All posts by Ph.D

Arachne – 9

An Unwilling Return


“What to do…”

I looked at the mountain of order forms piling up on the table while racking my brain for a solution.

Greetings, it’s been a while.

I am Arakura Shiori (25), an Arachne spider monster woman with an appearance that could pass for a character in the first season of Ka●●● Rider without needing any costumes.

Or if you can remember me as the owner of Arachne Tailor, Shiori Arachne, it would be my honor.

Well then, let’s talk about the problem I encountered this time.

It’s about the prototype air cushion I made out of Arachne silk at the time of the ‘Siren Incident’.

After I put it on the storefront as a trial run, its popularity slowly but surely spread. It has become a popular item now, and one-third of my store’s sales was due to the cushion.

Apparently, this cushion wasn’t just a simple seat to improve comfort for the passengers; it also created a revolution in transportation and goods circulation.

Roads without any form of decent pavement, plus carriage wheels made out of wood.

They constantly inflict damage upon the passengers’ butts during the long ride, and even people who have gotten used to it still couldn’t take it for long. Until now, setting up intervals of rest on the road for the stagecoach’s passengers had been considered the norm… However, with the situation now improved, high-speed stagecoachs were born.

As the coachman and the passengers all have their seats covered in air cushions and their ride became much more comfortable, the trip would need less rest time, and the carriage could go faster than before without inducing much motion sickness.

Horse carriages now go over twice as fast as before (with the reduced rest time taken into account).

Yeah, no wonder this stuff got popular…

Furthermore, not only passengers, but cargo has also benefited from it. I heard that specialized carriages transporting fragile goods have been making good use of the cushions.

As they could now transport goods such as pottery, eggs, soft fruits, and the like to regions far away from where they were produced, the merchants in town were beaming with smiles after managing to buy a large amount of cushions from me not too long ago.

That, in itself, was a good thing. But for me…

“Miss owner! It is me, Alrond from the Rihak Traders’ Guild! Urgent order! I need 90 of the large cushions and 200 of the small ones as soon as possible!”

Elder Alrond, belonging to the Traders’ Guild of Rihak, ran towards me. His face looked as if the world was ending.

Alrond was an old man with a charming white beard.

“My my, guildmaster Alrond. It is an honor for you to personally come purchase… However, I have to inform you that even if you need them so urgently, it would take some time for me to produce that many cushions.”

“That’s the problem! Please, I sincerely request of you! Ever since a few of our people managed to increase their profits by a huge margin by using high-speed carriages, the guild’s inner balance has been getting extremely dangerous! I must distribute the cushions to the other members as soon as possible…!”

My my, that doesn’t sound good.

I might be able to make it if I work all day and night for 3 days…

“No, no, my order is more important, miss owner.”

That interruption to the conversation came from a repeat customer to my place, Garland, Battalion Commander to the troops stationed in Rihak.

Brown hair, huge… He’s like a bear from the forest.

“Businesses experiencing some delay won’t kill anyone. More importantly, I would like to order some cushions for army transportation carriages. 40 large-size, 40 medium-size, 160 small-size. Also…”

“You dissing merchants?! Goods shipping is exactly the lifeline of the town!”

“But even if you say so, the army should always be the first one to receive cutting-edge technology. You should know that any delays at all might bring about unwanted interferences from our possible enemy countries.”

Guildmaster Alrond and commander Garland glared at each other, and sparks were flying.

While that tense atmosphere was going on, the shop’s doorbell rang, signaling another visitor.

The first thought that appeared in my mind when I looked at the new customer was “A dwarf!”, at least from his appearance alone. He took a glance at guildmaster Alrond and commander Garland, then talked to me.

“Hey… I’ll be troubling you for a bit. I’m from the horse harness guild. About those air cushions, can you make some thin ones? It’s for pre-stuffing the undersides of the carriage floor. For now, I’ll need each cushion to be one-tenth of the area of the floor, and one set should be 6 of them… I’ll need around 30 sets.”

“Heeeeey!! Don’t try to get ahead of us, you fucker!”

“That’s right, and I ordered first to begin with…”

“Like hell I care! Weren’t you busy shooting glares at each other?!”

“You fool, this is an extremely important matter directly relating to the town’s development!”

“And you think my order is not important? It’s a matter of national security!”

Whoaaaaa…

It’s just getting out of control now. Chaos.

More and more curious onlookers were gathering due to the mess.

If I don’t do something here, I won’t be able to continue my work.

“G-Got it! I got it, please stop fighting! I’ll deal with all your orders somehow!”

Before I knew it, that shout has already left my mouth.

Shit, but it’s already too late when that thought appeared in my mind.

“Ooooh! I’m saved! I’ll repay you in the next guild meeting!”

“Yes, this is indeed good news for us..”

“Hey girlie, will you be okay? …Well, you’re making them for me, so I’m not going to say anything.”

The three of them went back, as happy as can be.

…While leaving behind the mountain of order forms that I mentioned in the beginning.

“Well then, dwelling on it’s not going to solve anything. Can’t continue my work if I don’t deal with these… but the deadline’s just one week away. It’s physically improbable, no matter how much I try…”

Actually, it’s not that I can’t find a way to solve this problem. I can try to look for craftsmen who can mass produce Arachne Silk.

The reason why I shouted “I’ll deal with it somehow!” during the mess in the store was because that idea flashed through my mind at that time.

“Yeah, but… That place is the devil’s lair… I really shouldn’t have accepted those orders.”

Well, it’s long past the time for regrets now.

At this point of time, if I just cancel the orders as I like, there’s going to be a whole slew of problems considering who my customers are.

Yeah. No other choice. Have to brace myself and go.

I rummaged around in my storehouse to find some stuffs that could pass as payment instead of money for the craftsmen, stuffed those inside a few bags of holding, then left the shop.

Not too far from the town of Rihak is a forest overgrown with gigantic trees.

It’s called the “Forest of Spiders” and feared by the townspeople as being a place rampant with the high-rank monster Arachne.

Yes. Basically… my birthplace.

This forest used to be the only place in the outskirts of town where you can acquire Arachne Silk, and thus visited by quite a lot of adventurers, apparently.

Of course, it seemed like ever since I began supplying the silk in town, there’s been less and less people going to the forest.

As for the reason why I came here… as everyone might have guessed, I planned on asking my mother and sisters to help make Arachne Silk.

I used to be just a weakling Arachne, so I got scared of the cannibalism and ran away from the forest. But now, I won’t need to worry about that anymore… I think. Probably.

Right after I entered the forest, where eyes were no longer on me, I immediately turned back into the Arachne form.

My lower body quickly enlarged into a silver spider body, and a total of 6 new eyes, red like jewels, surfaced on my forehead.

Yeah, this body really is much better for traveling in the forest… Boulders and fallen trees wouldn’t be able to impede my path, as long as they weren’t too big.

“Well now, I think the nest was… somewhere in this direction?”

After I finished transforming (or to be precise, after I released my transformation), I once again headed for the deepest part of the forest.

Some Sugar Bees and Cutting Bunnies flitted through my sight once in awhile, but they ran with their tails between their legs as soon as they saw me.

A long time ago, I used to struggle with them in life-or-death battles, but now… Wow, I’m feeling really nostalgic.

…And while my mind was deep inside those emotional memories, something even more nostalgic appeared in front of my eyes.

Kick Birds and Poison Crawlers.

The former looked like a chicken-sized ostrich, and the latter was a huge caterpillar, around 30 centimeter.

Apparently, the Kick Bird was trying its best to defeat and eat the Poison Crawler… and I’ve just showed up in the middle of the hunt.

Seemed like fights between these sort of monsters were considered too low level, so my danger sense didn’t even bother ringing.

I got quite close to them, but they still didn’t seem to have noticed me.

Well then, I thought while creating threads from my fingertips to bind up both of them.

Once upon a time, these monsters used to be my lifeline.

*chomp* *crunch crunch*

It’s been quite a while since the last time I ate them, and this time, they entered my mouth as a snack.

Yeah… Now that I tasted them again, I really couldn’t consider them to be anything delicious.

Probably because I got used to cooked food already…

But, well, depending on how it’s cooked, Kick Birds might be tasty. Like in a chicken bowl.

As I continued through the forest, I grabbed a few more Kick Birds along the way.

After doing a quick twist of their necks, I wrapped them in threads and put inside the bag of holding.

Other than that, I also gathered some plants and fruits that might be useful as materials for decorating clothes, and after another 30 minutes of walking…

Well, to describe what’s in front of me, it would be a huge plate made out of threads.

The structure in front of me made use of branches from the giant trees to stay in the air.

Yes. It was the Arachnes’ nest, where I used to live.

“That was fast… Has it always been this close? …Oh yeah, my movement speed went up, was it?”

My level and my stats both were raised to high heavens compared to the last time I was here, so no wonder.

At that time, even my sisters, who were still just juvenile Arachnes, could do whatever they wanted to me, treating me like their toy.

Those sisters have probably become real, honest-to-goodness adult Arachnes now.

They should be willing to help me make Arachne Silk, depending on my payment.

I hardened my resolve and walked toward the nest.

After climbing the last step to reach the treetop nest, I peeked out from the branches’ shadow.

One, two, three, four… Yup, my mother and sisters… Everyone is here, conveniently.

Uuuuugh… It’s really hard to show my face.

While it’s true I left in order to keep myself safe, but this is pretty much the scene of the returning daughter who ran away from home.

Eh, who cares! Women should be brave1!

Adding my last life, I’m already nearing my thirties!

“Umm… I’m back…”

After making up my mind, I poked half of my body out of the branches’ shadow and called out to them.

Hearing my voice, the Arachnes turned back to look at me.

And just as they saw me, everyone froze up with looks of shock on their faces.

……

Silence ruled the nest for several seconds.

That’s right, it was just a few short seconds. But I felt like those seconds were an eternity.

And just as I was crumbling from the fear that maybe I really wasn’t welcome here—

“”””Our angel’s baaaaaaack?!!!“”””

“Heeeey— No way! You’re actually back?! You haven’t grown at all!! So cuuuuuuuute!!”

“Can I lick you?! I can, right?!”

*sniff* *sniff*… Aaaaaahhh… Shiori fragranceeeee… So goooood…”

“Ya, did you get stronger?… So we can’t eat you now…”

“Yes, we really can’t… Which means,”

“”””We can eat you now (sexually)! ♪””””

With loud cheers, the Arachnes surrounded me in a blink of an eye.

…H-Huh?!

I didn’t expect this reaction… wait, actually, what in the world was that?!

In terms of power, my sisters shouldn’t pose a threat to me… but I’m feeling danger of another kind entirely!

With their cheeks blushing, my sisters coquettishly creeped up close to me.

At the same time, I unwittingly retreated bit by bit.

“Girls! Calm down!”

A voice brooking no dissent succeeded in controlling this chaotic situation. It came from a particularly large Arachne.

Yup, that’s her alright.

“Greetings, Shiori, my daughter. It is good to see you back.”

“It has been a long time, mother.”

The one who gave birth to me in this worldFalyias, the Mother Arachne.

A voluptuous, beautiful woman with long silver hair and a pair of peaches that could easily be G-sized.

Even when compared to my sisters, her presence was on another level entirely.

“Yes. It seems you have gained quite some strength. The forest lost its calm just from your presence.”

“…My apologies… Actually… I’m sorry I left without telling anyone, but my return was because I have something to request…”

“Hmm. Let me hear it. For magical beasts like us, strength is everything. We shall cooperate, as long as it’s reasonable.”

“Yes. Actually, I’m running a tailor in town… However, there was a large order for Arachne Silk recently, and I wondered if perhaps everyone could help…”

“Arachne Silk?”

“Yes, in the world of humans, fabric made from our threads is called such.”

“What? Making fabric from our threads? …Now that you mentioned it, those clothes you’re wearing…”

“Yes, I made this from the threads I wove. It’s surprisingly durable, and it’s been very useful.”

“Mmm… Indeed… But it’s not just made out of our threads, right?”

On mother’s face were a few beads of cold sweat.

Indeed, I used a special kind of fabric, created by treating the normal Arachne Silk with a few different procedures.

“Mother really is perceptive. After weaving the silk fabric, I dyed it with dyes created from the scales of light-aligned True Dragons. Furthermore, I enchanted it multiple times…”

“T-True Dragons?!”

“Also, the flower design on the chest was made from processed Lemire tail feathers.”

“The God Bird… Lemire… Could it be that you hunted them yourself?”

“Yes, I hunted them myself. Normally, if I try to acquire these sorts of material from the market, I won’t be able to use them to make the normal, everyday-use kind of clothes, though it’s not exactly impossible.”

My mother, along with the whole Arachne family, were all shocked, their jaws dropped on the ground.

“I did feel like you got stronger, but I didn’t expect the change to be so drastic…”

“It’s thanks to the [Predation] skill I inherited from mother.”

“Umm… No, even if you used Predation, normally you still wouldn’t be able to get this powerful.”

Hmm? Is that so?

Well, certainly, I did think that this skill was really quite amazing.

Considering it’s a skill that’s automatically granted to the whole race, it’s much too abnormal.

After asking about the details from mother, apparently, the [Predation] skill that normal Arachnes possess can grant the predator a chance, with around 10% likelihood, to gain a few percentage of the skills or powers of the prey, provided that they completely finished eating the target without leaving a single scrap, and that they hunted the preys by themselves.

Wait a minute?

My [Predation] even applies to preys that I didn’t catch myself, and as long as I eat a part of it, I’m almost guaranteed to absorb some sort of power.

Otherwise, the feast at the Foren family couldn’t have strengthened me like that.

Hmmm, looks like my [Predation] isn’t something normal.

So it turns out that I’m no exception to the rule – that is, I also have an overpowered reincarnation power.

Wait… If so, this will be a problem.

I brought some stuff like Middle Dragon’s sirloin meat and Ogre Bear’s liver as a reward, but if the normal [Predation] skill works that way, their values would drop severely.

“Hmm? What’s wrong, Shiori? You look worried.”

“Ah, yes… I was thinking about the reward for everyone.”

“Hmm, is that so? True, work must come with payment… Mmmm… By the way, Shiori.”

“Yes, mother?”

“…I had been thinking that I would like to wear something just as brilliant.”

Mother’s eyes were shining with some sort of expectations while looking at me.

Hmmm, I thought that Arachnes just consider being naked as the norm, basically, but it turns out they’re also interested in beautiful clothes. Not surprising, considering that they’re female humanoid monsters.

“…Understood. The deadline for my order is coming soon, so if mother can wait until after I’m finished, I’ll make you a set of clothes.”

“Mmm, I see. Apologies, I didn’t mean to rush you.”

Mother was all beaming with smiles. Did she want the clothes that much?

…Well then, at any rate, I managed to acquire mother’s cooperation. Next is my sisters…

“Hey, Shiori.”

Someone tapped my shoulder. When I turned around, my sisters, who were standing in a line, talked to me.

“You’ll give me something too, right?”

“Y-Yes. If it’s within my ability… Shall I make something for you to wear, like with mother?”

“No, I’m fine. Rather than that… can you… give me a hug?”

“Eh?”

“I finally have a chance to meet with you again after a long time. Don’t you want to deepen our sisterhood?”

My older sister put her hands to her blushing cheeks, embarrassed and fidgeting like a maiden in love.

sisterhood, right?

“Ah, then a kiss full of familial love for meeee!”

“Sleep in the same bed with me…”

“Actually, I want the deep kind of kiss!”

“…The full course, please.”

“Let’s explore the limits of passion together with me and enter the world of ○○○ and ○○○… Hehehehee…”

Nooooooooooo!

This is totally NOT the familial kind of love at aaaaaaaaall!!!

“”””Those are valid rewards, so give it to us!””””

My sisters spoke in a perfect chorus while insisting on getting their ways.

No, I’m not agreeing with thaaaaaat!!

One week later.

I finally somehow managed to acquire the necessary amount of air cushions and delivered them.

Seeing my haggard, bony appearance, guildmaster Alrond of the Traders’ Guild, commander Garland, and the dwarf-looking man from the harness guild (I heard later on that he’s the guildmaster) got worried about me and promised that they won’t ever throw me unreasonable orders like that again.

Yeah.

Well… To speak of the end result, I managed to protect my chastity.

I got my sisters to compromise, so I didn’t need to go any further than giving kisses on the cheek or becoming a hug pillow.

Yet even so, my sisters would still try to go pass that line if there’s an opportunity. Because of that, to protect myself, I hadn’t slept a wink for this whole week.

No wonder I looked so haggard.

I knew it, that bad feeling I got in the beginning was correct.

I knew it, that place really was the devil’s lair.

After giving mother the clothes I promised as her reward, I swore to myself that I would never get close to that place ever again.

…By the way, some time after, people began to spread rumors about an immortal Arachne wearing a midnight-black dress and call her ‘The Queen’.


As usual, below is the stats of the product.

It’s the dress Shiori gave to her mother at the end.

——

Queen Black

Defense +75

Magic Defense +35

Darkness Resistance +40%

Basic Stats Charm +1

When worn, a pitch-black aura will appear.

