from earlier, there’s no doubt that the skill works just fine on humans as well.
Meaning that the chance that this man is afraid as well is high.
Honestly speaking I just want to pass on anything that’ll gouge at my heart any more, but I might be able to come into contact with him amiably, so passing up this chance is a waste.
Indeed. I didn’t do a thing and the bandits just ran on their own, but you could say that to this guy I’m his saviour.
If I speak to him amicably, I’m sure it’ll be okay.
Thinking this, I approached the man.
Oops, I’d better put this tantou in my item box so that I don’t accidentally provoke him.
Also, smiling is important for developing friendly relations. Smile, smile.
However, when I desperately put on a smile, the already pale man’s complexion grew noticeably worse.
Did I fail somehow?
Tilting my head in confusion, the man flung the leather bag in his hand towards m-…HEBU-!?
“S-, SAVE ME GOD―――――!!!”
It seems that something metal was inside the leather bag, so something hard and heavy smacked into my face.
While I was confused at this sudden abuse, the man frantically jumped onto the coachman’s spot and pulled the reins, and hurried the carriage away.
The carriage ran away like it was sliding, and travelled down the forest road just like that, before finally disappearing.
Still holding the leather bag that dropped from my face into my hands, I just stood frozen there.
… … … … … …It hurts.