Chapter 0328 Dungeon Dive …?
Everything was proceeding smoothly.
Those words could be used to describe the beginning of the party’s exploration of the West Dungeon.
As promised the night before, in the morning, the inn had prepared all the necessary equipment for the dungeon exploration.
At an extra cost, of course, but it wasn’t much.
Compared to going around a foreign city on their own and getting all the gear they needed, it was surprisingly stress-free.
Moreover, with the party diving into the West Dungeon for the first time, they wouldn’t fully understand ‘what they needed’ in the first place.
Of course, some members of the party had been in the Rune dungeon many times, but there are infinite varieties of dungeons.
Things that are not considered important in Rune, or not necessary at all, may not be the case there.
However, an inn of this class knows more about dungeons than the average adventurer.
It is not acceptable for them to prepare inappropriate equipment for the royalty or famous adventurers who stay there, or to fail to meet their expectations when they make a request.
That is something that directly affects the reputation of the inn itself.
Hence, owning to their prestige, they must know as much about dungeons as the adventurers who actually dive into them, and in some cases even more…
That is the inn’s hospitality.
Armed with such perfect gear, the party arrived at the dungeon reception at the entrance to the dungeon.
And even there too, like clockwork, the inn had informed them that the party would be visiting the dungeon.
Their headcount and the fact that they were carrying a ‘Holy Seal’ was also mentioned.
“Here you go. Please put this around your neck. It is a transfer plate.”
Each person was given a small plate the size of a thumb.
To be worn around the neck like a necklace.
Each floor has a human-sized stone monument in front of the stairs leading down to the next floor.
The ‘stone monument’ has a record function, and once one reaches it, they are considered to have cleared that floor.
Once the floor is considered cleared, it is possible to return to the entrance via the transfer function.
Then, subsequently, one will be able to jump to the cleared floor by using the transfer function of the ‘stone monument’ at the entrance.
And one can only jump by transfer:
Only from the ‘stone monument’ at the entrance.
Only toward the ‘stone monument’ at the entrance.
For instance, someone who has cleared up to the tenth floor cannot jump… from the tenth floor to the fifth floor.
Similarly, it is not possible to jump… from the third floor to the fifth floor.
Only from the tenth floor to the entrance. From the entrance to the fifth floor.
Otherwise, one has to go down the stairs normally…
Niels answered on behalf of the others.
Beside him, Ryo was trembling with joy.
“Finally, at long last! After all those flags that were thwarted one after the other… I, too, am finally taking part in a classic development in isekai reincarnation stories! Finally, a decent dungeon exploration! How long I’ve waited for this moment… after months upon years of imagination… Fufufu… here I come…”
Ryo murmured so quietly that no one heard him clearly.
“Ryo’s expression is…”
“I guess he’s at it again, as usual…”
“He’s up to no good again…”
Amon called their attention, Etho guessed, and Niels concluded.
And so, the party finally ventured into the first floor…
“Everything was proceeding smoothly’, up to this point.
“…What’s with all this crowd.”
“There are people… everywhere.”
Etho muttered involuntarily, and Amon agreed.
The first floor was crowded.
There was not even a shadow of a monster to be seen.
However, even the overflowing crowd weren’t there for a picnic or to hang out.
Many of them had pickaxes…
“Mining for crystals… I suppose.”
“Yeah… in Rune, there are sometimes adventurers with pickaxes on the fifth floor, where the magic copper crystal is mined.”
Etho nodded, recalling the scene in Rune.
“But there weren’t this many of them. Perhaps because it’s still the first floor.”
Amon said, nodding his head.
Speaking of which, the three from ‘Room 11’ remained dumbfounded.
To begin with, this was the first time for ‘Room 11’, a party that has always operated in the royal capital, to dive into a dungeon.
Nevertheless, anyone can understand their surprise at the dissimilarity between the dungeon they had heard about and the dungeon they had just seen for the first time.
Gowan, for example, had his mouth wide open, literally…
Ryo was… on both hands and knees on the ground.
In a pose of despair.
“Another… classic… development… flag, thwarted… again…”
He muttered, but none of them could be bothered anymore.
“Let’s see, according to the ‘dungeon map’ we were given, the first floor is the floor of the Lesser Mouse…”
Of course, not a single mouse… was there…
“Let’s get on with it and go down.”
Niels said with a sigh, and Harold nodded in reply.
Ryo, who was still in a pose of despair, was pulled up from both sides by Amon and Gowan.
Ryo’s steps were naturally weak.
Tottering would be the perfect word for it…
In front of the stairs leading down to the second floor, there was a ‘stone monument’ to record their progress, which confirmed that they had completed the first floor.
There was not a trace of satisfaction on any of the faces of the party…
“…We’ve cleared the tenth floor.”
“…It’s a far cry from the dungeon in Rune.”
“The fact that we haven’t defeated a single monster, must be all in my head.”
Etho stated the facts, Niels agreed, Amon made comparisons, and Ryo tried to turn away from reality.
The three from Room 11 were silent.
Looking at the three from Room 11, Amon said:
“But our objective is to meet Merlin.”
Niels, Etho, and Ryo said in unison.
The three from Room 11 nodded.
That’s right, they had an objective going there.
To meet Merlin, the Demon Lord’s Advisor, inquire about the Demon Lord’s whereabouts, and use his blood to break Harold’s spirit curse.
That was why they were diving deep down.
“Well, for now, should we call it a day? I hear there’s a map from the tenth floor down, so let’s get it and come back tomorrow.”
Everyone nodded at Etho’s suggestion.
Venturing into a dungeon without information is but a reckless endeavor.
It’s common sense for adventurers.
The next day.
They consulted the inn again and obtained a map up to the 50th floor.
“According to the innkeeper, the hustle and bustle up to the tenth floor is a recent development.”
“The church said they would purchase a large quantity of crystals extracted from each of the floors up to the tenth.”
“Geez…what a mess!”
Amon said, Niels added, and Ryo was indignant.
It seemed that from the tenth floor down, there was no such clamor…
Finally… the curtain rose on the party’s dive into the West Dungeon.