Recover 5% of maximum HP every minute. (Only in combat)

Recover 2% of maximum MP every minute. (Only in combat)

Transformable. Can be worn in both human form or spider form.

A dress black as night, dyed by the scales of a darkness-aligned True Dragon.

The bewitching charm of the Mother Arachne was further accentuated by the open back dress and its extravagant use of Starlight Pearls to adorn the chest.


1. Modified from the saying 男は度胸、女は愛嬌 (Men should be brave, and women should be affable)

Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Arachne – 8

The Green Devil


“BOOOOOOIINNNGG!!”

A green, long, and lanky monster let out an incredibly depressing war cry and attacked me.

Though it might looked unimpressive, this monster was apparently considered quite high-ranked, even feared and named by the locals as the ‘Green Pole Devil’.

It can bend its tough yet flexible body to absorb 60% of the physical damage it receives.

Its level is only around 40-50, lower than me, and it doesn’t really have any troublesome attack skill, so the monster isn’t a threat to me… but due to its nature, defeating it takes a long time.

If only I could leverage its weakness to fire, I’d only need one shot… The only reason why I couldn’t was that the monster would get burned, and I wouldn’t be able to use it as materials.

“Mmmm… Grrrr… S-So annoying… You’re just a freaking green bamboo!”

That’s right. The monster that’s been rampaging and swinging its long body in front of me was officially called the ‘Bamboo Devil’. It looked exactly like a bamboo tree…

Long time no see.

I am Arakura Shiori (25), the overpowered half-human half-spider monster Arachne.

In this world, I would be called the owner of Arachne Tailor, Shiori Arachne, instead.

By the way, it’s been one year since I reincarnated in Falyias, the world where I’m currently living in, so I added 1 to my age in the self introduction.

If I round it off, I’d be stepping into the 30-year-old threshold.

Well, I’d be barely 1 year old if I’m counting by the number of years since I’ve reincarnated in this world, though.

And if you ask me why I’m fighting with this bamboo monster…

…Well, um…

I wanted an ‘earpick’.

Furthermore, I wanted the bamboo type, similar to those sold in Japan.

Apparently, the concept of ‘tools for cleaning ears’ didn’t exist in this world, so I had no choice but to shave some random stick of wood to make an earpick… but I just couldn’t get it right.

Looks like I really do need to use some kind of material with the characteristic pliancy of bamboo… The wooden earpick felt sort of hard.

And so, I tried to ask the customers visiting my store to see if there’s a way to purchase some bamboo… but apparently, they can’t be found in the markets around this area.

Bamboo does exist, but they only grow in a place far east, across the ocean.

And I can’t afford to leave the shop empty for several days for just an earpick… Just when I was racking my brain over the problem, a repeat customer of my shop, Ronica the magician, told me some welcoming news.

“Bamboos themselves don’t grow here, but within the category of plant monsters, there is a type of bamboo monster, you know? Well, not only are they quite powerful, they only drop ‘bamboo’ when killed, so no adventurers bother with them.”

When I asked her for the exact location, surprisingly, it was in the nearby ‘Forest of the Tree King’. If I skip over there in Arachne form, it’d only take 2 days for a round trip.

There’s no reason to not go! And so, I aimed for a regular holiday, when the shop is closed, to leave for the forest.

“Boyoyoingggg!!”

… I just didn’t expect the monster to be making me feel so tired.

The Bamboo Devil swung its branches, as thick as a person’s wrist, to attack me from all directions while letting out that depressing shriek.

Looking at how big its branches were, I could easily guess the size of its real body.

It’s so big I couldn’t even see the top even when I looked up.

While throwing out a few casual slashes of my hand to parry its attacks, I jumped forward to get into close range with the Bamboo Devil.

This has gotten way too troublesome now. I decided to use a finishing move, even if it resulted in less usable materials.

“Arrrghh, just die already… 4 Strikes Combo!!”

The claws growing out of my lower body – my spider body – minced the Bamboo Devil’s torso as if slicing through thin air.

*clack!* *klaklaklak!*

Seems like the Bamboo Devil’s physical damage reduction has finally reached the limit. With the four-hit combo from my claws, a large rip immediately appeared on the monster.

“Boinnnggg…”

The Bamboo Devil let out a final shriek and fell down.

Its scream didn’t feel like something a dying creature would make at all, but that’s probably just my imagination.

“Haaahhh… I should have done this right from the start. Actually, don’t I only need enough material for an earpick?… With the size of this thing, just 1% of its undamaged body would have been enough…”

Well, having a reserve of materials is never a bad thing.

If I ever want to, I could begin selling bamboo products, starting from earpicks. Bamboo helmets, bamboo armor, bamboo shields…

Different from normal bamboo, the materials I acquired have a lot of magic inside them, so they’ll probably make for some pretty good quality armor.

…Wait a minute? I heard that you can only get normal bamboo from Bamboo Devils. This is weird.

“Hmmm… Activate [Tactile ThreadSensor Web]”

I felt like this monster was quite a lot stronger than what I’ve heard, so I decided to use [Tactile ThreadSensor Web] to recheck just in case.

—–

King Bamboo

LV 85

HP 0 (Max 4555)

MP 0 (Max 300)

Acquired Skills

Physical Resistance (Large)

Blunt Weapon Resistance (Small)

Flurry

Photosynthesis (Slightly Auto-Heal HP)

A plant-monster subtype, bamboo species.

Lord of the Bamboo Devils.

Due to the skill Physical Resistance (Large), which has the effect of reducing physical damage by over 90%, its physical endurance is even better than the Demon King.

On the other hand, it has no resistance to magic at all, which is the reason why its juvenile form – a bamboo shoot – are often eaten by the lower-rank monster Flame Boar.

—–

…Huh?

Lord of the Bamboo Devils?

King Bamboo?

…So it was a boss monster… over 90% physical damage reduction. No wonder it was so tough.

Hahhh, so tired…

Right, so after getting high-rank materials for nothing, I picked myself back up, returned to the road, and ran full speed back home to my store during the night.

I made sure to return to my human form before entering the village, of course.

It might have been night, but in the village, you can’t be sure if someone’s looking.

“Well then, let’s get on with it.”

I took some monarch bamboo, the material taken from the King Bamboo, out from the bag of holding, then used my right hand’s nails to cut the bamboo into appropriately-sized slices.

Next, I split the slices vertically into sticks the size of chopsticks… The next step is just shaving, shaving, and more shaving.

*Krrrpkrrp*.

*Krrrpkrrpkrrp*.

*Krrpkrrpkrrpkrrpkrrp*…

I made one side of the earpick’s body flat, for a better grip.

The spoon part of the pick was shaved as thin as possible, which helps it clean easier. It’s also spring-shaped to make it gentler on the ear.

I took extra care on the end of the pick to make a smooth curve, since this part will be directly touching sensitive skin.

Don’t underestimate it just because it’s an earpick!

In the end, after trying and failing twice, I finally managed to shave the third pick into the ideal shape.

I used my threadsArachne Silk to make that white, fluffy ball that looks like a pom-pom – the official name for it is bonten, apparently – then used adhesive threads to glue it on the earpick.

And finally. I used my nails to carve some healing runes on the body of the pick and enchanted it.

This was only possible because the material wasn’t just normal bamboo, but monarch bamboo taken from the King Bamboo… This normal earpick turned into a type of magical tool, so to speak.

Hahahah, now I no longer need to worry about hurting my ears due to picking them for too long!

 ※

The next day.

With the completion of the supreme earpick, I immediately tried it out at the store counter.

“Auhhh… uff… this is… really nice… “

Mmm, this felt much better than I expected.

I knew it, earpicks just HAVE to be made from bamboo.

“Nnn… Nnnnn…”

“Shiori… What’s with that sexy voice?”

Oh my, I didn’t notice that a customer has arrived.

When I turned my eyes toward owner of the voice, standing there was a young woman with chestnut hair.

She’s one of my repeat customers, the magician Ronica.

I unwittingly got too into picking my ears and didn’t notice her coming in.

“Ah, miss Ronica. Welcome. Ehee, sorry for showing you that…”

“No, I didn’t really mind… What’s that?”

“Aaah! I’ve been thinking about giving you my thanks, Ronica! Thanks to your information, I got my hands on some bamboo.”

“Aaaah… I see, so that thing is made out of bamboo… What is it used for?”

Ronica played with the earpick with a curious look.

“This thing is, in fact… a tool used to clean the inside of your ears.”

“Mm? Don’t you just use your fingers to scrape out the earwax?”

“This thing can clean deeper than fingers can. And it feels good too, you know? Do you want to try?”

“Eh… That stick goes inside my ears? Kinda scary. I feel like I’ll poke my ears out if I do it myself…”

“Hmm. Then how about I do it for you? Here, if you could just lie down and put your head on my thigh…”

“Eh, you mean… A l-l-l-lap pillow from the lovely Shiori?!”

Suddenly, Ronica jumped forward and asked me with a face as serious as it gets, her cheeks flushed.

Wait, too close! Your face is too close!

“Y-Yeah, we can sit on the raised floor over there, so…”

“It’s all good! I’m fine with wherever as long as I get a lap pillow from Shiori! It’s worth sacrificing an eardrum or two!”

How rude. I’m not that bad.

I may not look like it, but in my past life, I’m already experienced in cleaning my little brother and sister’s ears.

“Yes, well then, put your head here…”

“Waaaa… Shiori’s lap pillow…”

“Hey, don’t grope around! My hand’s going to slip!”

“Even better!”

After lightly hitting Ronica’s hands, which were fondling the back of my hips, I immediately got to cleaning her ears.

…Huh.

Whoa… Eww…

I already knew this world didn’t have the culture of ear cleaning, but this is terrible.

This is truly worth cleaning.

IlluminationLight.”

First off, I enchanted the spell IlluminationLight onto the tip of the earpick.

The light helped a lot in checking the inside of her ears.

Next, I wound some more adhesive threads onto the earpick.

This was to preventing the earwax that I scraped off from falling back inside.

With the preparations complete, I began to carefully clean up Ronica’s ears.

*scritch* *scratch*…

“Hyaah?!”

Ronica’s body nearly jumped off my lap.

Whoops, that was dangerous… I secretly used a bit of my threads to bind her.

“It’s dangerous to move, so try to bear with it, oka~y?”

“Y-Yeah…”

With that sentence, she should be convinced that the reason her body’s not moving was because she’s keeping herself still.

Right, let’s continue.

*scratchy* *scratch*…

“Haaauh!”

*scritch* *scratch*…

“Hiiii!”

*scratch* *scratch* *scratchy* *scratch*…

“A~h… hahhh…”

Oooh, what a haul.

The earwax has already hardened into the shape of the earhole.

I stuck the earpick into it and carefully scraped it out.

*scratch*……*sssssscratch*.

“Ahhaauhn! Wa… Wait… Wait a minute…”

“Not wai~ting! Ah, there’s another big one here. *scratchy scratchy*…”

“Ahhh… aaaahh… hiii…”

Around 20 minutes later.

After getting both ears violated by me, Ronica’s whole body got flushed, with a bit of sweat sticking on her skin… she’s almost hyperventilating, even.

Next, the final finishing touches.

I slightly inserted the puffy part of the earpick, the bonten, into her ears, tapping and rubbing the inside…

As Ronica was already exhausted, she couldn’t even make a sound, but her body was twitching with what I thought was a face of happiness, so let’s just consider this a win. Yeah.

One month later.

Even though it’s not yet opening hours, but there’s already a long, long line of people in front of the Arachne Tailor since early morning.

After that day, Ronica kept on coming to the store and begged me for some ear cleaning again and again. Because of her glowing reviews, I decided to turn it into an official service for the store.

—–

Ear cleaning service, done on a lap pillow by the owner with all of her heart.

(For the first 5 customers with a purchase of over 1 silver coin)

*Only on the first 3 days of every week.

—–

…And with that piece of paper stuck on the door…

The news quickly spread thanks to Ronica’s reviews, and the line got longer with every passing day.

…Or rather, is it fine for the hero and the crown prince and the ex-demon lord to line up together?

Well, sales shot up and I earned a whole lot more, so I didn’t have any reason to complain.


As usual, below are stats of the item created:

—–

Earpick [Emperor Bamboo]

Type: Earpick with bonten

Attack Power 0

Basic Stats Dexterity +1

Passive Healing Effect 3%

Can use the spell [Light, cleanse my bodyClean Body] 5 times per day.

The user may feel some slight pleasure as a side effect of healing magic being cast on the ears.


1. This thing.

Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Arachne – 7

Siren – Second Part


This wasn’t a ship with sails, but a golem ship.

A golem ship… Truly the kind of naval vessel you would find in a fantasy world.

By appearance, it looked similar to a paddle steamer.

Instead of an internal combustion engine, it used a golem to drive the paddle wheel.

Paddle golems themselves used the mana of the spellcasters as energy, so this ship also had several magicians on board to serve as mana suppliers.

By nature, golem engine ships weren’t suitable for long distance fishing or long voyages, but it looked like people usually use them for sailing across shorter distances.

Since the ships didn’t have masts and those other stuffs, the deck felt quite spacious.

Right in the middle of that wide deck, Harn was unveiling his beautiful voice, his pride and joy.

“Aaah, beautiful goddess Kagura. Thou tamed the sacred white beast and sliced apart the ferocious demon of the underworld. And in the end, light filled the land, and hope was returned to the people…”

Apparently, the song that he was singing while accompanying himself with music was based on this world’s mythology.

I can’t deny that it’s quite a clichéd story, but his voice was undeniably beautiful.

He’s completely different from the frivolous man that he was, just moments ago.

The listeners around him were enraptured by his singing, their faces flushed.

The story finally passed the climax, and it ended with goddess Kagura returning to heaven.

And just as it ended, the deck exploded in cheers and applause.

Everyone was throwing offerings non-stop into the donation box put in front of Harn…

“How is it? Quite good, don’t you think?”

Waiting until the listeners scattered, Harn brought the box full of tips to where I was, watching him a little distance away, and showed it to me.

Mostly small and medium copper coins, but considering how many there were, it’s quite the haul.

“Yes, your singing was lovely… Harn, do you always work on passenger ships like this?”

“Ah, naah… this singing is more like a side job kind of thing. My real occupation is an adventurer of the Adventurer’s AssociationGuild.”

“…Wait, so you were an adventurer. Isn’t it quite rare for a bard to be an adventurer?”

“Mm, not exactly. Since a bard travels from town to town, they work together well with the adventurer’s association, which has branch offices in every town… And you need some amount of fighting ability if you’re going to travel alone anyway.”

“I seeeee… So this time, you’re here on this ship because of a job or something similar?”

“Mmmm… Well… Sort of…… Don’t spread this around, ok? Actually…”

Looks like Harn wasn’t someone with very tight lips.

Well, it’s not like I know if he’s obligated to keep the adventurer’s association’s secrets or not.

According to that blabbermouth Harn, recently, ships passing through this area have been constantly getting stranded.

Luckily, no one died and there were only injured people, but according to the results of investigating the damage…

A lot of people mentioned hearing a strange song before the ship got stranded in their testimonies.

Judging from that, it’s likely that the cause of the strandings was some sort of singing aquatic monster, like a merrow1 or siren. And from that conclusion, the association decided to make a request to a bard who can neutralize hypnotic songs, like Harn.

“If that’s true, shouldn’t they stop sending ships out?”

“They can’t do that. Shuren island is a large supplier of magic crystals. Even if trade between the island and the mainland ceases for just 3 days, there’ll be a much too large impact on the islanders and the town of Jiza…”

“Then maybe change the route?”

“They don’t even know where in the route the incidents happened in the first place. One of my duties this time is to find that out.”

“…I see. The request you received wasn’t to defeat the aquatic monsters.”

“…There’s no way I can manage to do that alone.”

I see, no wonder.

“So, what do those merrows or sirens thingy look like?”

“Mmm… Well, first off, both of them are beautiful women with the lower body of a fish. The difference is that merrows manipulate the weather to sink ships, while sirens use their songs to manipulate the sailors to have the ship run aground… so this time, it’s highly likely that sirens were the culprits.”

Hmph. As someone who has the lower body of a spider, I suppose this was where I should show my sympathy… But leaving that aside.

“Lower half of a fish… You mean, like that?”

Around 50 meters ahead and starboard of the ship, a single human floated on the ocean with the lower body half submerged.

Her skin was tinted blue, but she certainly looked like an extremely beautiful woman.

Her long blue hair swayed along with the waves, and I could see something like fins where a normal person’s ears would be.

And once in awhile, *splash*, a large fish tail slapped the water surface.

“Yeah, yeah, exactly like… Whaaaaaaaa?!”

Looks like that was a bulls-eye.

Flustered, Harn took out his harp.

“Ummm, n-neutralization song…”

*ting* *tllling*

Harn began to play his harp even while panicking, but at almost the same time, the water monster began to sing with a voice like the sound of a glass harp.

*Ptwitttlrillllllllriii…tweetwweetwee…*

As the aquatic monster’s song echoed throughout the sea, the song’s magic began to force the ship to deviate from its course.

