048 Scarlets' Research 2 p.3

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With a sadistic laughter, he threw a cloth bag that could easily break open. It hit the cyclops’ face, right on target, scattering tiny grains of powder that spreaded out.

“Buaahh!? Ga, gaaa!?”

The giant writhed in agony, screaming inexplicably. What Gotsch used was not something as exaggerated as poison. It was a smokescreen containing powerful spices that, if inhaled or put into the eyes, would damage the mucous membranes. It was usually used to blind people, but unfortunately, in this case, the eyes were blinded from the start. So the purpose was its secondary effect.

“Haha, what do you think? What do you think of the spice of the West? Isn't it nice?”

After taking away its sense of sight, the next would be to take away its sense of smell. That was the goal.

Gotsch smiled gleefully at the success of his tactic. Two metres behind him, a cool air arose from the bushes.

“Fear the awe of god. Let it be a warning to the wicked. Stigmata!”

The person releasing a holy spell by chanting a scripture was Ninon, who was clad in an unusually red robe.


The evil giant squeaked in agony as the holy rays rained down on its wound.

Holy magic Stigmata has the effect of piercing the target with stakes of light and rendering the target immobile. The restraint was in the realm of the conceptual, so it was next to impossible for the giant to tear it apart with its physical might. It was a difficult technique that would normally require several priests for chanting, but she was able to do it all by herself. Even without being in a state of meditation.

Ninon continued to fold the holy seal in her hands, sweat pouring from his forehead as she shouted.

“Now! Hurry up and finish it with magic!”

Stigmata is a powerful restraining spell, but despite delivering lots of pain, it lacked the power to kill. It was difficult to kill a cyclops with it. Only extremely evil monsters and the undead might die from it.

The magic of a priest and a mage were effective on different things.

“Don’t need to tell me that! Let's go, everybody!”

“Yes, Teacher!”

In accordance with the leader's command, the Apostles of the Dawn began casting. Unlike before, they were not individually using a spell to hit the enemy. They were now coalescing their magic to form a larger spell. It was a secret technique to reach deeper into the magic than what a single person could reach alone.

And this was the technique that enabled them to be equivalent to A-rank in terms of instantaneous firepower.


It was a large spell capable only by mages in the inner of the inner circles. It was possible to cast it in a very short amount of time by having four people supply the magic and compress the chanting.

A thick and long purplish lightning spear appeared. It was as though it was the spear of a lightning god. Something that might be considered overkill no matter what monster it was.

But even then, one could never be too careful with a Rank A monster. If they wanted to bring it down in a single blow, then there was a need to go all out on its weak spot.

“In the eye!”

Cedric bellowed.

“The hammer I threw at it is stuck in the eye! Aim at it!”

It's like a lightning rod. A lightning strike would be attracted to metal at a higher point. To a certain extent, magic ignores the laws of physics, but by modifying the formula, it was possible to leave only the effects that are advantageous to the magician at will.

The Apostles of the Dawn grudgingly followed his instructions and fired the spear.


It screamed.

The lightning struck the war hammer that was buried in its eye socket, and the magical electricity flowed into it. Right behind the eye was the brain. Depending on the resistance to electricity, the flow of current would lead to an increase in heat, boiling the brain. In the end, the cyclops' entire body was burnt black, and he slowly fell on its back, spewing bubbling blood from its ears and nose like a geyser.

--Thump, thump, thump.

The Earth shook in response to the cyclops’ vibrating stomach.

A few moments later, the B-ranked adventurers slowly loosened up from their battle stance.

“Did we do it……?”

“Fuhahahaha……. This is the brilliance of the magic from the Apostles of the Dawn!”

“As expected, Teacher!”

They all shouted with explosive joy.

Gerald and the others looked at them warily.

“If you guys had used that from the very start…”

“Shh! Don't throw cold water now. This might bring the alliance together finally.”

It was Ninon who stopped Gerald from complaining.

As she said, the alliance of adventurers had been lacking in unity. The reason for the encounter with the Manticore and Cyclops in the first place was that the Four-headed Dragon tried to outsmart the rest and acted alone. That acted against them however.

That was the incohesive alliance they were in. She had been struggling to improve the alliance, but now that they have defeated a strong enemy, she was hoping that the adversity would build better relationships.

“I can't believe it. Are they really B-ranked? I mean, they've got all the fight in the world, but their attitude and behaviour is no better than a toddler’s.”

“You too, Cedric! Shh! Don't say a word!”

“By the way, where's the other party?”

It is Gotsch who realised.

They left the management of camp to the D to C ranked adventurers they hired. The only parties exploring the Trees of Darkness were the Scarlet Shield, an A rank party, as well as three B rank parties. Four-headed Dragon and Apostles of the Dawn were here, so what about the final B ranked party?

“Oh, sorry. Are we late?”

A new group joined them from the rear with a voice that lacked any sense of urgency.

The leader of the Four-headed Dragons shot an annoyed glance at him.

“Where the hell have you…… been? We've had two of our own killed in the meantime!”

They shouted at the party who came late, shifting the blame for their own mistake. But it didn’t seem to bother the other party one bit.

“Is that so? That's tough. ……But that's not the point! Look at this!”

The man who seemed to be the leader of the party held up a small glass bottle in his hand. The bottle, sealed with a cork, was filled with a clear liquid with a green moss-like substance floating in it.

“I collected this from the roots of a tree we just passed. This is a kind of magical luminous moss. As the name suggests, it’s a moss that glows in the dark with magic power. This area is full of magic power and despite it being dark here even in the daytime, this moss isn't glowing. Maybe there needs to be some other condition for it to glow. If that's the case, it could be a new species that lives only in this region! It's a great discovery!”

“Oh, oh...”

The warrior that should have been pissed off was overwhelmed by the lengthy explanation.

As though taking over for him, Gerald posed a question.

'And? You were late because you were looking into that moss? Ars Longa.”


The man smiled and replied as if he had nothing to be ashamed of.

The party he led was the B-ranked party ‘Ars Longa’. But their fighting prowess was at best a C-rank. Their true value lay not in battle, but in academic research and analysis. They have been successful in investigating the ecology of unknown and unexplored areas and in excavating relics in ancient ruins, which earned them the rank of B.

They travelled the world with a curious and inquisitive mind, bringing new discoveries of knowledge to others. They too were adventurers in some sense.

But they were in the middle of a dungeon overrun by dangerous monsters. It was unbearable to see them act like butterflies attracted to flower, just because something caught their attention.

“Well, leader! This is an interesting forest!”

“Absolutely, absolutely! I've never seen an environment where so many different kinds of monsters coexist!”

“Perhaps we might find ten or twenty new and unknown species! Hahaha!”

Unaware of the concerns by the other parties, the people of Ars Longa were having a great time.

Gerald rubbed his tense temples and then called out to them again.

“I’m not saying don’t do your research and investigation. But at least do so after informing us.”

The leader of Ars Longa blinked his eyes.

“Huh? Why?”

“Why, you ask?”

“Well, you see……, the Scarlet Shield is in charge of coordinating this alliance.”

“Oh, yes, I see. I'll bear that in mind.”

He said he would be careful, but his tone was light. It sounded like a child who had been ordered to help his parents but just kept making excuses, saying he would do it later. It was not the kind of thing you would expect to hear in a place where one mistake could mean the difference between life and death.
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