Chapter 16 – Boss Rush
The top floors of the “Holy Land of the Evil God” were built as an orthodox dungeon.
The monsters and traps were normal, and more annoying than the dungeon itself was the miasma, but it wasn’t as though there were fatal traps, and as long as they were properly prepared, it wouldn’t be impossible for a high level adventurer party to conquer them.
Following that, the middle floors were completely different and were floors that focused on solving puzzles. In exchange for a huge decrease in monsters and traps, various puzzles lay in wait. Unlike the top floors, it was impossible to break through with simple battle power.
A dungeon like this was the only one in this world, and the lack of know-how on how to conquer it was one of the reasons for the heightened difficulty.
Then what about the lower floors that awaited beneath it?
It didn’t have ferocious traps; on the contrary, there wasn’t a single one. It didn’t have complicated puzzles either. The miasma was something that became stronger the deeper you went, but that was it.
However, even compared to the upper floors and middle floors, the difficult of the lower floors were far higher/.
The reason was extremely simple──the monsters were strong.
The monsters that appeared in the top and middle floors were stronger than those in other dungeons, but they were a miscellaneous lot that would respawn infinitely, so no matter how strong they might have been, there was a limit.
But on the other hand, the monsters that appeared on the lower floors were…
“What is the meaning of this, Anri!?”
“This ain’t what we agreed on, yanno!”
Seeing the lower floors on-screen, Sophia and Anbaal came screaming at me.
“What are you talking about?”
“Are you intending to play the fool? I was speaking of those monsters… Aren’t they unique monsters! According to the rules, you were only allowed to summon a single dragon.”
“Boldly breakin’ the rules like this. You sure got guts, huh.”
The reason they were angry was because they saw the strength of the monsters on the lower floors.
Vampire Lord, Dragon Zombie, High Spectre, Ogre Zombie… The screen depicted an abnormal scene where high level undead that might normally be bosses in other dungeons were appearing as regular monsters.
Of course, they were miscellaneous monsters that spawned endlessly, and it goes without saying each of them was a unique monster without exception.
“『During the duration of the match, Evil God Anri will not summon additional monsters. However, a single dragon is permitted.』”
“That’s right. Did we not clearly decide on the rules already!”
Right; the rules meant that I wasn’t able to summon unique monsters. With Vnee as an exception though.
But if you were asking if I broke the rules, then that wasn’t the case either.
“I’m not breaking the rules.”
“I’m not breaking the rules, because the one who summoned those 『wasn’t me』.”
Right. In the end, the rules only stated that it was against the rules for “me to” summon. It stated “Evil God Anri” in the writing. The rules didn’t forbid somebody “other than me” to summon unique monsters. Because of that, somebody other than me summoning unique monsters was still consistent with the rules.
“Wha-? Are you saying that there is somebody other than you who can summon that many monsters?”
“The 30th floor boss, my other kin.”
“Your other kin, you say?”
Right, it was the former 10th floor boss No Life King after I gave him my divine protection and made him my kin.
To begin with, as the king of all undead, he had the ability to summon lower class undead, but even after he evolved into something else due to my blessing, that ability was in good health. Rather, you could say that it was strengthened.
He could even summon a Vampire Lord who should have been the same tier as him back when he was still the No Life King, and he had these undead stationed between the 21st and 29th floors.
“It is true that it wouldn’t be strange for a divine’s kin to be capable of such a thing, but… don’t you feel that you are being a little sly?”
“I’m not breaking the rules.”
“Well yeah, ya aren’t, but…”
Sophia and Anbaal still looked a little dissatisfied, but they reluctantly accepted it since it wasn’t breaking the rules.
“But still, that is quite the gathering of fairly high-class undead, isn’t it.”
“The 30th floor boss is an undead, so that’s natural.”
“No matter how our match goes, it’s basically settled that your patroned race is gunna be all the undead, ey?”
By patroned races, Sophia’s is 『the Human Race』, Anbaal’s is 『the Demon Race』, and mine is 『Undead』 huh? I don’t particularly like undead or anything, and zombies and rotting ones like that are actually something I’m bad with, but since it fits the image of an Evil God, I can’t find any words to reply with.
“…I’ll think about it.”
“Yeah, do so.”
“But Anbaal. As long as the undead are not high-class, almost all of them lack a will. Will the faith she gathers from them not be quite trivial?”
“Well yeah, but it ain’t a big deal. Once she combines it with 『Fear』, it ain’t bad, right? Undead themselves are pretty feared, after all.”
“I see. That is certainly true.”
Personally, I would prefer not to be more feared than I already am but… being feared gets me more faith, so my feelings are a little complex.
Having thought that far, I remembered a question about faith that I had been wanting to ask Sophia for a while now.
“I remembered it since you mentioned faith, but are you okay with the humans that turned into my followers?”
She’s in charge of the Human Race and they’re the basis for her faith, but the Pope and the humans of this country worship me instead. Wouldn’t she look unkindly upon it? Or so I’ve been wondering.
“It would trouble me if they increase too much, but just a portion of them is fine. Moreover, rather than being faithful towards you, they were closer to rejecting faith towards myself, so the responsibility lies with me.”
“I see. Then that’s great.”
It’s true that they weren’t originally faithful towards me, but rather that they were rebelling against the Church of Sacred Light, and I just sort of hijacked it. As the darkness that’s naturally born from light, although their beliefs were in the form of rejection, you could say that they did believe in Sophia in a way.