Looked like it’s stronger than Harn’s neutralization song.

“Grrr… That’s quite some power there, siren, but how about this?!”

*tingtlingting…* *twangggg…*

Harn put more strength into his performance… Beads of sweat formed, crowding his forehead.

And his effort wasn’t in vain. The ship slowly turned back to the right course…

“Hah, haha… How about it, don’t underestimate the power of a bard’s spellsong…”

“Wow, you really are amazing!”

“Of course, right? Right?”

“Ah, but…”

“Hmm?”

“…There’s more of them now, you know?”

“…For real?”

Adding to the first siren, another five showed their upper bodies above the water and joined the fray.

A solo performance turned into a concert.

*Ptwittttwiiiiitlrillllllllriii…tweetwweetweetweeetweetwetwettwee…*

“Waaaarghhhh! Like hell I can neutralize this!!”

“Ahh… Yeah, this really is too much.”

The moment the sirens’ songs harmonized, I could feel the magic inside their singing increased by more than an order of magnitude.

The ship was getting further and further away from its planned course.

Just one person’s ability was certainly not enough to repel their singing.

… If that person was a human, that is.

“Hey, what’s that voice?”

“Sounds beautiful… but sad, somehow.”

“…Hey, look! Over there!”

“Monsters?!”

“They’re sirens! Monsters leading ships astray!”

Whoops, this is bad.

Looked like the other passengers have also discovered them.

The deck began to get crowded, chaotic.

“Hey, at this rate… we’re going to get shipwrecked…”

“So the recent frequent strandings were because of sirens?!”

“H-Hey, sailors! Do something!!”

“We might still make it if we escape on the boats now…”

“There aren’t enough boats for that… or rather, will that song let us go even if we get on the boats?!”

Yeaaah, at this rate, everyone’s going to panic, and worst case scenario, someone might even try to jump off the ship…

No other choice.

“Harn, please stop playing for a bit.”

“W-What silliness are you spouting, miss? … The ship is already going way off track as it is!”

“I have something I want to try. It’ll probably work.”

“… Tch, if nothing changes, at this rate we’re going to lose anyway… Got it, I don’t know what you’re going to do… but try it.”

“Mmm. Right, then…”

*swish*. I took the aforementioned shamisen out of the bag.

I might not have the tortoiseshell, but otherwise, the shamisen was made with all the best rare materials, and I even enchanted it with magic… If I were to give it a name, it would be a ‘Magical Shamisen’.

“H-Hey… That instrument… What the hell is it? I’ve never seen such a shape before… but more importantly, I don’t know if it’s magic or demonic power or something, but it’s giving off some crazy vibe… Just what was it made of?”

“Mmm… Nothing special. And it’s still incomplete, anyway. The body was made from Sword Wood, Stampede Beasts’ fangs, and Firefoxes’ skins… The string is Arachne Silk, I guess.”

“… That’s plenty special already. With all that rare materials, no wonder it’s giving off that devillish aura.”

Streams of sweat ran down from Harn’s forehead. Maybe he’s nervous due to the shamisen’s aura.

“So, are you going to play a neutralization song on that?”

“No… As you would expect, I’m not so omnipotent as to have learned any of the bard’s skills.”

“Then, what are you going to do…?”

“Since sirens themselves sing, I think they should be really sensitive to songs and music, right?”

“Huh? Yeah… Well… From what I’ve heard, there have been cases where they got attracted to a normal song, played without using skills, and approached the performer… At least, such reports exist.”

Then this might work.

I didn’t have any skill to sing or perform spellsongs, but I do have [Charm].

Combine this with the music and the singing…

*peng!* *prreng!*

The sound of the shamisen, which has pretty much transformed into a cursed magical tool already, cut through the ocean waves to reach the sirens.

“In the midst of the o~cean, flowers of camellia~a… Bloom red, unflinching from the waves…” *prrreng*

I sang a song about a fisherman who lost his life at sea, and his sons who followed his footsteps…

This song, Flower Ship, is one of my favourites.

I sang with the best vibrato voice I can, pouring all of my soul into it.

In my opinion, while there can be any number of good songs throughout the whole world, nothing can beat the style of enka in terms of conveying emotions within a song.

Especially when the songs are about loneliness, sadness, sorrow, honor, human love, and the likes.

“Cutting through the wa~ves… Braving through the storms…” *prrengpeng*

Before I knew it, the sirens have quieted down.

Even though they got closer to the ship, they didn’t seem to plan on singing the hypnotic song again any time soon.

“Once again, heading for the sea~… Flower ship of the so~ul…”

With the vibrato coming to a climax, I let myself be carried by the flow and finished the song… And then, after a delayed moment, a rain of applauses fell upon me.

The passengers, who were just moments ago panicking, applauded with tears streaming down their cheeks.

And they’re not the only ones moved. The sirens were crying too.

*Piiikkyurliiii…*

Let’s see… you’re saying that it’s the first time you’ve heard such a heartrendingly sad song?

*Ptryulli. Krkrkrrrrurr… Kyurrrli.*

“Nyahahah, you flatter me. I see, you girls also have it quite rough… That’s why you called the ships?”

*Kyurrllii…*

“Yeah, in the end it just led to ships getting stranded. I’ll need you to stop doing that, learn from your mistakes.”

“Uh… Excuse me?”

“Mmm, what’s up, Harn?”

“… Are you conversing with the sirens?”

Ah. Shoot.

I just talked to them without thinking much about it, but that was because I’m also a monster, specifically an Arachne… Normal people shouldn’t be able to understand their speech.

“Y-Yeah, magic! I have an enchanted ring that allows me to talk with monsters!”

I raised my hand and showed him the silver ring on my middle finger.

In actuality, the ring was enchanted with the spell [Light, cleanse my bodyClean Body].

“Ah, yeah… I see. So what did they say?”

“Mm. Looks like they weren’t intending on getting the ships stranded.”

“Hahhhh? No way they weren’t…”

“In fact, they were looking for help. They used to live in the Dead Ocean region, but then the Kaiser Archelon attacked their nest and chased them out. Since then, whenever they spotted a ship with some powerful-looking human on it, they would use their songs to guide the ships towards their nest, but it seems like the path would cut through a reefy region full of rocks…”

“And so, the end result was that the ships got stranded, is it?”

“That’s right.”

“Aaaah… But… If that’s true… Then probably even S-rank adventurers wouldn’t be able to deal with it, yeah? That monstrous Kaiser Archelon can reach over 20 meters in length. It’s already difficult enough even if we fight it on land, but this time the battlefield is the ocean.”

“Yes, which is why I’ll try to convince the sirens to move to another ocean area.”

“Aaah… No other choice, I guess… Sorry about this, can I request you to handle the problem instead?”

“Leave it to me… In return, can you ask the captain to give me one of the small boats on this ship?”

“Yeah, you’ll need a mean of transportation for guiding the sirens too… Got it, I’ll go ask.”

Moments later.

Seemed like the captain was quite averse to the idea of sending a girl alone off on a boat, but after I convinced him by showing how obedient the sirens are to me (to be precise, by having them perform something like a dolphin performance), I finally acquired the boat.

“Listen, don’t try to do anything over your ability, got it? Return to the ship immediately after you finished guiding the sirens.”

“Yes, don’t worry. I’m not going to do anything over my ability.”

“Alright… I’m leaving this to you, Shiori.”

“Yes. By~e!”

As the sailors and passengers sent me off with grim faces, the boat carried me away from the ship together with the sirens.

To those people, I probably looked like a brave girl sacrificing herself to save the passengers, without any fear for her own life.

But they got it completely wrong.

Just like I promised Harn, I totally did not have any intention to overreach myself.

I simply coincidentally encountered the Kaiser Archelon while guiding the sirens, then luckily managed to defeat it, acquired its materials, the Kaiser Tortoiseshell, and safely returned to the ship after about an hour.

Yup, 100% honest, no lies.

… I did feel a bit guilty when the sailors hugged me with tears in their eyes when I got back, though.

Ah, by the way, after that, when I used the Kaiser Archelon’s meat in a collagen hotpot and ate it, I also got skills like [Underwater Movement I], [Water Cannon], [Expanded Lungs II], [Intimidate Aquatic Creatures], [Increased Physical Defense – Large], and some others.

Mr. Turtle was truly very generous. The end.


Author’s notes:

The whole shell of the Kaiser Archelon was indeed too large to carry along even while using the magical bag, so after Shiori took the necessary parts, she asked the sirens to keep the remains for her.

Also, the lyrics sung to the sirens in this chapter does not actually exist. Though I did use a real song as the model… or to be more precise, I mimicked the atmosphere of the song.

As usual, below are stats of Shiori’s products:

——

Shamisen [Songdancer Enhanced]

Type: Shamisen (Medium Neck)

Attack Power 0

Basic Stats Intelligence +1

Basic Stats Charm +1

Mental Status Effects Resistance +30%

Damage Received from Sound Attacks Reduced by 50%

Bonus to Musical Performances +50%

Bonus to Singing +30%

Bonus to Chanting (Chanting Failure Rate -50%)

When performing, the performer’s music and singing can reach any location within 1 kilometer.

Kaiser Archelon Pick

Attack Power 69

Critical Rate +30%

Bonus to Performances with Stringed Instruments +30%


Footnotes:
1. Merrows are mermaid/mermen in Irish folklore.

Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Arachne – 6

Siren – First Part


The stagecoach shook and rattled.

My butt jumped off the floor and slammed back down whenever the carriage hit a bump.

Man, humans really are amazing. How can they handle this sort of transportation without even breaking a sweat?

If I were a normal human being, I think my butt would have been in pieces by now. Totally.

Yes, welcome back. The spider monster womanArachne, Arakura Shiori (24), is here.

And if you can remember me as the owner of Arachne Tailor, Shiori Arachne, I would be very much honored.

To speak of my whereabouts, currently, I am on the path leading to the port city, Jiza. To be precise, I’m inside of the stagecoach going there.

For a stagecoach with a capacity of 8 passengers, it was quite empty. Aside from me, there’s only a pair of mother and daughter, plus a man in his thirties.

Of the mother-daughter pair, the girl looked to be around 7 years old. Perhaps because she’s not used to the horrible shaking of the carriage, she seemed extremely distressed, and it wouldn’t be surprising if she started crying at any moment now.

“Mom… Mommy… My butt huuuuurtsss…”

“Endure it. Weren’t you the one who wanted to go to the town?”

“B-Buuuut… Uuuu…”

Her eyes were pretty much flooded already.

True, this carriage was shaking terribly. It’s a bit too rough for children, I think.

I did want to help somehow… but I didn’t have any springs or rubber tires.

If there were at least some cushions… Ah, wait.

I did have them. Cushions.

I put my hand inside the large hemp bag that I’m using to carry around my musical instrument, and started to create threads from my fingertips.

I granted the threads some viscosity, then wove them into a fine sheet of fabric.

Next, I knitted the cloth into the shape of a bag, then shrunk the bag’s opening.

Viscous threads would harden and turn into a material similar to rubber after some ten-odd seconds or so. When they do, my air cushion will be finished.

One disadvantage is that the threads I create from my fingers don’t last for very long.

After a month, its composition will change, and the fabric will deteriorate.

Well, it’s just for the duration of the ride anyway. There shouldn’t be a problem.

The threads I create from my butt can last for quite a long time… In fact, it seems like they won’t degrade even after several hundred years, so if the cushion I made here is well received, I’ll think about adding it to my line of products.

First, let’s see how the little girl like my test prototype.

“…Excuse me. If you don’t mind, please try using this.”

I pretended to take my home-made air cushion out from the bag as if it has always been there, and give it to the mother.

“Thank you, umm, what is this?”

“Yes, this is a prototype for one of our store’s products. First, you’ll need to blow air into it.”

*Pfffffff*… When the girl saw me using all my strength to inflate the cushion, her eyes lit up.

“Waaaaa!! What’s that?! Looks funny!!”

“This thing is, *pfffff*… supposed to be like this… *pfffff*… And done!”

Once the bag filled up with air, I tied up the opening to finish the job. It looked like a thick seat cushion that’s about to burst.

“Here, this is for you. Put it under your seat.”

“Y-Yes… Like this?”

“Right, that’s it. How is it?”

“… Amazing, it doesn’t hurt at all! Mommy, this is really fluffy!”

“… My, my… No air escapes this bag at all… J-Just what is this made of?”

Alright. The girl’s mood got better instantly, so I could consider this a success for now.

“Excuse me, umm, can we really have this…?”

“Yes, please take it as an advertising gift, since this is the prototype for a new product of our store. I think this cushion will only last for around a month, but the official product should last for years.”

“Store…?”

“I’m sorry for my belated introduction. I am Shiori Arachne, owner of the Arachne Tailor.”

“Oh my… That recently famous shop…? Which reminds me, I’ve heard people said that a girl who looks just like an angel is running that store!”

“A-Angel…”

It wouldn’t be a problem if I were an actual kid, but mentally I’m an adult woman.

Anyone would feel embarrassed if people told them they’re an angel, and I’m no exception.

“Oh? Miss, I thought you were a bard like me. Turns out I was wrong.”

The man in his thirties talked to me.

The good-looking lady-killer with brown hair was wearing some slightly gaudy clothes colored red-white, and in his hands was a harp.

“There, that thing peeking out of the bag. I haven’t seen anything like it before, but it’s a stringed instrument, right? I was convinced that you were also in the same trade as me.”

“Aaahh… You’re talking about this shami-… this instrument? It’s just something like a hobby to me…”

“Hobby?”

“Well, something like that.”

While giving some vague reply to the bard, I recalled the happenings of last night.

“Aaaaaaaaahhh… Nothing to dooooo…”

I unintentionally let slip a complaint while lying on the bed.

My work is going well, so normally I don’t have any free time…

But the problem is that I have nothing to do during the holidays, or when I close my shop for the day.

Since this world doesn’t have BL… ahem, light novels or television or the internet.

When I’m not working, I have absolutely no way to pass the time.

“So something to do beside those things… Karaoke? Yeah, that’s a no go…”

Hmm, what’s next?

A hobby that I was doing back in that world that I can also do here would be… embroidery… but I’m doing that as my work now.

A long time ago, I did learn to play some Japanese traditional instrument for a little while… But this world doesn’t have those instruments.

“Hmm? If it doesn’t exist, can’t I just make it…? Luckily, I can use my threads as the strings… Hmmm…”

Once the idea popped up, I immediately got to work.

I jumped right off the bed and grabbed some materials from the storeroom that looked like they might be useful.

“If I remember correctly, the neck and body was made from the slightly hard type of narra wood, I think…? Then let’s use some fully grown Sword Wood… Ivory for the string winders? …  The fangs from a Stampede Beast should work as a replacement. The bridge and the pick would be made from… tortoiseshell… turtles, is it… Adamantite Turtle materials… oh, I’m out of that. No wonder, I don’t often go hunt aquatic monsters. So for the time being, let’s use some hard wood… Rosewood would do… Then I’ll think about the shell once I get them, yeah. Next is the skin. I think it’s normally made from skins of a small animal like a dog or cat, was it? Then the skin of a Firefox should be fine.”

I voiced my decisions on the construction of the instrument out loud, while using my claws to cut and shave the materials at the same time.

Just like always, my sticky threads worked perfectly fine as an adhesive, and the creation of the instrument went quickly.

Possibly because I was absorbed in the work, two hours went by in a blink of an eye, and this traditional Japanese stringed instrument with a long neck and a slightly small body – a shamisen – was almost complete.

“And finally, stringing it up. A shamisen’s string is made from multiple threads of silk, so my threadArachne silk is exactly the best material to use… And done!”

Well, it’s not like I ever made a shamisen back in my old world… I only learned to play it as a hobby, so what I created was only a ‘shamisen-ish thing’.

It’s probably good enough to pass the time with.

And so, I got right to it and played a few songs.

Personally, instead of those performances specifically written for the shamisen, I actually prefer enka, so let’s begin with enka songs such as Kita 〇 Yado kara or Tsugaru Kaikyou Fuyu〇shiki!

.

.

.

.

.

.

Whoa!

I completely lost track of time.

It was in the evening when I began making the shamisen.

And right now, dawn was already breaking.

Which mean I pretty much played and sang throughout the night.

The sound-proof barrier covering this work room is always active, so I probably didn’t annoy any of my neighbors…

Oh man, enka really is nice. That unique sort of vibrato1 just sends shivers down my spine.

But, yeah… I really wanted to use tortoiseshell for the pick and those other parts.

Perhaps because I used good materials, but this shamisen-ish thing almost managed to replicate the sound of an actual shamisen, even though I just made up the design as I went.

Which just made it all the more frustrating!

If only I could make the bridge and the pick out of tortoiseshell, just how much better would it sound?!

Once that thought showed up in my mind, I could no longer sit still.

“Right, once morning comes, let’s go to the sea. There should be several species of turtle-type magical beasts living in the ocean.”

After hanging a ‘Temporarily Closed’ sign on the shop door, I began to make my preparations to go to the port town of Jiza.

