Sunday-sama is here! You know what it means? We can sleep all day~
Chapter 32 : The Old Amber Castle
「 ーーand that’s how I ended up here」
Mallow had reached out to AiAi via the whisper function. She had just finished explaining her situation.
She was telling AiAi about how the Red Death Worm had spat her out in front of a mysterious amber castle.
She also told AiAi about the extra quest.
…When Mallow did, AiAi became very eager and saidー
「Ehh?! Really?!! Woohoo! I’d never thought you’d find something so fortunate! You’re sooo lucky!」
「Umm… I know you’re excited about this but… what’s this extra quest all about?」
「Well, when you’ve cleared a normal quest, there’s a low chance to trigger a new, hidden quest. That’s what an ‘extra quest’ is」
「A ‘low chance,’ huh?」
「But… I’m pretty sure there never was an extra quest that triggered after clearing the Red Death Worm one. Or maybe Mallow, you’re the first player who’s triggered this quest? Like, ever?!」
AiAi said that with a voice full of excitement, but Mallow was just—
「Hmm… that’s interesting…」
「…Mallow? Are you not excited about this?」
「Mmm… I just can’t be. I was curious, so I peeked inside the castle a little while ago. I saw something dangerous」
「Eh? W-what did you see?」
「I want you to see it for yourself. But you can’t come down here, right? I was dragged here by the Red Death Worm… so I’m not sure there’s another path here」
「Hmm. Mallow, do you have a “Camping Set”? It’s an item from the item mall」
「Uh-huh. I do. Why?」
「Can you use it now? If your current location is safe enough to set the camping site, you can use it」
「Let me see… Ah, I can use it here」
Mallow set up the camping site, like AiAi said.
With that done, Mallow set her respawn point there too. Whenever she died within the amber castle, she would wake up here.
When Mallow told AiAi when she was done, AiAi said,「Okay, wait a minute」,then she disabled whispers.
What the heck does AiAi want to do? Mallow wondered.
Suddenly, the camping set began to glow. Fractals of light separate from the tent.
Eventually, the shards reassembled into a human figure. In the blink of an eye, AiAi was standing there.
AiAi strikes a cute pose! Then a wink! Mallow is a bit shocked.
「Ahem! Let me explain! We can share a respawn point with people on our friends list!」
「I-I see. Wait… did you die on purpose before you got here?」
「Eheh… Those Sand Lizards are tough…」
Since AiAi is here now, she checks her surroundings.
A man-made floor with monochrome tiles all around them.
The Amber Castle lies ahead.
It’s an unusual atmosphere.
「Oh man… this looks like an ancient ruin, right? I don’t quite get why there’s a place like this underground though」
「Maybe it’s for subterraneans?」
「Hm, so the monsters that spawn here would be subterranean-like people?」
「No. I meant something else」
「…So why did you say something like ‘subterraneans’? Ah, by the way Mallow, you said you peeked inside the castle. What did you see?」
「Um. Follow me. You’ll know once you see it for yourself」
Following Mallow, AiAi opened the castle’s double-doored gate a pinch and glimpse inside.
What she saw was—
Impossibly huge ants with bodies the color of ink.
The mandibles hanging from their jaws looked like blades with expert killing power.
『This is bad!』
『So, it’s the giant insect’s stronghold eh?』
『These insects are man-sized. They look dangerous』
『It’s natural that anything that big would be dangerous』
AiAi’s viewers were suddenly making a fuss.
Fortunately, compared to the grotesque looks of the Red Death Worm, these giant ants weren’t as shocking.
「Uhh… so we have to get past them? Really?」
「There is an ‘Abandon Quest and Exit’ button though」
「Don’t you dare push that button Mallow! Let’s just do it! Go, Go, GO!」
「I knew you’d say that」
Mallow smiled bitterly.
For Mallow, those giant ants were just big monsters, so she’s not too freaked out.
If they were spiders, she would have, without a doubt, logged out immediately.
For her, the differences between arachnids (spiders) and myriapods (centipedes), compared to regular bugs like ants was a difference between heaven and earth.
「Okay. So, shall we get going Mallow? And for my ‘caretakers’ who hate bugs and don’t wanna watch: it’s okay if you wanna leave the stream」
「You’re saying that after they saw us fighting that sickening Red Death Worm? Isn’t it a bit too late?」
「…Yeah…but you didn’t have to say it」
With that settled, together, the pair place their hands on the gate and push.
Within, the inside of the castle exposed. The giant ants stared at them with an empty gaze.
「Let’s go AiAi!」
The two girls jumped into the swarm of giant ants with the swiftness of the wind.