『Alright, you ready to move on?』
Today was our fifth day in Ulmutt. We’d already finished all our business in the dungeon’s simpler subsections, and hence, we’d started digging a bit deeper.
We were currently hunting magic beasts around where the 14th floor was located. We could’ve gone a bit deeper given the fact that we had to handle Aurel’s request and all that, but we decided to take it slow in order to avoid injury.
Speaking of which, Fran was currently in the middle of slowly disarming a trap.
The 14th floor was one of the dungeon’s lower floors, and the traps had been modified to match. They were much more complex than the ones we’d encountered earlier. They were made much nastier too.
What I mean by that is that the traps themselves were full of well, traps. For example, there was a trap composed of a bunch of wires. You’d normally assume that it’d activate if you stepped on something, and that you were supposed to disarm the trap by cutting its wires. However, that one was instead made so that it’d only trigger if you tried messing with it. Another example would be a trap that fired an arrow that activated another trap.
Some traps had also started causing teleportation or instant death upon activation. We also started hitting areas that’d seal off our ability to teleport or use Presence Detection — not that it mattered to me seeing as I had the Unsealable skill.
I mean, I knew that the Guildmaster’s managed to get a few negotiations done and all, but this was still technically a dungeon. It wasn’t some sort of training ground for adventurers. It was the real deal, a place in which one wrong step could lead to death.
『Really? Lemme see.』
Yup, looks like she disarmed that one perfectly.
Many of the Magic Beasts that thrived in the dungeon’s lower levels had the Trap Detection, Trap Disarm, and Trap Creation skills. The magic beasts themselves weren’t actually all that strong, but they could make for a deadly force when when working in conjunction with the dungeon’s traps. And that, to me, honestly seemed rather logical seeing as how the dungeon itself was pretty much crammed full of traps.
Absorbing said magic beasts’ magic stones meant a fair increase in the respective skills’ levels. Trap Detection had leveled to 7, Trap Disarm to 4, and Trap Creation to 3.
The dungeon’s traps served to provide us with a bunch of practice too. The combination of the skill and practice had led Fran to become much more skillful in the art of disarming traps. The difference between her now and her when she tried disarming her first trap was as clear as the difference between night and day.
Two of the magics we’d obtained from Zerais’ golems, Ice/Snow Magic and Lava Magic, turned out to be rather useful when it came to their applications in disarming traps.
Moonlight Magic, on the other hand, had been stuck sitting on the backburner. The only two spells we had at the moment were Moonphase and Night Vision. The former would provide us buffs at night. The latter would allow us to temporarily see in the dark. Neither was all that useful; we probably wouldn’t be able to get any value out of Moonlight Magic until it leveled itself up a bit.
Ice/Snow Magic allowed us to freeze traps and hamper them from activating. In fact, a single activation of the magic would actually even flat out disarm explosion-type traps altogether.
Lava Magic was actually even more useful than Ice/Snow Magic. We could use it to weld a trap’s subsection and just flat out stop it from activating.
Both Magics had quite the potential for practical use even outside of battle-type situations.
That said though, Fran was still far from being able to disarm every single trap every single time.
Holy crap that was close. We were almost hit by a series of super high speed bullets made of water despite the fact that we’d teleported away. The area of effect was insane. We probably would’ve gotten seriously injured had we not escaped. The bullets were powerful enough to just flat out kill you should they hit your head or some other vital.
『Looks like you’re still a bit shy of being able to disarm the traps here perfectly.』
Oh well, can’t really be helped. That trap was the kind that wouldn’t let you go any further unless you did something about it.
Aurel’s request aside, we’d set out to do four other things.
The first was to level up. The second was to finish all the quests required for us to rank up. The third was to git gud and learn how to use all our current skills. The fourth and final was to get our hands on a skill that’d prevent us from being susceptible to skills that’d mess with our minds.
To be more specific, we were looking for a skill that’d prevent us from being affected by stuff like Coerced Camaraderie and Induced Thought.
Skills like those two only guided our thoughts, and didn’t provide us with any obvious indicators like status conditions, hence why they were especially troublesome to deal with.
We ultimately managed to discover that there actually was a monster with the skill we were looking for here in Ulmutt’s eastern dungeon, but it was one that only resided in the dungeon’s deepest depths.
Dias and Solas both claimed that their skills simply didn’t work on said monster.