…And that was why I’m currently being rocked back and forth inside of this stagecoach.

To be honest, running in Arachne form would be far faster, but doing that on the road in broad daylight is obviously out of the question.

“Hmmm, I was hoping you can perform a song for me, since I’ve never seen that instrument before… but it looks like we’ve already arrived at Jiza. Miss, do you have any business in town?”

The traveling bard guy’s eyes were sparkling with curiosity.

Yeah, just like a little kid’s.

Maybe because of his occupation as a bard?

“…No, after this, I plan on getting on a ship to Shuren island.”

The island of Shuren is about half as big as Japan’s Sadogashima2.

There are constant ships going from Jiza to the island, and trade between the two is well developed.

…Of course, my objective lies between the town and the island, in an area of reef called the “Dead Ocean”, a holy site for oceanic monsters. My plan is to silently disappear from the ship mid-way through.

My destination is quite far from the path the ship takes, so I’ll have to swim for quite a distance, but I have no other choice. Ships can’t get inside this reef full of rocks.

The ship will just get stranded if it tries to force its way in.

“Oh, you too, miss? I’m also going to Shuren island. So we’ll be accompanying each other for a little while longer.”

“Yes, so it seems.”

“Well, let’s get along… My name is Harn. A traveling bard, Harn Trad.”

He smiled, showing rows of pure white teeth, and stretched out his hand.

When I gingerly grabbed it, he tightly squeezed my hand and gave me a few vigorous shake.

“S-Shiori Ara-rachne. S-Stop, bit my t-tongue!”

“Ah, whoops, sorry! So your name is Sshiori Ararachne then!”

“… It’s Shiori Arachne.”

“Oh, sorries. Shiori!”

“Aaaah… Well, nice to meet you, I guess.”

Looks like the world has forced a traveling companion upon me.

“Sis, thaaaaanks! ♪”

The destination of the pair of mother and daughter whom I’ve given the air cushion to was in Jiza, so they parted with us near the harbor.

Seemed like the girl really liked that cushion. She hugged it close to her chest, even when it was time for us to say goodbye, and energetically waved her hand. So cute.

Her mother also bowed to me repeatedly as they left.

“…Right, let’s get on the scheduled ship, miss. It should leave soon.”

“Indeed. The weather is good too, it seems today is a good day for a voyage.”

“…Yeah, it’ll be good if that was so.”

Harn didn’t look happy, somehow.
Perhaps there’s something weighing on his mind.

While occupied with thoughts about the bard, I followed him and got on the ship.


Footnotes:
1. A sort of quavering voice, often seen in enka.
2. Sadogashima is around 850 square kilometers, so half that.

Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Arachne – 5

Pygmalion


“Hungryyyyy…”

I continued to feebly walk inside the Forest of Glamour using my huge spider legs – what I called my Arachne form, so to speak.

The last time I had something in my stomach was 2 days ago.

I can make water with magic by condensing the moisture in the air, so water isn’t a problem, but I was absolutely lacking the calories needed to maintain this magical beastArachne body.

Aaaaahhh… That’s right, might as well do my usual self-introduction here.

Well, to put it simply, I, Arakura Shiori (24), was working at a flower shop in a city, when a runaway truck slammed into the store and killed me. After that, I happily reincarnated in Falyias, a fantasy world of swords and sorcery.

As a half-human half-spider monster called an Arachne.

…Well, I ran into a lot of trouble with that as one of the reasons, but now I’m making my living by running a tailor shop in the nearby town of Rihak.

Luckily, manipulating threads – the special skill of my race – is my forte, and turning into a human is also quite simple, so I haven’t had any problem living here.

The shop is doing well too.

And so, the reason why I’m here is because 5 days ago, some bigshot noble came to my shop and ordered some sentient magical clothingan Intelligent Robe.

Apparently, his son said “I’m going to be an adventurer!” and simply wouldn’t budge from his decision.

And then, when the noble tried to convince him to bring along some escorts, he replied “No adventurer would do something so shameful!” and rejected that idea… Finally, after a long discussion, his son reluctantly agreed to a compromise, which was to wear some sentient magical clothingan Intelligent Robe with the memories of a veteran adventurer copied inside it.

And so, they’ve decided that since they’re going to go through the trouble anyway, they might as well go to the Arachne Tailor that’s been making waves lately. In other words, my shop.

And that’s how I received another order. Thank you for your patronage.

Well, my shop wouldn’t have any problems making a robe that would satisfy the noble’s defensive need, but the issue is making it a ‘sentient magical itemIntelligent Item’.

Actually, the process of putting an artificial intelligence into weapons and armor requires a critical material, which is a ‘Spirit Stone’… According to the adventurer guild’s information dealer, “There has been reported cases of finding crystallized Spirit Stones inside the bodies of magical beasts living in the Forest of Glamour, a place bountiful with the spirits’ blessings”, which is why I’d been venturing inside the forest since 3 days ago.

However, one problem I didn’t expect was that… the magical beasts here are too low-level.

Since only magical beasts at a certain level of strength create Spirit Stones inside their bodies, I had been running around the whole forest hunting every single boss-class beast I came upon, and managed to acquire 1 large stone and 3 smaller stones after all that.
The large stone is especially valuable. I only got it by venturing deep inside the forest and defeating the Marionette Devil, the lord of this area.

The Marionette Devil is a high-rank monster. As you can guess from the name, this devil can create and control different kinds of dolls, using them to fight in its stead.

The devil itself wasn’t that powerful, but the nigh-endless Jack Dolls it summoned were incredibly troublesome.

Well, even though the dolls weren’t edible – no surprises there – their boss was quite tasty. I even got a new skill, so all in all, this was a good hunt. (Just like a lot of those monstrously powerful reincarnators, I can also acquire a part of my prey’s powers by eating them.)

But then, I realized a problem.

“…How do I go home?”

This forest is so large and complex that it gained the name ‘Forest of Glamour’.

Furthermore, the space inside of it is subtly distorted, so you can’t use teleportation items or magic.

And since I just randomly plunged inside the forest without sparing a single thought for anything else aside from hunting monsters… Well, not getting lost would be stranger.

Since I could only find weaklings in the outer forest area, I just kept on going deeper and deeper, which only helped create my current situation.

If this was a forest where I can find decently strong magical beasts wandering around (which it isn’t, unfortunately), then I can just hunt and eat them while finding my way out.

There’s a reason for my confidence. I can say for sure that my current stats already surpasses the demon king’sBaramos-class monsters’.

Perhaps I’m even as powerful as the Great Demon LordZoma-class monsters.

Mob-monster-level magical beasts – and normal animals too, of course – don’t even dare to get close when they sense my presence.

There’s no longer a single living soul in a radius of a few hundred meters around me.

The last thing I ate was the aforementioned Marionette Devil.

If I had known that this would’ve happened, I would have wrapped it up in my threads and brought it with me instead of leaving the devil half-eaten.

That monster was quite big, so I could have lasted for a whole week if I had brought it along…

*stomach rumbling…*

“Ah, no more… I can’t move…?”

Just when I finally couldn’t take it anymore and slumped onto the ground from my empty stomach, the [Detect Presence] skill discovered something alive.

There’s almost no magic in them, but they’re quite large, as large as a medium-sized or a big-sized dog.

And not only that, there’s 5 of them.

“F-Food…”

Just when I thought I could no longer move a muscle, my limbs were instantly reinvigorated. Seems like I’m quite easily moved by desires.

“Foooooood~♪”

*Crack* *KRRRRRRAKKRAKRAK!* *BOOOM!* *BLAM!*

I rushed straight towards that ‘presence of life’, while pulverizing all the trees and boulders barring my way…

After following that ‘presence of life’ for a while, the trees began to get noticeably sparser.

The thick forest started to give way to open lands, and I could finally see the bright, shining sun again.

And most importantly, those presences of life were just a few steps away.

I gathered up strength in my eight legs and leaped forward with the intent to strike at those presences.

At that moment, I noticed that my prey has looked up at me, seemingly surprised.

They wore leather armor, with short swords in their hands. Men.

Huh?! Humans?!

Oh no, this is bad, brake, braaaaaaaaake!!

Even when I jammed the claws on my legs into a nearby tree trunk in an attempt to slow down, *BAM!* *Krrrkkrrkkkrrrsshhhh…* that strange sound came from the aforementioned tree being torn apart like a piece of paper.

Of course, that wasn’t enough to completely kill my momentum, and I slammed right into the men, who were standing there in a line.

With expressions of shock on their faces, they scattered like bowling pins.

“Ouch-chie ouch… S-Sorry! Are you okay?!”

I immediately activated the skill [Human Transformation], turned into my human form, and tried to shake the men’s bodies one by one.

…Aaaaahhh… Damn. They’re completely unconscious.

In fact, most of them already had their arms and legs twisted into some impossible directions. I don’t know if they can move at all, even if they woke up.

For the time being, I picked a flat spot of grassland, dragged the men there, and lined them up next to each other.

One, two, three, four… Four of them in total.

But still, how curious.

It’s not my place to say this, considering how I was the culprit for their current state, but both their clothing and faces just made them look like a gang of bandits.

“Ah, excuse me… Thank you very much! These bandits were just about to kidnap me…”

“Eh…?”

When I turned toward that childish voice, I found a boy with blonde hair, around 10 years old, staring at me with shining eyes.

“Eh, bandits? Huh?”

“Y-Yes, recently, some bandits settled down near the village… They occasionally came to our village to steal or kidnap children… I nearly became another victim when they found me while I was going herb gathering…”

So it turned out that they don’t just look like bandits, they ARE bandits!

“If you hadn’t come at that time, I would have… *hic*…”

*sobs* *sobs*. The little boy tried his best to unsuccessfully contain his tears.

My god, what is this cute creature?

They’re seriously honest-to-goodness angels, these Western-looking kids (this isn’t Earth, though…)

Wait, I’m not here to look at cute kids, am I?

Seemed like I crashed the party right when these 4 bandits were attempting to kidnap a child.

…Oh yeah, I DID detect 5 presences before, didn’t I?

Dear me, and here I was, panicking a little bit since I thought I accidentally injured some innocent villagers. If they’re bandits, though, it probably won’t be a problem.

And it also looked like he didn’t realize that I was in my Arachne form when I bursted in, since everything happened so suddenly.

*Grrrrrrrumbleeeee…*

Right when I relaxed, my stomach reminded me of its current emptiness with a magnificent growl.

I unconsciously held my belly and dropped down on the ground.

Yeaaahhh, now that I think about it, the situation still hasn’t gotten any better at all.

No matter how evil those bandits were, eating humans is simply out of the question.

“E-Excuse me… Sis, are you hungry?”

“Y-Yeah… Actually, I’ve already been lost for 2 days now… and haven’t gotten anything to eat at all… Ahahah… haha…”

“T-Then… Please eat this, if you’re fine with this sort of food.”

The boy rummaged inside the sack that he had with him, and finally took out something wrapped in cloth and gave it to me.

What is this…? This is… the smell of food!!

Without thinking, my hands instantly moved to snatch that package. I didn’t even have the patience to open up the knot, so I used my nails to tear it apart and take out the food wrapped inside.

Oooooooohhh…! Marvelous!!

Inside were some rye bread and jerky.

There’s also some kind of fruit similar to an apple and a flask of water.

I took them in both of my hands and took a big bite.

*chomp* *chomp* *munch* *nom* *nom *nom*

Normally, you would soak the hard rye bread in water and chew it off a bit at a time, but don’t underestimate my jaw strength.

I may look like a dainty little girl, but my true strength is that of the high-rank magical beast called Arachne.

The hard bread simply got torn apart like a marshmallow and disappeared in my mouth.

That apple-ish fruit was also gone with just two bites, and I practically drank the jerky.

Even though that wasn’t exactly a small amount of food, it didn’t even take 1 minute for them to all go to my stomach.

“Haaaaa… I’m aliveeeee… Thank you for the food!”

I slapped my hands together in a bow and gazed upon the shreds of cloth that used to be the wrapping.

And I realized something.

Umm, might it be, perhaps, this was the boy’s meal?

“Uhhh… Sorry… I was too hungry… This was your meal, right? Sorry, I ate all of it…”

“Please don’t worry. You saved my life, after all… And this much wouldn’t be enough to repay my debt at all! I may not have much to give you, but please come and visit my house!”

“E-Eh? Can I?”

“Yes, if you’re fine with rye bread, I still have a lot left! Please come and have a rest!”

And so it came to be that the boy named Zell dragged me to a small, nameless village that lies inside the forest’s outer area.

The village truly is a small one. Its population doesn’t even reach a hundred…

Their livelihoods are mainly gathering in the forest and planting wheat. Because they live near the abundant Forest of Glamour blessed by the spirits, their harvests are always bountiful, and nobody ever needs to worry about their meal for the next day. Considering the region, such a village is quite uncommon.

However, at the same time, I heard that the damage they receive from magical beasts’ attacks are worse than the other villages’ due to their proximity to the forest.

And not only that, the village was targeted by that gang of bandits.

These last few years, they had been making sporadic attacks towards the village, leeching from the people while making sure to never go overboard.

“…Well, there’s that, too… We tried to stop Zell, but he didn’t listen and rushed off to pick the expensive herbs that grow deep inside the forest.”

Zerron, the village chief and also Zell’s father, summarized and explained the situation for me.

He’s a good looking middle-aged man with deep blond hair.

“But dad… We can get quite a bit selling the herbs at the town… and if the bandits come, there’ll be injured people…”

“But if you died because of that, there’s no meaning, is there? Just how sad would your mother in heaven be?”

“Y-Yes… I’m sorry…”

Zell gloomily hanged his head.

“Sorry, we shouldn’t be talking about this in front of our benefactor. Please, feel free to eat as much as you want.”

“T-Thank you very much…”

Seemed like Zell told Zerron that I was quite starved.

The amount of food currently served in front of me is obviously not what a young girl can eat in one sitting.

Of course, this family seemed to lack a woman’s touch, so more than half of these dishes were what you would call ‘a guy’s cooking’… In order to prepare this feast, they probably had to use up a lot of their reserves. Considering how frequently bandits show up these days, it’s not an amount they can afford to waste.

… Really, just what did Zell say about me?

“Still, a magician at such a young age. Your training must have been quite severe.”

Zerron’s eyes shined with respect.

I brought the bandits, tied up in a long chain using my threads, with me when I visited his house. Since it seemed like his jaw was about to vacate his face when he saw them, I made up a barely-believable excuse: “I had been training to become a magician ever since I was young, so…”

“And then, and then, listen, dad, it’s amazing! After that, Miss Shiori here went *BOOM* and flew out! And when the dust settled, all of the bandits were already defeated!”

“Hohohh, that is amazing… If someone like Miss Shiori can come and live at our village, no bandits would dare to meddle with us again.”

“Let’s do that! Miss Shiori, I’m going to do my best and work to get a lot of money… And when I’m rich, I’ll support you, so please marry me!”

“M-Marry?!”

“Hahah, Zell, you like Shiori?”

“Yes, I love her! ♪”

“Hahah, then you’ll need to quickly grow up and become a respectable adult first!”

“Yes!”

Wahahahah, including my last life, this was the first time I’ve ever been proposed to.

But even if I marry Zell in the future and have children with him… the kids will probably be Arachne monsters.

Once that happens, there’s absolutely no way I can continue to live in a human village.

“Sorry, Zell, I’m running a tailor in the town of Rihak. I can’t come here and be your wife, alright?”

And that’s the only answer I can give. Yeah, no other choice.

“Awww, really?”

“Hahah, don’t be unreasonable, Zell. But if you absolutely cannot give up on Miss Shiori, then you should strive to become someone who can get her to fall for you first, and then propose again!”

“…Y-Yes, I’ll do my best! In helping with the farmwork and in studying, too!”

“That’s right, that’s the spirit!”

My, how positive.

Anyway, we finished up our peaceful dinner while making such idle talk. Zerron lent me the bed that his wife once used when she was alive, and I retired for the night.

“Hmm, so the main problem is that nobody knows where the bandits are coming from…”

I flopped down on the straw mat bed while thinking about the bandits.

As long as I know where their base is, exterminating the bandits won’t be a problem… However, I don’t.

And at the same time, I can’t afford to leave the shop alone and stay at this village forever.

“So the village pretty much just needs some bodyguards… They don’t need to be as strong as I am, but enough to drive away any bandits… Hmmm.”

If so, then I can probably do something about it.

I jumped off the bed, took off the pajamas borrowed from Zerron, and got naked.

And then, I deactivated the [Human Transformation] skill.

My lower half quickly enlarged, grew new legs, and turned into the body of a snow-white spider.

Next, 6 eyes, bright red like rubies, popped up on my forehead

I can still use my mouth or my fingertips to create the kind of thread that I normally use in combat, but this type of thread degrades faster and isn’t suitable for making durable, long-lasting fabric.

As I thought, the thread that comes from my butt is still the best material to use when making cloth products.