“Guess since ya had the right attributes as a divine, it worked out. Tough stuff. Well, I did have some problems when you first popped into this world though.”
Hearing this for the first time, I accidentally let my voice leak out. They noticed me from that long ago?
“You knew about me?”
“Well of course we did. From a long time ago, visitors from another world have not been particularly rare, but even amongst them, you were by far the most different, after all. Most of them had the light attribute, but you…”
“And it wasn’t even a simple darkness attribute, yanno? To begin with, even though basically all the visitors have appeared on a magic circle on our end, you completely ignored that and forcefully came in here, so you stood out.”
“I was just sent in here.”
It’s not like I came here of my own will. I was just forcefully sent here by that Evil God.
“We understand that much. At the very least, when you had first arrived in our world, you did not have enough power to cross the walls of the worlds.”
“Just as we were thinking that we’d just watch ya for a bit, ya suddenly turned into a divine, so we were pretty anxious at the time, yanno?”
That wasn’t my intention either. It was all things that couldn’t be helped.
“After that I was on guard more, but all ya did was gather followers, or create a country, or spread a scripture, and nothing particularly suspicious.”
“There were some points of doubt, but it was fact that there was a new Administrator. It would not have done to ignore the issue of 『Authorities』 so we decided to come into direct contact with you.”
“You’re telling me this now because you trust me more?”
“Well, at the very least we have confirmed that you yourself have no schemes.”
“Personality sucks though.”
Quiet, Anbaal. Also I don’t want to hear that from you.
“From the way you said that, you mean that somebody other than me is scheming?”
“The intention of the one that sent you in here is unknown, after all. Did you hear anything from them?”
“…Nothing at all.”
Being asked that by Sophia, I searched my memories, but couldn’t remember hearing anything in particular from when I was sent in here by that Evil God. He didn’t tell me what to do in this world either.
“Considering that he did not contact you before, nor after you became a divine, should we perhaps consider it as a mere whim…?”
“Well, can’t hurt to be cautious, ey?”
It’s true that I don’t know anything about that Evil God. I don’t know if I’ll ever know why I was sent into this world, but I’ll bear it in mind.
The monsters that appeared on the lower floors were all high-class undead. And the strength of each one was on par with the old No Life King. Considering that No Life King was more or less on par with Leonora, the party was facing a group of enemies that all had the strength of a Heavenly King.
If it was just one battle, then the mixed party with both the Demon King and two of the Four Heavenly Kings would probably have the advantage. But once they repeated the fighting over and over, they would eventually grow tired, and it was clear as day that the disadvantage would fall to the challengers.
…That’s what I thought.
After crossing swords with the monsters and then leaping back in retreat, Ojisama spoke to Arc.
『It seems that the weapons used by you lot would be more effective on these.』
『My name. Not ‘you lot’, but Arc.』
Ojisama looked at Arc’s expression with a dubious expression, but perhaps eventually sensing his intention, he gave a manly smile and brandished his sword.
『Hmph, very well. Then Arc, this will be the opposite of the time with the Living Armour earlier. I shall cut open a path, so you put them down.』
『Leave it to me!』
Arc and Ojisama──
『Can’t be helped. I’ll support ya.』
『Hmph, somebody of your calibre is going to support me?』
『Heh! Aren’t you the one bumping into me by accident?!』
『I would not commit such a blunder!』
Lionel and Vikuto──
『You were, Miss Orlaine, weren’t you.』
『I shall take care of all the enemy attacks, so I would like to have you concentrate on attacking.』
Orlaine and Renarve──
Each of them paired up, and began attacking the enemy in combination. Certainly, making use of the Heroes’ Holy Weapons against the undead was the best strategy. But who on earth could have predicted that these two groups that should have been hostile until just a few days ago could work together this well.
Seeing them get along so well was instead making me worry about the future.
They look so close that in the worst case, Ojisama might even say something like “Hmph, falling in a place like this is pathetic. Were you not going to defeat me?” and save the Heroes in a pinch.
Or maybe on their journey together they would realise the existence of the mastermind, or some great evil, and stand together as companions to defeat it or something… Wai-, isn’t that exactly this situation?
No, no, whether it’s ‘mastermind’ or ‘great evil’, neither of them fit me no matter how you think about it, so it has to be different. Leaving my public image aside.
While I was thinking about such things, the mixed party pushed back against the pressure of the monsters.
Ojisama opened a path with his flames, and Arc leapt in with determination and cut at the Vampire Lord.
Weaving skilfully through the gaps created by Vikuto’s ice arrows, Lionel stabbed at the Dragon Zombie.
Renarve parried the High Spectre’s magic with a sword clad in wind magic, and protected by him, Orlaine hit it with light arrows.
It was a scene worthy of being sung in legends or myths.
『Alright! Found the stairs!』
『Jump in in turn! Our objective is not to defeat the monsters, but to advance ahead!』
『You guys can go right ahead, leave the rearguard up to me!』
『Renarve, Miss Orlaine, please go ahead first!』
『Y-, You’re calling me ‘Miss’ as well…? Geez, understood!』
This was only the 21st first floor, and with all the floors up until the 29th, the road ahead was still long. Normally, seeing them struggle so much on the first floor, you wouldn’t imagine them reaching the bottom floor no matter what. But for some reason I basically expected that they would reach there.
It seems that I might finally need to prepare myself for the worst.
It’s a rule that the early game bosses appear in the end of the dungeon as normal monsters, after all.
No Life King-sama? He’s still in the middle of warming up.