Hence, we were currently giving ourselves a bit of practice while advancing towards our goal: the area at and beyond the dungeon’s 18th floor. Getting there would allow us to finish Aurel’s request too. It was a veritable two birds one stone type situation.
Our pace wasn’t all that bad despite us actively looking for practice. We’d managed to make our way down to the dungeon’s 14th floor after just 2 days worth of adventuring.
Dimensional Storage made it so that we didn’t really have to worry too much about meals, baths, or bedding. More importantly, both Fran and Urushi still looked fairly motivated. In fact, the stronger enemies and more difficult traps were only getting the two even more pumped up.
Several large magic beasts had been standing in the 14th floor’s first notable room.
「Master. High Ogres.」
『I guess that means this room won’t have any traps in it then.』
High Ogres, unlike the dungeon’s other monsters, lacked the ability to deal with traps. None were placed in the rooms in which they were placed in order to avoid the possibility of them killing themselves.
They compensated for that weakness through pure power. They generally considered strong enough to give a D ranked adventurers a fairly hard time.
We could just flat out take them head on though, so to us, their spawn zones were more or less safe because they lacked traps.
『Here we go!』
Our strategy was to wipe them all out in one go with a surprise attack. Fighting them for an extended amount of time was a bad idea, seeing as how other magic beasts could come back them up.
Urushi immediately leapt towards one of the high ogres and readied himself to bite it.
A barrage of arrows flew straight towards us the moment he tried to take action.
『Holy shit! Air Shield!』
I repelled the projectiles with a spell as Urushi panicked and dove straight back into the shadows.
Apparently the room actually did have traps inside of it. I looked towards the high ogres only to find that the arrows had simply bounced off their skin.
Ahhh, I see. Traps like this can work with them because they can’t damage the High Ogres at all. That said, they could prove rather lethal if they hit us.
Man, these traps just keep getting nastier.
『Alright, you know what, let’s just quickly wipe them out. Inferno Burst!』
The flame spell I used turned one of the High Ogres into a lump of coal as Urushi impaled another with a spear constructed of pure darkness.
『Well, so much for High Ogre zones being safe zones…』
「Bring it on.」
Well, I guess at least Fran’s motivated, so there’s that.
『Let’s try being extra careful just in case. It looks like the traps are going to be getting even nastier from here on out.』
『You be careful too, Urushi. We’ll need to avoid stuff like what just happened.』
We discovered a type of trap we’d never seen before shortly after concluding that we’d do best to be a bit more prudent.
「Weird thread here.」
『Good job catching that. I only barely noticed it myself.』
The thread Fran and I saw looked identical to the infrared sensors you’d normally see in movies and whatnot. The fact that it was visible meant that it was likely linked to some sort of magic, but I couldn’t tell what would come out of popping it.
「Want to try activating?」
『Sounds like a plan. It’d be a good idea for us to know what happens when you pop it. You know, just for future reference.』
We triggered the trap with one of my doppelgangers after moving a fair ways back.
I heard a bit of an odd rumbling sound the moment my doppelganger stepped into one of the infrared-like lines.
「Master. Walls moving.」
It was exactly as Fran described. The walls at the passage’s rear slid along the floor and rearranged themselves. The former straight passageway now ended in a forced right turn.
I see, I see. The trap was on a rather large scale, and honestly, I had no idea how we were supposed to go about disarming. Just looking at it didn’t really provide us many clues; we more or less had no choice but to just give it a shot.
The moment I thought that was the moment the walls started to move again.
『Don’t look at me. My Doppelganger’s already gone. Was it maybe cause of Urushi?』
Urushi frantically shook his head. I guess that means it wasn’t him either. So… who triggered it then? I mean, someone had to, the walls were moving.
My question was answered as the left wall vanished and opened up a passage that revealed a single High Ogre.
『Oh! I get it now! It was the High Ogre that popped the trap!』
It seemed that these traps were the kind that’d trigger regardless of how careful we were. That is, the High Ogres would pretty much just keep setting them off.
Huh, this looks pretty bad. You wouldn’t be able to use a map here even if you had one. The traps would move around, so you’d never really be able to know what was coming at you next.
The ogre caught sight of us as we were thinking about the dungeon’s traps.
『Alright, you know what, let’s just get rid of that first, and then think.』
Man, this dungeon sure is one hell of a pain in the ass to deal with.