“So first off is…”

I took out the 3 small Spirit Stones that I got from the forest this time. They won’t be necessary in making the commissioned robe.

And then, I pointed my butt towards the stones and wrapped them in threadsArachne Silk.

Once the wrapping is thick enough – around the size of a watermelon for each stone – I stopped creating threads…

“And now, the most important thing in today’s project… [Doll Creation]Pygmalion.”

This is the new skill that I gained from eating the Marionette Devil.

The skill can ‘create dolls capable of fighting’ under the user’s control.

After I activated the skill, the three watermelon-sized balls of thread began to morph… until finally, they became three knitted dolls, their shapes stabilizing into something that look like super-deformed girls.

“And finally, copying a part of my consciousness into the Spirit Stones to turn them into sentient magical toolsIntelligent Items…”

And that marked the completion of the village’s guardians, the three knitted Arachne sisters!

Hey, come out, whoever that just said “Isn’t that Stone ●●ee?”. I need to talk to you.

They are knitted dolls.

I may have gotten a bit overexcited… and granted them resistance to slashing damage and resistance to all elements and bonuses to attack damage and abilities to create magical shields and stealth abilities and backstab skills and Paralyze Breath and that sort of stuff!

BUT. THEY. ARE. JUST. KNITTED. DOLLS.

They’re knitted dolls, so there’s no problem with giving them to the village to show my thanks for the feast, right?

The next day.

Zerron and Zell was sending me off at the village entrance.

I asked them the way home, so really, there’s nothing else keeping me here.

However, finding a way to say goodbye to the boy Zell, who was grabbing onto my skirt with tears in his eyes, was probably my biggest challenge of the day.

“Big sis… Do you really have to go…?”

“Yes, sorry… I have a job at the town… But I’ll give you these instead. Treasure them, okay?”

“Yes! I’ll think of them as you and treasure these dolls! I already thought about their names, too!”

“Oh? What names are you giving them?”

“The red one is Flare, the blue one is Frozen, the yellow one is Gaia!”

My, my, not bad. The names even fit their different elemental attacks.

To be precise, the attack skills that I granted them were shooting a beam of fire, breathing ice, and dropping boulders, respectively.

“Yeah, those are good names! Well then, Flare, Frozen, Gaia. Protect this kid and this village, alright?”

“Yes, Master Shiori. We will protect Master Zell and this village.”

I’m the only one who could hear their replies, but I designated Zell as their secondary master, so they should listen to his orders.

Even in the rare case that the bandits show up again, the village should be fine.

And then, I left the village behind me, even as I look back to see the two of them still hesitating to let me go.

 

 

Several years later.

That village became famous as the village guarded by ‘the miraculous invincible dolls’. In the end, many golem masters and doll makers gathered there, helping it grow into a village of doll makers… but that is a story for another time.


Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Arachne – 4

The Red Shoe


Arachne Tailor.

This is a tailor shop under the sole management of Shiori Arachne – me.

…Actually, I said ‘a tailor shop’, but it’s been turning into something more like an armor shop these days.

Well, the past Shiori living on Earth would never have imagined that she would one day be running a tailor or an armor shop, anyway.

So by that line of thinking, you can say that there isn’t much of a difference between selling clothes or selling armor…

Ah, I need to introduce myself, don’t I?

I, Arakura Shiori (24), was working at a florist in a city, when a runaway truck slammed into the store and killed me. After that, I happily reincarnated in Falyias, a fantasy world of swords and sorcery.

As a half-human half-spider monster called an Arachne.

…Well, I ran into a lot of trouble with that as one of the reasons, but now I’m making my living by running the aforementioned tailor shop in the town of Rihak.

Luckily, manipulating threads – the special skill of my race – is my forte, and turning into a human is also quite simple, so I haven’t had any problem living here.

The shop is doing well too.

…And so, today I continue to spin threads and weave cloths, just like every other day.

*rustles* *rustles*…

A new day, when the sun still hasn’t completely shown its face.

In the back of my shop, inside a workroom with ‘Outsiders Absolutely Not Allowed’ written on the door, I wound my thread between two poles.

The poles themselves are about as long and thick as a laundry pole, and both of their ends are tightly embedded in the wall.

And I have two of those poles. They are mounted on the walls of this room, like a pair of gymnastic uneven parallel bars.

…Before, I used to wind my threads between my two front legs, but I can’t make large sheets of fabric by using my legs like that.

Which is why I set up those poles in the workroom explicitly for that purpose. Now, I use them to wind my threads and make sheets of cloth.

That way, I can weave larger sheets, and further raise the quality of the fabric as well as make it smoother.

“Phew. That’s about it, I guess?”

After finishing the 20th sheet, I decided to stop here for now.

I’m using my thread as the material, after all. Since my own physical condition affects the quality of the thread, working too much is out of the question.

*Snap*. I cut off the flow of thread coming from my lower spider half and uses my knife-like claw to neatly cut the sheet of Arachne silk that has been perfectly woven between the two poles.

I carefully put the sheet onto a shelf and return to my human form.

If I keep using my spider form all the time, in the very rare case that someone sees me, there’s going to be a huge commotion.

Which is why I’m making this Arachne silk, the lifeblood of my shop, way early in the morning and in a room at the back of the shop, all hush-hush like.

“Nnnnn… Tuuurn into a human, tuuuuurn into a human… Mmmmm…”

When I close my eyes and focus on transforming, the skill [Human Transformation] activates.

*Sssssssshlup!* My enormous lower spider half shrinks and turns into two porcelain-white legs, while six of my eyes (I’m a spider, so I’ve got 8 eyes in total!), red and sparkling like rubies, also sink with a *plop* and disappear inside my forehead.

I intentionally made my dress loose enough to adequately cover my body down to my legs even when I turn into a human, so there’s never a moment when I’m indecently exposed. It’s a wonderful piece of clothing.

By the way, in human form, I look like a beautiful silver-haired 12-13 year old girl. Though I guess that just sounds like I’m praising myself.

Anyway, I still haven’t reached one in terms of my physical age, while mentally I’m 24 years old. My age is a bit of a mess, so I’d appreciate it if you can leave the subject be…

“Soooo, next is… dye 8 sheets black with Ravenfeather Ivies… dye 6 sheets light-purple with Horsetrap Violets… dye 4 sheets brown with juice taken from Mystic Persimmon fruits… and dye 2 sheets red with crushed Crimson Dragon scales.”

By the way, these dyes are all made from materials which can only be acquired in A~S rank danger zones.

These super high rank materials are so precious that if they’re gathered in any significant quantity, just one milk bottle filled with the stuff can be equivalent to one small gold coin, or about 5000 kram (around 500,000 Japanese yen).

However, their effects are truly worth the price. They can be used to add extra enchantments to clothing. For example, Ravenfeather Ivy’s effect is an increase in speed and dodging ability for the wearer. Clothes made with it are highly popular among front-line adventurers who focus on speed, such as thieves and rangers.

Similarly, Horsetrap Violets can raise one’s strength, while Mystic Persimmon juice can raise magical power.

And Crimson Dragon scales can–

“Go away, brat!”

“Aaah!!”

An angry shout, a scream, then a *thud*, like the sound of something hitting the ground.

The spell of silence of the early morning suddenly ended, just like that.

It wasn’t so loud that normal people can hear them from inside their houses, but I didn’t have any problems catching their voices. I’m still more or less a high-rank monster called an Arachne, after all.

Even my hearing is superb, far surpassing a normal human’s.

“My place is a high-class store serving nobles here! It ain’t somewhere a dirty urchin like you can approach!”

“I-I’m sorry, I’m sorry…”

I hurry outside my shop after hearing the voice, seemingly full of fear, of a young girl.

And there, in front of another store diagonally opposite my shop – Elrond Shoemaker, if I remember correctly – is Elrond, the owner, arrogantly standing as if he owns the whole town. The target of his glare is a young girl with her butt on the ground.

“What happened?”

I speak to Elrond while trying my best to remain calm.

Elrond is a black-haired middle-aged man, wearing some posh-looking clothes.

His high-class shoe store receives orders from even nobles, so Elrond himself wears quite the gaudy sort of clothing, far from being something you’d imagine a craftsman to wear.

…Well, whether or not such clothes suit that huge bear with a beer belly is another story, though.

“Haaahhh?! Don’t stick your nose where it doesn’t belong, kid… Wait, you’re that Arachne Tailor’s… Yeah, you don’t need to worry. This homeless brat was just about to touch my merchandise with her dirty hands, so I’m just doing a bit of educating.”

In fact, my shop not only receives orders from nobles, but even from royalties and S-rank adventurers, so I’m currently standing on top of the craftsmen’s hierarchy.

He knows that if he carelessly angers me, there’s no knowing what sort of complaints I’ll be sending to the big-shots… Well, it’s not like I’m going to do that, though.

“N… No… I was just looking… I wasn’t thinking of touching them…”

The girl refuted while still sitting on the ground. Elrond’s face turns tomato-red, and his foot connects with her body.

“Like hell I can trust you! You’re going to filch and sell off the merchandise I put near the counter anyway, aren’t you?!”

*cough*… No… I’m not…”

“That’s enough, isn’t it? You’re going too far.”

“Ain’t got nothing to do with you! If I leave them alone, they’re just going to come back even worse the next day! Gotta make sure they don’t… Wha?!”

In the middle of his persistent kicking, Elrond’s legs suddenly stop in the air.

“That’s right, that’s right. Like people say, all things in moderation. Thank you for your understanding.”

“Eh?… Wait, hey, why are my legs… I can’t move?!”

“Oh my? Maybe it’s because you haven’t used those muscles for a long time, and they got cramped up?”

“C-Cramps? Really? Fuck… Come on, move…”

Taking my words for the truth, Elrond sits on the ground and furiously massages his immobile legs.

Obviously, there’s no cramping involved here.

He simply got tied to the shop’s pillar by my extremely thin spider threads.

The threads are so small you normally can’t see them unless you really focus your eyes. Furthermore, they’re stronger than steel wires.

Elrond won’t be able to get them off no matter how much he tries… Well, I set those threads to automatically release him 3 hours later, so he’ll just have to endure until then.

I brought the girl back to my own shop to treat her bruises and bleeding nose and the like. Her injuries were rather severe.

Even now, she’s still dizzy and not entirely conscious. I sit her down on a chair and take off her clothes to check her injuries.

Her shirt and pants are pretty much just rags now, and she doesn’t seem to be even wearing underwear, so I quietly extend my claws and snappily cut open her clothes.

Because it’s just troublesome to take them off one by one.

“Hah?! Eh?! Nooo!!”

Right when I just finished removing her shirt and was continuing to her bottom, light finally returned to her eyes, and she crouched down and covered her chest with both arms. She seemed to have realized what’s going on.

“Come on, don’t make such a fuss. I’m just looking at your wounds… and treating them, that’s all!”

“T-Treatment? Ah, but this is my only good set of clothes…”

“Heehee, just where do you think you are?! I’ve got more clothes than you can shake a stick at! Come now, just be obedient and stay still ♪”

“Hyaaaaaaa?!”

In no time at all, I cut off her pants, leaving the halfway-panicking girl naked.

“Ah, uuuuu…”

“All right, first is disinfection. [Light, cleanse my body]Clean Body.

The light shining from my hand gently envelops the girl’s body and cleans off all the dirt.

This is one type of magic used in daily life. It can wipe the dirt off your skin.

“There we go. You’re actually injured all over the place, you just couldn’t see it before because of the dirt and grime. I’ll bandage you up, so just sit still and stop looking so embarrassed.”

Once more, I make her sit on the chair and start bandaging her.

“S-Sorry… it kind of feels really nice to the touch, these bandages.”

“Of course they are, they’re made from Arachne silk.”

“A-Arachne silk!! Isn’t it that super-high rank material made from a spider monster’s threads?!”

“Mmm, I don’t know about it being super-high rank or anything, but it IS Arachne silk. What about it?”

I made these bandages beforehand with my threads, so it’s pretty much free, though.

“S-Sorry! I’m really sorry! Please don’t waste your precious materials on me, I-I don’t have anything to pay for the treatment cost…”

“Doooon’t worry about it. It’s just something I made from leftover cloth.”

Despite the girl’s excessive hesitation, I force her to sit still and continue to wrap my silk bandages around her wounds.

Actually, this kind of bandages can help heal wounds better than normal cloth bandages.

Maybe it’s because it’s made from organic matter, similar to how an egg’s membrane can be used to dress wounds…?

Anyway, after her body is almost completely covered in bandages (aside from the wounds inflicted by Elrond, she also has a lot of scratch wounds all over the places), as the finishing touch, I secretly cast [Spirit Enchantment].

[Spirit Enchantment] isn’t considered healing magic, but it can help make wounds heal extremely fast. With injuries like these, she just needed to sleep for a whole day and her body should be just like new again.

After the treatment is finished, I can finally relax, so I’ve decided to ask her about her situation.

When I introduce myself as the owner of this Arachne Tailor, she seems surprised for a moment, but then quickly pulls her knees together, gives me a bow, and politely give her thanks for the medical care.

Her conduct is quite elegant, her every single movement beautiful.

“I apologize for my belated gratitude and introduction. My name is Elisyne von Astrade.”

What a surprise. It seems she used to be the daughter of a baron.

Now that she mentioned it, she does seem to have a certain graceful air about her once I’m done cleaning her up.

She has straight, flowing golden hair, deep green eyes, white skin, and soft fingers. And her proportions also aren’t half bad.

In fact, I would say that over 90 out of 100 people would consider her cute.

When I ask her about the reason why the daughter of a baron was in such dire straits, she hangs her head and begins to tell her story in a halting voice.

Apparently, generation after generation, her house had been doing well thanks to their military contributions. However, not long ago, her father was severely injured in a battle with magical beasts

His treatment costed a lot of money, but since her house was just a simple family of warriors in the first place, they didn’t have much in their savings.

In the end, the only choice they had left was to sell off everything to pay for the treatment.

Yet it was to no avail, and in the end, her father still wasn’t saved. The only thing that remained was their debt.

Her mother also fell ill, possibly because of fatigue due to nursing her husband, and it didn’t take long for her to also join him.

Elisyne’s mansion, the only thing she had left, was also mortgaged a long time ago. Day after day, loan collectors kept on haunting her. “Sell your body!”, they said.

Finally, she ran away from home. It’s the third day since she’s been living on the streets.

While she was just wandering around aimlessly with no way to sate her empty stomach, she passed in front of that shoemaker, and a pair of red shoes caught her eyes.

Once upon a time, she used to pester her father to buy that pair for her, so that she could wear them to her debut in high society. It was a promise between the two of them…

When she unconsciously stopped and stared at the pair of shoes, that Elrond mistakenly thought her to be a thief and turned to violence. That was what happened.

*sniff* *sniff*…

“Wha… Miss owner! Why are you crying?!”

“I mean… *sniff*… who wouldn’t… after hearing that story… *FFFFHHRRRRPPP!*

Because of that tearful story, a lot of different fluids came out. I used a handkerchief made from Arachne silk to wipe my face.

Sorry about that. Probably because I’m mentally a Japanese person, I’m weak to emotional dramas.

“Hehe… Miss shopkeeper, you’re weird.”

*sniffs*… By the way, what about that social salon where you planned on making your debut?”

“Ah, that occasion is for introducing the margrave’s grandchild to the world… It’ll be in 5 days. I’m still allowed to attend, even if my seat is the least prestigious at the table, but…”

No chance for that now, she mutters in sadness.

And that was when my desire to poke my nose in other people’s business flares up.

“No, don’t give up! It must have been some sort of fate for us to be acquainted with each other… You will have your debut in high society!”

“Eeeh?! No, impossible impossible! I-I don’t have any clothes or even shoes! I don’t even have the money to get a carriage!”

“No problem! Just leave everything to your big sister here!”

“B-Big sister…? But miss shopkeeper is younger than me, right…?”

“Don’t sweat the small stuff!”

“I’m telling you, I don’t have the money to pay even if you prepare the clothes for me!”

“It’s a rental, a rental! It’s enough if you just buy something from me once you’ve got the money!”

“B-But…”

“Yeeeees, miss customer, the measurement room is thiiiiis way!”

I toss Elisyne into the room used for taking measurements.

Hahahah, time to unleash my full power!

I shall use everything I’ve got to make you the best outfit ever!

“First off, selecting only the best Arachne silk! I’ll make everything with that!”

“Everything?! Everything made with Arachne silk?!”

“Everything! And for the occasion, let’s go for hardened Arachne silk for the shoes, too!”

“Aaaaahh…”

“And use red as the theme for both the shoes and dress… Let’s use crushed Crimson Dragon scales as the dye.”

“C-Crimson Dragon… That’s an S-rank magical beast…”

“I went and fought some the other day, so I’m not lacking in scales. No problem.”

“You bought some… You fought some?!”

“Next, we’ll make use of Aqua Roses taken from the Crystal Valley for the brooch. And use some Holy Emeralds all around the dress and on the shoe clasps.”

“W-Wait… Waaaaaaaiiiiit!!!”

“And it’s gotta be the God Bird Lemire’s feathers for the hair ornament! Next, carve some dragon pearls from a True Dragon to make a necklace…”

Around the time when I begin to enter my serious, no-nonsense mode, Elisyne’s consciousness left home without leaving even a note.

…Eh, whatever. I’m done with her measurements anyway.

5 days later.

After using all my skills to deck her out, Elisyne became so beautiful she’s almost shining.

Her skin has also regained its luster ever since I began to feed her plenty of food.

And it seems like Elisyne has finally gotten used to the situation. She doesn’t faint whenever she wears the dress anymore.

Phew, good work, me…

“Next is the carriage, is it… Yeah, this is out of my area of expertise, even for me, so we’ll have to manage with a rental carriage…”

“Sorry, miss shopkeeper, for having you do everything for me…”

“Ah, but don’t worry! Instead of the horse, I’ll ask my friend to pull the carriage for you!”

“F-Friend…?”

I ignore Elisyne’s question and take out a summoning stone from my pocket.

“Come, Unico!”

*Puff!* Smoke rises from the stone, and a silhouette appears inside…

“U-Unicorn… The holy beast Unicorn?!”

A shining, platinum-white horse. One single horn shaped in a spiral.

The legendary ‘Guardian of Virgins’, the Unicorn.

Legend has it that this gentleman with a hardcore bestiality + loli fetish only allows unsullied maidens to ride on his back.

After meeting him in the Forest of Spirits while I was gathering materials, he decided to serve me as a summoned beast.

According to him, “A beautiful young girl of a different species, that’s super-duper hot! Shit, man, ain’t nothin’ better than becoming a slave to a little girl!”

Add ‘masochist’ to that list of fetishes. Damn it.

“Cooooorrect! He’s a Unicorn, his name is Unico! If you sit on the carriage with him pulling, it’s pretty much the same as having a Certificate of Pure Maidenhood! For when you go marriage huntingto the salon, there’s no wingman more reliable than him.”

“T-The holy beast himself… I’m not worthyyyyy…”

No, I’m telling you, he’s just a perverted gentleman. He likes being whipped by cute young girls and slaving for them.

“Ah, perhaps you already have some experience? No problem! As long as you don’t sit on him directly, it’s all OK!”

“N-No! Nothing like that!!”

Elisyne’s cheeks go bright red. Fufufuu, she’s so cute.

“Well, with how you are right now, all the noble youngsters are totally going to trip over themselves to propose to you! Go grab the best one, girl!”

“T-That wasn’t… my intention… but well, you did all this for me, so I might as well go and… have some fun.”

“Yes, yes, take care! Bye!”

I send Elisyne off as she gently waves her hand from the carriage window, and smile from the satisfaction of a job well done.

To be honest, as she is right now, Elisyne should be able to get any partner she wants.

And if you ask why, it’s because the Crimson Dragon’s scales that I used in her dress and shoes has the enchantment effect of [Charm].

Of course, I understand that the effect only helps to grant her an opportunity.

But no matter what sort of opportunity it is, once the two of them get to know each other, her partner will surely discover the hidden Elisyne that is far more charming than her outward beauty, so I don’t think there will be a problem.

And then… Around three months later.

The news that this country’s crown prince went head over heels for a low-rank noble girl, and that they went for a lightning fast wedding, also reached my ears.

And another year after that.

She, together with the prince, brought along their newborn baby and visited my store.

As promised, they came to purchase baby clothes.

Of course, just like last time, I released all my limiters and made them the most protective baby clothes ever.


Author’s note:

First the demon king, next the hero, and now even the unicorn…

Next up are the details on Elisyne’s final equipment:

__________________________

Crimson Flame Dress

Defense +60

Magic Defense +99

Fire Resistance +90%

Basic Stat Charm +3

When worn, the wearer will grow heatless flame wings as a visual effect.

Crimson Spider Shoes

Defense +15

Magic Defense +30

Fainting, Paralyze, Bind Resistance +90%

Basic Stat SPD +1, Charm +2

When worn, the wearer will be granted a large bonus to the success rate of dancing.

Aqua Rose Brooch

Water Resistance +50%

Basic Stat MID +2

Constant detoxification effect

Can create a relaxing aroma affecting everyone in a 3 meter radius.

God Bird Tiara

Defense +25

Magic Defense +30

Complete immunity to all mental status effects.

When worn, will automatically revives the wearer once. (Require 10 days to recharge after each use)

Dragon Choker

Basic Stat VIT +2, STR +2

Complete immunity to critical hits and one-hit kills.

Dragon Breath Resistance +30%

…Yeah, you can use this set of equipment to go fight the Demon King, no problem…


Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Arachne – 3

Extra: Hero


—–At first, I only planned on teasing her a bit.

My name is Hero Loto.

I am the hero chosen by the legendary Judgement Sword… at least, that’s how it should be.

After mother revealed to me the secret of my birth, I accepted the king’s command, and in order to follow my father’s footsteps to defeat the demon king, I left my home country and went on a journey.

And during the journey, I came to know my current comrades:

Swordsman, Arkham Sword

Sorcerer, Rune Ark Mage

Senior Priest, Cure Acolyte

They had been with me through thick and thin as we went to every single corner of this continent.

After the numerous fierce battles that happened during our long journey, our party gained enough strength and experience to be called true veterans.

Anyway, the hero, which is me, is at level 112.

All of my comrades have also passed level 100.

With that level of strength, we probably can’t be considered humans anymore.

However, we still don’t know if we can win against the demon king, even if the four of us all attack him together. That’s just how outrageous the demon king is.

We will need to prepare ourselves as best we can, and furthermore, we must have the resolve to challenge the demon king with our lives on the line.

With that in mind, we’ve decided to first prepare our equipment before storming the demon king’s castle. Thus, we came to the town of Rihak.

This town is famous for producing magical equipment, since the numerous magical beasts that make their lairs nearby is the best source of magical ingredients.

Full recovery potionsElixirs, high-rank mana potions, consumable spell scrolls, etcetera etcetera…

After replenishing our stock of consumables, we went on to search for equipment for all of us.

Since each of us have our own favorite shop, we visited stores all over the town and ordered custom-made equipment… and during our shopping trip, a store caught my eyes.

‘Arachne Tailor’

…When someone mentions an Arachne, what comes to mind is a type of high-rank magical beast. Their upper body is an extraordinary beauty, and their lower body is a huge spider.

And if the store is called that… Aah, I see, they might be using arachne silk as their main material. So that’s the reason for the name.

My curiosity pulled my legs toward the shop. Arachne silk is quite the rare material for cloth-type armor, so this shop might be an unexpected discovery.

When I pushed open the door, the refreshing sound of a bell rung inside the shop.

The sound seemed to have alerted the clerk to our arrival, and she came to greet us.

“Welcome to Arachne Tailor!”

My brain stalled.

Shoulder-length hair, so silvery it almost looks like it’s shining.

The contour from her cheeks to her jaw looks as if it were drawn by a master artist.

Mystical, scarlet red eyes, like a pair of glowing rubies.

Her dainty body, wrapped in a long white dress.

The young girl standing there must have received the blessing of the god of beauty.

Rune and Cure in my party are also quite the beautiful lady and cute girl, but this girl belongs to an entirely different level.

I can declare this with all honesty, that if she was 2-3 years older, I would have proposed to her right on the spot.

Even now, I already don’t dare to look at her directly. That’s because I’m fully aware that my cheeks are heating up without my consent.

“Hero, it is an honor to receive you in my store. I am the owner, Shiori Arachne. What might you be looking for?”

What in the… This young girl is the owner?

It doesn’t look like there’s any other employees… Did this girl make all of this shop’s items by herself?

…Unbelievable. See, doesn’t this shop even have items made from True Dragon and God Bird materials?

And not only that, their quality is high… For example, this True Dragon armor has slightly lower defense, but better fire resistance than the Shining Armor I’m wearing right now.

And furthermore, its price is only nearly ⅔ of my Shining Armor.

For some reason, I feel frustrated.

Then what about me, wearing the Shining Armor? Won’t I look like someone who can’t tell the difference between good and bad equipment?

“…As I thought, you can’t get anything good from shop equipment. Probably just going to have to hunt for equipment drops if I want anything better… Wearing this stuff to fight the demon king would be tough going.”

…Which was why I accidentally let slip those words, filled with my frustration, in front of Shiori.

Aaaahh, I’m really immature.

However, Shiori’s reply far surpassed my expectations.

“Hero, if I can have your guarantee that you’ll buy my goods, then I can acquire what you need in a month.”

She said that.

The town of Rihak, famous for being the town of magical arms and armor.

Even after walking around the whole town, I still couldn’t find anything better than my Shining Armor. Yet this little maestro is telling me that she can prepare it in a month?

Normally, anyone would think her words to be a simple joke. But I believed her.

“…Really?! Alright, I’ll make that promise. I’ll be expecting your new equipment.”

I believed her, because I saw the passionate flame of a craftsman’s soul burning behind the little shop-owner.

One month later.

We simply kept on killing magical beasts.

All for the purpose of gathering enough money for miss Shiori’s declared price.

Apparently, what I’ll be getting is a unique set of armor that makes use of super rare materials. The money we have right now isn’t enough to pay for it.

However, as a hero party, even that price isn’t completely out of our reach.

After the promised month has passed, we managed to get enough money and headed once more for Shiori’s shop – the Arachne Tailor.

“I have kept you waiting, Hero. This is the set of armor I promised you.”

Aaaahhh… Shiori, your cuteness is eternal… Leaving my comrades at the inn and coming here alone was the right decision.

I did that because it wouldn’t reflect well on a hero to be seen love-stricken with such a young girl.

Aaaahhh… My lovely angel Shiori… Even while you’re carefully lining up those pitch-black clothes or pitch-black boots or pitch-black cloak with those slender arms, your every movement is beauty itself.

….Wait, pitch-black? Clothes? Cloak?

Just what is this set of armor made from? It’s not actually armor, but clothes… and th-they’re leaking out some sort of black evil-looking aura?!

“Let’s see… From the left, they are… ‘Demon King Cloak (Enhanced)’, ‘Demon King Boots (Enhanced)’, ‘Demon King Clothes (Enhanced)’, and ‘Demon King Pants (Enhanced)’. A 4-piece set of super-armor! ♪”

“D-Demon King Clothes?!”

“Yes, Demon King Clothes… Despite the name, there’s no curse on it, so you don’t need to worry.”

“J-Just what are these made from…”

“Secret ♪ Please guess from the name… Ah, please check the details of their effects with [Identify].”

“A-Alright… [Identify]”

___________________________________

Demon King Clothes (Enhanced)

Defense +60

Magic Defense +70

Darkness Resistance +50%

All Basic Stats +1

When worn, the wearer will emit a dark aura.

Demon King Boots (Enhanced)

Defense +25

Magic Defense +15

Complete Immunity to Paralysis and Bind status

Basic Stat SPD +1

Movement Speed +10%

Demon King Pants (Enhanced)

Defense +40

Magic Defense +40

Darkness Resistance +30%

Basic Stat VIT +1

Physical Dodge Rate +20%

Demon King Cloak (Enhanced)

Defense +20

Magic Defense +20

All Elements Resistance +20%

Subspace Storage Enchantment (99 slots, 99 units each slot)

_________________________________

…What’s with these absurd equipment effects?

The whole set gives me 100% darkness resistance. What the hell.

I would be pretty much immune to the demons’ main attacks. What the hell.

Also, I ain’t heard of no equipment that gives you +1 to all stats.

The cloak’s subspace storage effect is even a few times better than a [Vacuum Storage Bag]. Just this cloak alone is enough for me to build a castle.

Wait. This set can’t seriously be making use of the actual Demon King’s clothes as materials, right?!

There’s no other possible explanation for that outrageous darkness resistance…

…So does it mean I’m now out of a job?

…Nonono, waitaminutewaitaminute!

In the first place, the Demon King is there to be defeated by the Hero, right?

H-He’s still happily staying inside the Demon King Castle. He must be.

I-I must embark on this journey to bring peace to the world… Yes.

I mechanically paid for the set of armor and returned to the inn where my comrades are.

One week after that.

Our party is advancing in the Demon King castle without any problems.

No, you can say that we’re advancing too smoothly.

For some reason, all the traps on our way were already demolished, the castle is suspiciously lacking in monsters, and most of the officer-rank enemies that I’ve heard should be here, aren’t.

…Might it be? Might it actually be?

“Hero! Stop standing there like an idiot! We’ve got our first big catch in forever!”

Rune’s shout brought me back to the present.

The archduke demon, Wolfgang, appeared, his body seemingly pouring out from the darkness.

That’s right. Just a little bit further to the demon king.

This is no place to be standing stock still.

Wolfgang is practically the demon king’s right hand man. He is absolutely not an opponent we can afford to be careless when fighting. However…

[Grrr, damn humans. To attack us at this time, how underhanded of you!]

Huh? Isn’t he strangely weak? There are wounds all over his body, and his magical power is even weaker than the last time we clashed, somehow.

“Hero!! I don’t really understand why, but this is our chance! Leave him to us and go defeat the Demon King!”

“Yes, this is our fight! We shall deal with him promptly and catch up with you!”

“We’ve decided, so go, hero chosen by the holy Judgement Sword!”

“Ggh… Understood! Don’t die here, my comrades!”

That’s right, that’s right. A hero shall have his victory, supported by friendship!

With their strength right now, the three of them should be able to beat a weakened Wolfgang.

Then there’s no need to think about anything else. I should save my strength and magic, and go defeat the Demon King!

While Wolfgang has his hands full with Arkham, Rune, and Cure, I go past him and keep on running forward.

At that moment, I heard Wolfgang grumble, teeth gnashing, [If only that damn spider girl didn’t come…]

…What’s that about?

……No, leave the thinking for later.

The only thing I need to do right now is to get to the Demon King’s throne!

………………I see it!

A gargantuan double door, chiselled with symbols of a wicked god.

This is the Demon King’s hall… The throne must be here…?

Hmm?

Doesn’t this door look… a bit broken?

This is the Demon King’s hall, right? The door normally shouldn’t be broken, right?

And not just that, the whole door is made from mithril, and quite thick at that, too.

Currently, that door has a big, gaping hole blown out of it, starting from the floor up to around 2 meters high.

…L-Let’s just go in first, I’ll think about this later. Yeah.

“E-Excuse me…”

Yeah, that’s not what you’re supposed to say when you’re invading the Demon King’s hall. I know that.

But for some reason, I’m having a really, really bad feeling about this.

It’s not exactly a danger to my life… This feeling is more like, my raison d’être is being threatened instead, I guess?

Silence.

Not a single noise in the Demon King’s hall.

Or rather, I don’t even feel the presence of any living beings here.

Just what happened here…?

Whoops, there’s something white at the throne.

…Yeah, this is paper… and there’s something written on it.

Let’s see…

I lost to a young girl, got stripped naked, tied up, and even my equipment was seized… After having that humiliation play done to me, I can no longer stay at this castle as a demon king. Furthermore, I think I had awakened to something new… *cough* *cough* Uh, so basically, I’m going on a journey to heal my broken heart, so please don’t search for me.

Demon King.

Young girl.

Demon King Clothes (Enhanced).

The broken traps and door.

Wolfgang full of wounds.

And this note left behind by the demon king.

…M-My lovely Shiori… the true Great Demon Queen…

I don’t know how long I’d been standing there dumbfounded, but I hear the sound of a few pair of footsteps echoing in the hall.

Aah, so my comrades already defeated Wolfgang and are running here.

“Hero! You okay?!”

“We came to help… Wait, huh?”

“Mmm, just where is the Demon King…”

Of course they’ll be confused.

After risking their lives to assault the Demon King Castle and finding that the very Demon King in question isn’t here, there’s no way they wouldn’t be confused.

“Yeah… He’s, not here anymore.”

“No more…?”

“Which means… You won! Hero!”

“Amazing, you beat the demon king even before we arrived!”

“Indeed the hero chosen by the holy sword…”

“Eh, uh, no, but I didn’t defeat him?”

“Hahah! No need to be modest! With this victory, the monsters will have to retreat far back!”

“You’re no longer a hero, you’re the savior!”

“No, I’m telling you…”

“Long live Hero Loto!!”

“WIth this triumph, you’ll finally be allowed to marry Princess Lara! Her wait back home will soon be over!”

…I can’t say it. I can’t tell them that the Demon King lost, had humiliation play done to him by a young girl, and finally ran away from the castle… For the sake of both of our honor, I can’t say it!

I’ll probably have to beg Shiori, the perpetrator of this situation, to keep quiet and go along with my story…

Then I should prostrate myself in front of her, or maybe do anything she wants… Huh? For some reason, prostrating myself in front of my lovely Shiori feels kind of like a reward instead…

…Aaah, I sort of understand the Demon King’s feelings a little bit now…

 

 

In the end, I never came back to my country.

When I shamelessly begged Shiori for that favor, she happily agreed and replied, “Actually, I want to keep my involvement a secret too, so let’s just consider this your victory over the demon king”, so I no longer have any worries for the future.

Right now, I’m busy working as the president of the Lovely Shiori Fan Club, so I don’t have any spare time to go back home.


Author’s note: Hey, hero… Remember, yes lolita, no touch.

Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Arachne – 2

Arachne (Second Part)


The brown-haired woman’s name is Aize Foren.

She’s the daughter of a wealthy merchant in the town of Rihak, located near this forest. According to her, she was on her way back from a business deal at the neighboring village when the bandits attacked.

I just randomly made up a story that goes something like ‘I was living together with my mother in the forest, but she died of sickness, so I left and tried to go to the town’, but thankfully, she believed and sympathized with me.

I also explained that my strength came from being trained by my ex-adventurer mother, and again the woman doesn’t hold even an ounce of doubt.

…So that means this world has adventurers.

…Well, I did have my suspicions from seeing mother turning the tables on all those people who often came to challenge her.

And so, when I said I want to work at the town, she said that new immigrants to the town require a guarantor, and that she can be one for me if I want.

Indeed, one shouldn’t hesitate to save people.

And then she continued to say “That’s not nearly enough to show my thanks!”… Which led to me being dragged inside the Foren house immediately after we entered the town. Right now, I’m being assaulted with food by the Foren family at the dining table.

“Miss, we simply can’t express our gratitude enough for saving Aize when she was in danger… Ah, this grilled Horned Wolf’s innards is exquisite, you know?! And how about this Lesser Dragon’s tail steak?”

“Indeed… Aize is our house’s only child… The Foren family line just barely managed to survive today. Ah, I’ve heard that this Ogre Bear paw soup has some good medicinal qualities. Please, don’t be shy.”

“Really, no matter how much I give my thanks, it won’t be enough! Ah, this hamburg steak made from wyvern and sea dragon meat is amazing too, please have some!”

Umm… How do I say this…

Everyone in the Foren family seems to have the hobby of eating some really strange food.

They spent some big money without hesitation to collect all these rare ingredients, and I’m grateful for this generous feast, but…

No, I mean, I’m still an Arachne, you know?

I don’t have any problems with eating this sort of food, even if it’s a snake or a wolf or anything.

Just that, my [Predation] skill has been reacting non-stop ever since a while ago.

So it turns out that this skill even activates with prey I don’t hunt myself…

When the dinner’s over, even though my level was just 7 (it went up from defeating the bandits), my stats went insane.

______________________________________________

HP:     126     (Max 126    (Predation Bonus +960))

MP:     78       (Max 78      (Predation Bonus +490))

Basic Stats    (Lv Bonus)   (Predation Bonus)

STR     18                   (33)               (+399)

VIT      18                  (33)               (+460)

DEX    18                   (33)               (+405)

SPD     18                  (33)                (+335)

INT     13                   (21)               (+124)

MID    13                   (21)               (+226)

Learned Skills:

Dragon Scales, Intimidate, Breathe Underwater, Super Strength, Gust, Steel Threads, Fire Breath, Water Breath, Fire Resistance, Water Resistance, Wind Resistance, Earth Resistance… etc

______________________________________________

No no, I’m not exactly aiming to be a hero, you know?!

I’m fine with being a run-of-the-mill citizen! I’m going to be a dressmaker in this town!

Yeah, so this status isn’t something I can show to people… If they see it, I’m absolutely going to get dragged into the mess that is ‘defeating monsters’ or ‘becoming an officer for the country’ or, in the worst case scenario, ‘becoming a test subject’.

I didn’t see my stats. Yup.

After the meal, while I’m still dizzy from seeing my extreme stats, Aize sidled up to me and started talking.

“…So, does Lady Shiori have any plans while living in this town? If not, then you can just stay here like this…”

…For some reason, that sent a chill running down my spine. This feeling is a lot like when my sisters were chasing after me.

Aize, why are your cheeks so red? Wait, actually, what’s your hand doing on my thigh?

“N-No, I already got the reward from defeating the bandits, so I was thinking to use the money to start up a tailor…”

“…Oh, is that so… What a pity. But if that’s your plan, then we will help with advertising!”

“Y-y-yes. Thank you very much…”

And so, I opened a tailor shop in the town of Rihak.

Three months since then. My tailor shop is doing well.

After Aize introduced to me a cheap place, I rented it and hung up a wooden sign, and I got my own store just like that. While it’s just a small store, right from the very first day I began business, a sea of adventurers poured inside and filled up every bit of standing space of the shop, thanks to Aize announcing to the whole adventurer’s guild about how my dress stopped a bandit’s blade (apparently, the escorts who got downed by the bandits were people hired from the guild). And that’s why my shop is doing so well.

Well, I said that, but the only products I can make are Arachne silk clothes, so rear-line adventurers probably make up most of my customers.

These days, the shop finally calmed down compared to its hectic first days, but I still get plenty of profits.

While it’s true that I’m the only sewer in this shop, and most of my orders are custom tailored clothes so I can’t make a lot of them, but since I get my materials practically for free, I’m raking in cash.

“Oh? So this is the clothing store I’ve been hearing about quite a lot these days, is it?”

“That’s right. Their clothes have more defense than even some lower tier hard leather armor, they go well with magic buffs, and best of all, they’re cheap! This is the best place to buy clothes for people in the mid-rear position of the party, like me!”

The people who opened the door and came inside the shop was a man and a woman, both looking like adventurers.

The woman is a customer who recently bought a tailored robe from me.

So a repeat customer, is it. I’m grateful for your patronage.

“That so… But in the end, they’re still cloth armor, right? This place doesn’t have Hydra Leather Armor or Dragon Scale Armor, right?”

“Don’t ask for the impossible. This place specializes in clothes and cloth armor, you know?”

“Tch, I knew it, gotta hunt for them myself… Useless store.”

…Ah, he just ticked me off.

That was a challenge, right? A challenge, right?!

I smiled at the adventurer – most likely a warrior – bearing the face of a man who just barely stepped into adulthood, and opened my mouth.

“Customer, I sincerely apologize for our lacking store… If you can wait for a while, around a month, we’ll have some new items in stock, and I hope you’ll visit us again then.”

“Uh… What?! You’re… the owner?”

“Yes, I am Shiori Arachne, owner of this Arachne Tailor. Pleased to make your acquaintance.”

The adventurer’s face turned red like a tomato, his eyes kept staring at my face dumbfounded… Is he a lolicon?

Well, I’m someone with the appearance of a 13 year old, real age of 4 months counting from my birth, and mental age of a 24 year old. That’s the sort of messed-up existence I am, so I’ll forgive his rudeness.

“Aaargh! Geez! Just ignore what this oaf says, Shiori! You’re cute like always!”

The female adventurer, who’s probably a magician, hugged me from behind and rubbed her cheeks against mine.

In these sorts of situations, the fact that she’s of the same sex as me, and thus doesn’t hold back at all, only makes it more difficult to tactfully deal with her…

“Mish… Miss cuffomer… Pwease calm down…” *Pomf*

As I’m getting knocked down and petted by the woman, I make a promise to myself to expand the shop and hire more employees as soon as possible…

To the east of the town of Rihak is the sprawling Forest of Magical Beasts.

I had been diving into this place since three days ago.

I came here because I heard that this is where I can find not only Lesser Dragons and Hydras, but also Adamantite Turtles, Silver Fang Wolves, etc… These monsters are the source of super-first-rate armor materials, and this forest is their home.

While my level is just 7, my stats are practically equal to S-rank adventurers’ thanks to [Predation]. Which means, if I return to my real form – my Arachne form – and if I only stay in the shallow parts of this forest, nothing can hurt me.

Furthermore, the meat of the prey I hunted can’t be used as materials, so they went on an express train to my stomach.

In the end, I grew even more powerful thanks to [Predation].

I’m already more powerful than mother now… probably.

The basis for my guess came from the fact that the forest where I was born doesn’t have many strong monsters, so after my sisters ate each other, their growth rate would slow down quite a lot.

“Hmmm, as I thought, there’s only Silver Fang Wolves and Fire Foxes in the forest’s outer areas… Maybe it’s time to dive deeper. My level went up enough, anyway.”

I activate Tactile ThreadSensor Web and check my status.

______________________________________________

Name: Shiori Arachne. Age: 24  Female

Total level: 38

Race: Arachne

Class: Dressmaker

HP:        684    (Max 684    (Predation Bonus +1130))

MP:        254    (Max 254    (Predation Bonus +595))

Basic Stats     (Level Bonus)  (Predation Bonus)

STR     25                   (118)                 (+440)

VIT     25                    (118)                 (+510)

DEX    18                    (85)                   (+640)

SPD    18                    (85)                   (+490)

INT     13                    (61)                  (+320)

MID    13                    (61)                  (+390)

______________________________________________

As my level rose, I also gained the skills [Will-o’-the-wisp] and [Bite].

Thankfully, it seems like I can still use these two skills when in human form.

…Yeah, this is probably enough to hunt a standalone Lesser Dragon or Hydra in the deeper areas.

I’ll hunt for around two days more and then return to the shop to start production.

Hahahah, just you wait!

When I’m done with this, not only can my shop provide for support-type adventurers, but I can also attract adventurers who fight on the front line.

Let’s aim to become the number one tailor in town!

…I have a feeling my shop is slowly becoming an armor shop instead of a tailor, though…

After returning from the Forest of Magical Beasts and spending another 3 weeks to make the armor, I finally somehow managed to display my new goods in the store within the one month time limit that I promised the adventurer.

And right now, in front of my eyes, among the mass of customers visiting my store is exactly that warrior, who is currently staring at a display stand in a daze.

“Hydra Leather Armor, Dragon Scale Armor… and over here is a breastplate made from Adamantite Turtle materials…? What’s more, this price… is even 30% cheaper than the market price…”

“Hohoh… Customer, did something catch your eyes?”

“Ah, yeah… Miss, can I [Identify] it?”

“Yes, the Hydra Leather Armor and the Adamantite Turtle breastplate, is it? Please feel free to examine it.”

By the way, [Identify] is a skill to examine the details of non-living objects. It can be said to be a skill that all adventurers should know.

After getting my permission, the warrior closely examines the Hydra Leather Armor and the Adamantite Turtle breastplate.

“…So this is no fake… And the durability is quite high compared to those on the market… And with this price?! How the hell?!”

Wahahah, feast your eyes on my high-quality armor and be impressed! They’re completely different from those pre-made goods on the market!

Normally, for armor that utilizes high-quality materials like these, the first thing to break isn’t the protective plate, but the leather fasteners or the thread bindings.

With that in mind, I made the fasteners and bindings from my own thread. They’re fire-proof, water-proof, and tough to boot.

The result is a maintenance-free high-quality set of armor, with not only high defense but good durability as well.

Furthermore, I get the materials by myself, so I can sell it for cheap.

“…buy…”

“…Yes?”

“I’m buying! This and this and this! I’m buying everything!!”

“Understood! Thank you for your business!!”

Hahaha, I won! I’m not going to let you go home with a single coin left in your pockets!

It won’t be long until my shop becomes the number one tailor in town!

…Even I had such naive thoughts, once.

“Hmmm… So this is the shop I’ve been hearing about recently. How disappointing.”

…Huh? Déjà vu?

“Indeed, looks like there’s some good stuff, but true first-rate armor should be made from True Dragon scales at the very least… And the best robes should be made from feathers of the God Bird Lemire… It’ll be much too risky to use this shop’s armor to go hunt Corrupted Dragons.”

Standing there is a knight who’s whispering loudly enough for me to hear him, while constantly throwing his glances my way… If I remember correctly, he’s the leader of the knight squadron of this town.

Grr… Argghh… That’s it. You’ve done it!

I don’t care about this town anymore, my shop is going to be the best one in this whole country!

“Customer, I deeply apologize for my lacking store… If you can wait for a while… about one month, I shall have new items in stock, so please come back at that time.”

“Oh? I’ve heard that True Dragons and Lemire birds only live on Dragonfang Mountain in the Greenroad region. It seems you have a way to acquire the materials… If possible, can you make enough for everyone in my squadron?”

“Yes, I will certainly fulfill your demands.”

“…I see. Then I shall be expecting your delivery.”

I actually haven’t thought about how to get those materials at all! I was just retaliating to your provocations!

So, that so-called Dragonfang Mountain, and 1 month… Counting the time needed to make the items, then it’ll be around 3 weeks… I wonder if I can do this.

One month later.

I somehow managed to reopen my shop after dragging a body full of wounds back home.

I barely managed to defeat a True Dragon and the Lemire bird and take their materials after losing a spider leg.

Well, I only lost a leg. After a while it’ll grow back, so I don’t really mind.

Furthermore, I grew to level 58 after this journey, plus I ate True Dragon and Lemire meat, so my stats rose to absurd levels.

Utilizing my high stats, I made 30 sets of armor of each type in three days.

My products should be more than enough to satisfy the knight captain’s orders.

“Hm?! This is…”

And right now, that knight captain is standing in my shop, holding a ‘God Bird Robe’ in his hand, and mumbling to himself.

“Th-this is indeed a God Bird Robe… Arachne silk is used as the base, is it? And quite high-quality silk, too. And… what’s this? No signs of any sewing. It’s as if the fabric was in the shape of a robe from the beginning…”

Exactly.

I weaved the cloth into the shape of a robe from the start, which made the robe even tougher and improved the texture.

I’m the only one who can make these sort of clothes, thanks to my ability to control the threads to a certain degree at the moment they’re created.

“And the True Dragon armor, too… Arachne silk was used for the lining… True, this means there’s no worries the armor will slip out of place, so that’s good. No need to wear additional cloth armor, which means better maneuverability.”

Indeed, three whole sleepless nights was really quite tough on me, but it was worth it. The knight captain also seems very much satisfied.

“Wonderful… I’m also surprised at how you managed to acquire True Dragon and Lemire materials over such a short time period, but more than that is how you even use such high-quality arachne silk, not as the main materials, but as the lining… and furthermore, so effectively! I must apologize, miss, I only looked at your appearance and made a poor judgement. You are indeed a master of your craft, and no one in this country can be your equal! Please allow our squad to purchase these! Of course, at whatever price you wish!”

After he apologized for his rudeness a month ago, he purchased 20 sets of True Dragon Armor and 12 God Bird Robes without a word of haggling.

And the rest were sold out completely within 3 days of sitting in the shop’s inventory. The shop’s capital is quite abundant now.

I should probably move over to a bigger place and hire more employees soon.

Then hire maybe a designer specialist, and focus more on the designing phase when making armor…

—And right when I was daydreaming about my future plans, they appeared.

*Creaks*. The shop door opens, and the hero party I’ve been hearing about these days entered the shop.

And after having one look around the shop, the oh-so-great hero granted me his opinion in a whisper.

“…As I thought, you can’t get anything good from shop equipment. Probably just going to have to hunt for drops if I want anything better… Wearing this stuff to fight the demon king would be tough going.”

Ha.

Hahaha.

MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Fine!

I just need to supply you your equipment, right!

Equipment good enough to beat the demon king!!

“Hero, if I can have your guarantee that you’ll buy my goods, then I can acquire what you need in a month.”

“…Really?! Alright, I’ll make that promise. I’ll be expecting your new equipment.”

And then, one month later.

I sold the hero a four-piece set of super armor at a reasonable price. The set includes a Demon King Cloak (Enhanced), Demon King Boots (Enhanced), Demon King Clothes (Enhanced), Demon King Pants (Enhanced).

Well, just look at the names of the items and you can guess what they were made from.

In a daze, the hero takes the set of armor that has already lost its raison d’être in his hands…


Shiori’s stats at the end of this chapter:

Name: Shiori Arachne. Age: 24  Female

Total level: 69

Race: Arachne

Class: Dressmaker

HP:         1725     (Max 1725 (Predation Bonus +3230)) in Arachne Form

HP:         1242    (Max 1242 (Predation Bonus +3230)) in Human Form

MP:         449      (Max 449 (Predation Bonus +1308))

Basic Stats   (Level Bonus)   (Predation Bonus)

STR     25                 (195)                   (+999)

STR     18                 (140)                   (+999) *Human Form

VIT     25                  (195)                   (+999)

VIT     18                  (140)                  (+999) *Human Form

DEX     18                (140)                   (+999)

SPD     18                 (140)                   (+690)

INT     13                 (101)                    (+605)

MID     13                (101)                    (+710)

Title:

Weaver Princess, A Ruler Who Does Not Rule, Artisan Master

Personal Skills:

Charm, Thread, Soft Threads, Steel Threads, Sewing (Ex), Weaving (Ex)

Armor Creation (Advanced), Evasion Rate Up (Large), Escape Rate Up (Large)

Tactile ThreadSensor Web, Web Shield, Predation

Human Transformation, Detect Presence (Unavailable in Human Form), Regeneration, 4 Strike Combo (Unavailable in Human Form)

Dragon Scales, Intimidate, Breathe Underwater, Super Strength, Gust

Fire Breath, Water Breath, Shining Breath

Will-o’-the-wisp, Bite, Flight Magic, Spirit Absorption, Spirit Enchantment

Demonic Light, Release Miasma, Command Magical Beasts

Fire Resistance, Water Resistance, Wind Resistance, Earth Resistance, Darkness Resistance

Equipment:

Arachne Silk Dress (Enhanced)

Arachne Silk Pack (Enhanced)

______________________________________________________________

By the way, the demon king is level 150-200.

The hero is level 100-120.

The arachne mother is level 30-40.

The only reason Shiori won was because of her predation bonuses.


Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Arachne – 1

Arachne (First Part)

TL note: This series is set in the same world as Pseudo-Kunoichi.


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When I reincarnated, I became a half-human half-spider Arachne monster girl!

Yeah, you probably don’t understand what I’m saying!

Even I don’t (cries).

I’m Arakura Shiori (24). I should have been working at a florist in the city, but…

The last thing I remember is a truck recklessly plowing into the shop.

……

………So basically.

It’s that thing called the “truck reincarnation”!

Because of my hobby of playing RPG games and reading internet novels, I took a few steps into the otaku realm (it’s only a few steps! Probably…) Not long after I woke up, I understood my situation.

I see, I died.

I mean, I can’t not understand my situation.

My mother and sisters’ upper bodies are all silver-haired world-class beautiful ladies/girls. But their lower bodies are huge spiders.

Taking my RPG knowledge as reference, they look exactly like the half-human half-spider monsters called ‘Arachne’.

There’s no way this is Earth, right…

And so, since I didn’t have much attachments to my past life, I quickly accepted this situation, but…

The problem is that my sisters are drooling and attacking me.

No, it’s not yuri or anything sexual.

It seems that in the Arachne race, there will be nearly a hundred babies born at the same time. These sisters will have to eat each other, and only the few strong survivors will live on and become the next generation of Arachnes!

In fact, the sisters who survived this struggle for existencecannibalism grew even bigger and stronger, as if they absorbed the power of the defeated.

However, as someone with the consciousness of a Japanese person, I can’t do something like killing my sisters and eating them… I simply ran and ran.

And, well, speaking of food, I somehow survived by catching caterpillars or rabbits or pheasants.

……Even if I became a monster, I’d rather eat caterpillars than eat my sisters. Also, they’re surprisingly tasty.

However, obviously, my food will affect my development.

One month after I regain my previous life’s consciousness, only a few of my sisters remain. These beautifully bewitching ladies all look exactly like mother, but my childish body still hasn’t grown… For comparison, I look like a 12-13 year old human girl.

I’ve heard that the nutrition taken during childhood can cause serious problems to a baby’s growth later on, but if it’s true, then I’ll probably have to spend my life as a loli Arachne.

My sisters are all over level 20 too (this world has levels and stats, like in RPG games!), while I’m the only one to still be at level 5…

However, probably because I had always been running for my life from my sisters, only my skills in running and escaping reached a higher level than any of them, I think.

Well, I managed to survive until now thanks to that.

But if things continue like this, the level difference will only grow… I can already see myself becoming a crunchy, tasty morsel for my sisters.

Which is why I’ve decided to run away from the Arachne lair in the forest, in which I had lived in for a month… to run away from my mother and sisters…

“If I’m running away, heading to a human town still seems to be the best choice, I guess…”

I kept on churning out threads from my butt, then wound them horizontally between my legs – to be precise, my front spider legs.

Once I have a wide enough sheet, I weave the thread vertically through the gaps between the current horizontal threads.

The arachne thread flowing out of my butt moves according to my thoughts to a certain degree, so I can weave a piece of fabric perfectly even without a weaving machine.

…Entering a human town butt-naked doesn’t seem to be a good idea, and so I decided to make clothes.

My train of thought went from “Well, silk came from silkworms…” to “Then maybe I can make clothes from spider threads too…” And when I tried to do it, I was surprised at how easy it was.

Not only that, I can even adjust how sticky my threads are. They’re even stronger than some metal wires, and at the same time smoother than silk, so it’s actually the perfect material for street clothes.

While I busied myself with such thoughts, the sheet of cloth is done.

It’s about 1 meter long and 0.6 meter wide.

“And this makes, umm… the 4th sheet? That’s probably enough.”

I take the sheets I made previously in my hands and use one of my knife-like claws to cut them into the correct size, then use some quick-drying sticky threads as an adhesive to glue the sheets together… and with that, an uncolored dress is finished.

Obviously, I don’t have any way to dye it, but that’s asking for too much in my current situation.

“Yeah, good work, if I do say so myself…”

It’s loose from the waist down, like a maternity dress. I made it this way so that I can wear it in both spider form and human form without tearing it apart.

Still, there’s a lot of fabric left over, so maybe I’ll make a bag.

Maybe a travel backpack… tough, somewhat big, and wearable.

Next are rations. I can’t hunt for food after I leave the forest, so I catch three rabbits, bleed them, then wrap them in cocoons made from my threads and bring them along.

Arachne threads can also preserve food. Super convenient.

……It’s similar to how other arachnes, like my mother, preserve the adventurers who comes to defeat them for later consumption.

Mmm, that’s probably enough preparations…

Well then, my mother of this life, thank you for giving birth to me.

My sisters… I’m sorry that I couldn’t let you eat me.

I’m going to survive in this world as best I can, even if I have to leave everyone…

After bowing at the direction of my mother and sisters’ nest, I put my rations and clothes into my handmade backpack and began to head out of the forest…

Back in the nest, four shadowsArachnes watch Shiori with their superhuman eyesight.

“My daughters… has Shiori left?”

“Yes, mother… it seems she’s finally gone.”

*sobs* My little cute Shiori… Shiori…”

“Don’t cry, big sister… If she stays here… She’ll be in danger.”

“Yes, I also don’t think I can resist my instinct… Both to eat her and to ‘eat’ her.”

“That soft baby skin! Those twinkling eyes! Lips like a pudding! She’s just like an unripe fruit! Even though we’re the same age… Aaaah, I really should have tried to have a taste of her!! Mainly sexually!”

As the Arachne race doesn’t give birth to males, when they need to reproduce, they capture human males to squeeze out their seed.

Naturally, when arachnes need to deal with their libidos in other occasions, the only choices left are ones of their own race and gender.

Basically, the whole Arachne race is all lesbians.

Furthermore, since the babies receive pretty much 100% of their mother’s genes, everyone looks like clones of each other.

But Shiori obviously looks different from her sisters… Her cherubic young girl appearance awakened her sisters’ sleeping lolicon tendencies, and thus led to their extreme displays of love.

However, at the same time, their instinct to eat the weak still exists. If Shiori continues to stay at the nest, sooner or later, someone is going to lose control and take her life.

“If that’s the case, we’d rather let her go…” With such thoughts in their mind, the Arachne family quietly sent Shiori off.

During that time, I simply continued on my way through the forest in spider form, with nary a thought for my mother and sisters in mind.

My burly eight spider legs, its appearance in direct contrast to my delicate-looking upper body, quickly carries me through the forest while leaving deep scars in the earth.

I don’t really feel tired, plus the uncomfortable shaking doesn’t really affect my upper body much.

Indeed, if not for an arachne’s eight legs, I wouldn’t be able to move through this uneven forest so comfortably.

I’m moving my legs at a speed that is ‘somewhat fast’ according to my senses, but the scenery is passing me by quite quickly.

I’m probably going around as fast as a bicycle.

Compared to my sisters, I’m the weakest one out of everyone, yet even I can go this fast… An arachne’s physical ability is seriously amazing.

…Oh yeah, I wonder if my human form is still similarly strong.

Hmmm… Let’s check out my powers and skills.

If I’m going to live at a human town, I’ll need to precisely grasp my own strength, or else something bad’s probably going to happen.

My life as an arachne has only begun a month ago, and to be honest I’d always been running for my life from my sisters, so I didn’t have much of a chance to check out my abilities.

I put a bit of strength into my right index finger and activate [Tactile Thread]Sensor Web.

And a length of thread, so thin as to be practically invisible to the eyes, quickly grows out of my index finger. I stick the other end of the thread into my own body.

Immediately, info about myself appears in my brain, looking much like a game’s status window.

______________________________________________

Name: Shiori Arachne  Age: 24  Female

Total level: 5

Race: Arachne

Class:     Dressmaker

HP:     90     (Max 90)

MP:     65     (Max 65)

Basic Stats  (Level Bonus)   (Predation Bonus)

STR     25            (35)                      ()

VIT     25             (35)                      (+1)

DEX    18            (25)                      (+1)

SPD    18             (25)                      (+10)

INT     13             (18)                     ()

MID    13             (18)                     ()

Title:

Weaver Princess

Personal Skills:

Charm, Thread, Soft Thread, Evasion Rate Up (Large), Escape Rate Up (Large), [Tactile Thread]Sensor Web, Web Shield, Sewing, Weaving, Predation, Human Transformation, Detect Presence, Regeneration, 4 Strike Combo (Unavailable in Human Form)

Equipment:

Arachne Silk Dress

Arachne Silk Pack

______________________________________________

This is a rare skill that I can use instinctively. Of course, I can also use it on other people or on inorganic substances.

It also tells me if there’s poison or not in what I eat, so this is probably the skill that has helped me the most during my one month of wilderness survival.

Seems like the reason the information shows up like a game status window is because the skill tries to match up with my perception. According to my sisters, even when they try to use the same [Tactile Thread]Sensor Web skill, the information they get is a lot rougher and lacking in detail.

…Well, leaving that aside.

What’s this [Class: Dressmaker] thing? … Ah, was it because I made a dress?

Also, I have this [Sewing] and [Weaving]… With these skills, I can probably make my living in the town somehow.

Oh yeah, if I remember correctly, according to Earth’s mythology, Arachne took pride in being able to “weave more skillfully than the gods”, and then was turned into a half-human half-spider monster.

There’s probably a relation with my skills.

“[Evasion Rate Up (Large)] and [Escape Rate Up (Large)] were probably because I kept running away from my sisters all the time. And what’s [Predation]…?”

I don’t really understand how it works, so I tried to focus my attention on [Predation], which created a window showing more details. Ooh, convenient.

Oookay, let’s see…

[When eating creatures with magic inside their bodies, your stats will rise by a certain amount (permanent effect). Furthermore, it’s possible to learn new skills. Eating prey with stronger magic will grant a better chance of raising stats.]

Oooh… This ability totally sounds like a cheat.

So that’s the reason… This is why my sisters are so much stronger than me…

They ate ones of their own race… Cannibalized those arachnes with bodies filled to the brim with magic. Of course they’ll get strong…

Ah, but I also have a little bit of a bonus on my stats from predating.

…Which means those animals I ate weren’t just normal birds and rabbits like I thought, and they’re probably some sort of magical creatures.

Well, if I’m going to live in a human town, then I probably won’t have many chances to eat magical creatures anyway, so ignoring this is fine.

And then… [Regeneration], just as it says in the name, is an ability that heals my wounds as time passes. Looks like I can grow a new arm given enough time.

Indeed a half-spiderArachne. It’s convenient to not have to go to the doctor.

The problem is, how many of my abilities remain when I turn into human form?

“Well, trying it out would be the fastest way… Aaaand there.”

As I chant in my mind “Tuuuurn into a human, tuuuurn into a human…”, my lower body gradually shrinks and turns into a pair of smooth human legs.

Furthermore, the 6 eyes twinkling like rubies on my forehead (I’m a spider, so in total I have 8 eyes!) also sink and disappear inside my body with a *plop*.

“Whoooooaaaaaa… So narrow! Have humans always had such a narrow field of vision? And the legs… Feel kinda unstable…”

Looks like I got way too used to an Arachne’s body after that single month, more than I expected.

“So, my status. [Tactile Thread]Sensor Web… Hmm… So Detect Presence and 4 Strike Combo aren’t usable in a human body. These skills probably depend on my spider eyes and legs, so no way around it, I guess. Other than that… STR and VIT drops from 25 to 18… Wow, it goes down by quite a lot… But well, a human female would be like this, I suppose.”

I keep on mumbling to myself while checking out my status and continue walking in the forest at the same time.

From the viewpoint of a person in my past life, I’m totally a suspicious person right now.

And so, it would take another 10 minutes for me to hear that sound.

“…This is… swords clanging?”

The sound of steel striking steel rings from afar.

There’s not likely to be a blacksmith in the middle of the forest, so it must be a battle between some sort of humanoids.

“Ummm, what do I do… Maybe I should intervene?”

This form of mine doesn’t have claws or any sort of weapons, so if I’m going to intervene, the only thing I can do is to use threads to restrict and tie them up… And it’s not like I know their situation.

For now, I guess I’ll come closer and check out the situation…

“The sound was coming from this direction… Yeaah, it’s hard to walk with my human legs when I’m barefoot… I’ll need to make shoes with my threads later… Gah?!”

While I was walking with such idle thoughts in my mind, suddenly, a brawny arm reaches out from the thicket and grab my neck.

And like that, the arm’s owner pulls me close to their body.

“Boss! There’s even one hidin’ in this place!”

The man who caught me shouted and waved his hand at the direction of the road.

That’s right, a road. I don’t know since when, but I’ve come close to the road passing through the forest.

Still, these guys… Deep voices, the thick smell of meat wafting from their mouths, tattered leather armor, and the shortsword currently pointing straight at my eyes.

Got it, they’re totally some sort of bandits or kidnappers.

And if so, then this ‘Boss’ guy who this man waved at must be the bandit chief, or someone similar.

“Yeah! Good job! A bit of a brat, but guys with that sort of hobby would prolly fork over a bunch for this cutie!”

“P-Please stop! She’s innocent!”

The person who tried to cover for me was a beautiful brown-haired lady wearing some high-quality clothes. She looks to be just over twenty.

Like me, that pretty lady’s right hand is being seized by a large, stocky bandit.

A quick look tells me that… there are around 5 bandits.

Around the woman are three armed men lying on the ground. They must have been her escorts.

“Umm… So I’m just confirming the situation here. You’re some sort of bandits or kidnappers, and right now you’re in the middle of kidnapping that lady over there?”

I need to at least confirm what’s going on here. I’m not really the type to judge people just by their faces.

“Haha… Gwahahahaha! Little lass, you sure got some nerve there! Or perhaps you got too scared and went crazy in the head instead?”

“…Please answer. Am I right?”

“Heheheh… That’s right! We’re the bandit group Doye! Kids wet their pants just from hearing our names! So if you understand who we are, better give up and stay quiet. If you do, I’ll do you a favor and kindly sample you myself… Gahahahaha!”

“Tch, Narjin. Your hobby never changes.”

“Then, ‘dis bitch over here iz mine.”

Instead of the so-called ‘boss’, the guy who captured me generously spilled all the beans, so I got what I wanted to hear.

This means I can retaliate without worries, then.

And so, let’s not waste any time. I let out a string of thread from my fingertip and wrap it around the neck of the man who’s holding me.

“Ack?!”

It looks like he doesn’t understand what just happened. He chokes, his fingers scratching his throat.

In the first place, my threads are so small you can’t see them unless you really squint, but at the same time they’re even stronger than steel wires.

There’s no way you can tear them off with just your bare hands.

Well, if I really want to, I can just slice his head off… But since I don’t want this to turn into a splatter film, I made the thread softer and intentionally blunted its cutting edge.

I constrict his airway and carotid artery, and take his consciousness in one go.

“Agghh… Ugghh…”

*thud*.

I throw the man, his face blue and his mouth filled with frothing bubbles, on the ground, and move towards the remaining four bandits.

“Ah, eh? The fuck are you… Gakh?!”

“*Wheeze, wheeze*”

“I-I khan’t breasss…”

“Shit! You fucker! Eat this!”

Indeed, the boss wasn’t so dumb as to not realize that I’ve done something to take down his men. At the moment I took down the fourth one, the only remaining bandit boss immediately slashed at me from behind with his longsword.

Unsurprisingly, I flew off from the impact of the sword… But it wasn’t as painful as I’d thought.

I casually stand up and turn towards the bandit boss. His face transformed from one of a man sure of his victory into an expression of shock.

“Why…Why weren’t you hurt?! This sword can cut even iron armor!”

The bandit boss shouted in confusion.

No surprises there. In this world, Arachne are considered a rather high-rank type of monsters.

Those like my mother even retaliate against high level adventurers and turn them into food. They’re that strong.

And it looks like clothes made from arachne threads have rather high defense.

But even with that, what I’m wearing is just clothes, so they can’t absorb the force of the blow. I still feel pain to a certain extent.

And so, I decisively punish mister bandit boss by constricting his carotid artery and airway with my thread, sending him to meet his partners.

“Eugh.”

Oh, he fainted… Damn, I had wanted to torture him a bit more before letting him faint.

“Umm, excuse me… Thank you very much! Lady Magician!”

Ah, there was a woman who got kidnapped. I forgot.

“No, no, please don’t mind it.. Also, I’m not a magician, just a humble dressmaker!”

“Miss dressma…ker? Huh?”

She got confused by my introduction. Well, I guess normally, dressmakers don’t go and defeat bandits.

After those bandits, the woman was the next one in line to get dumbfounded.


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