「Decoy for the monsters…!」
What those words meant was the fact that they let the adventurers escape.
In other words, Ronaldo-san used the escaped adventurers to keep the monsters away from the labyrinth city.
That was a possibility I never imagined.
In a normal situation, I would’ve denied it without a second thought.
However, as I was astonished, I noticed,
……After the horde of monsters led by the lich, there hadn’t been any attack from the monsters toward the labyrinth city.
Narsena, who was next to me, muttered in surprise at the same time I reached that idea.
「Maybe there was a sign that the monsters were leaving the labyrinth city…」
「Ah, errr, hehehe…」
Narsena gave me a vague smile as I reacted unintentionally to her muttering.
It was an attitude that could only be seen as an attempt to evade the question.
Looking at Narsena, I remembered that she was also the first to notice the existence of the orcs when the lich brought monsters with it.
Maybe, Narsena is…
「…In other words, the adventurers were used as a decoy to delay the arrival of monsters in the labyrinth city. Is that what you mean?」
Zieg-san’s voice brought my attention back toward Ronaldo-san.
With a serious expression, he was pressing Ronaldo-san for an answer.
It was Master that answered his question, not Ronaldo-san.
「There is no other possibility, isn’t it? There is no way the adventurers can escape by deceiving this guy. It’s more convincing that he calculated all this and let the adventurers skip town.」
Before I knew it, Master, the only person who was sitting on the chair with her legs crossed, rudely point at Ronaldo-san with her foot and said so.
Ronaldo-san answered Master with a troubled look on his face from Master’s blatant showing of displeasure.
「No, this is nothing that big. This is nothing more than a desperate measure because we’re late at noticing their plan to skip town.」
「What a lie.」
「If I set it up intentionally, the number of fleeing adventurers would be only limited to around 100.」
Ronaldo-san spoke indifferently toward Master who still didn’t believe him.
However, there was a tinge of regret on his face.
「By the time I noticed that the adventurers want to skip town, 80% of their preparations had been completed.」
「You were outwitted?」
Ronaldo-san took out what looked like a piece of paper to Master, who still looked at him with suspicion.
He spread the paper on the table so we could also see it.
……Written on the spread-out piece of paper was an instigation for adventurers to skip town.
We immediately understood when we saw the paper.
This was what was used when the adventurers escaped.
「By the time I noticed, most of the adventurers had received this piece of paper. If we had taken a poor response back then, an incomparable number of adventurers would have gone.」
……We understood that the damage could’ve been worse from his words.
But there was one thing I couldn’t understand.
「How did they do this…」
Certainly, with this piece of paper, it was possible to spread the word to the adventurers about the escape plan while being relatively hidden.
Even with that in mind, it was inconceivable that those adventurers would be able to hide things from not only Ronaldo-san but also Zieg-san and the others and be able to get that many adventurers to skip town.
It was Narsena who answered my question.
「……Was it the guild staff?」
「Ahh, they must be the main culprits. They must have persuaded the adventurers to give rise to this escape plan…… It’s beyond foolish.」
In my mind, I remembered being told that the adventurers fleeing from Narsena had guild staff with them.
When I heard about it, I definitely assumed that the guild staff had been used by adventurers to escape by force.
But there was no way those guild staffs were such simple people.
It reminded me that when I was framed by War God’s Greatsword, the guild staff were also involved.
Why didn’t I notice the possibility that the guild staff were taking part in this too?
My regret aside, Ronaldo-san continued with an irritated expression that he rarely shows.
「The guild staff in the labyrinth city have a manual for when a labyrinth runaway occurs, and they are supposed to act according to that manual….. The guild staff here instead pretended to act according to the manual while spreading this piece of paper to the adventurers behind my back.」
In the event of an emergency, adventurers become feared as potential criminals.
Therefore, when the labyrinth runaway occurs, the most important thing was to control the adventurers.
In other words, the ones who had the most contact with the adventurers were the guild staff, and they probably used that to persuade them.
「Considering the execution, the guild staff must have decided to abandon the labyrinth city the moment the labyrinth runaway occurred…… This is the first time I’ve ever experienced all guild staff running away in the middle of a labyrinth runaway.」
A cold light appeared in Ronaldo-san’s eyes as he spat that out.
Seeing Ronaldo-san who rarely showed his negative emotion, Zieg-san looked shaken and Narsena, who was supposed to be next to me, before I knew it, had moved to behind me.
Maybe it’s unusual for Ronaldo-san to show this much anger to even his disciple, Zieg-san and Narsena?
……Nevertheless, the actions of the guild staff and their reactions were understandable.
In return for having great authority, the guild staff were obligated to take the initiative in an emergency.
The guild staff that ran away only indulged themselves in the privilege and ran away the moment an emergency occurred.
What I felt inside was disgust beyond anger.
Frankly, the guild staff would probably be killed by the monsters along with War God’s Greatsword and the other adventurers, but I felt nothing for them.
Master also opened her mouth with an incomparably more frustrated expression from earlier.
「I knew the guild made money by exporting the materials from the labyrinth instead of selling it locally, or that they’re colluding with certain adventurers and took the lead to oppress adventurers who lacked strength, but…」
「Apparently, they seem to be even more corrupt than what I knew.」
Ronaldo-san spat calmly, but with chilling eyes, looking in the direction where the guild staff usually were.
「Iredeemably foolish, they are…… Imagine what would have happened if it hadn’t been for those who secretly persuaded the other adventurers to not go along with the plan.」
Ronaldo-san added with a sigh.
Then, as if he just remembered something, he turned toward me.
「Come to think of it, Raust, could you give your words of appreciation to them? In the name of the world-class adventurer, Ronaldo, I will officially reward them after the labyrinth’s rampage subsides.」
「…Huh? Shouldn’t ordinary adventurers be more pleased with your word than mine, Ronaldo-san…」
I tilted my head because of Ronaldo-san’s sudden request.
The people who cooperated with Ronaldo-san must be adventurers.
Then, I don’t think the labyrinth city adventurers, who are antagonistic toward me, will be happy hearing words of appreciation from me.
Ronaldo-san continued while I was still confused.
「No, they said they owe you some kind of debt. Um, I think he’s called Marnell?」
Come to think of it, Marnell and the others are friends with the townspeople, but it wouldn’t be strange if the guild staff think of them as any other adventurers.
You can see that they are different from other adventurers when you see them training the children of the city, but the guild staff don’t know about that.
Understandably, Marnell and the others could persuade other adventurers to not run away without being suspected back.
While I was surprised at Marnell and the others’ work, Ronaldo-san continued, somewhat happily.
「If it’s for the benefit of Raust, they said before they agreed to cooperate. I didn’t think that you not only defeated a super-high difficulty monster but also gained allies.」
I couldn’t help but stare at Ronaldo-san because of his words.
That was definitely a word of encouragement for me.
「…Well, he’s my disciple.」
Following Ronaldo-san’s words, Master quietly said so while rolling her red hair with her finger.
At a first glance, it was an appropriate response, but there was no way I could miss that Master was also trying to praise me.
These were the words of two world-class adventurers, and above all, the words from the people who taught me the adventurer’s way.
This made me happier than anything else, and before I knew it, a smile crept to my mouth.
At any rate, I need to say something, I thought, as I was about to open my mouth, I noticed someone was gripping my hem tightly.
Wondering what was going on, I looked back and saw Narsena looking more pleased from Ronaldo-san’s words than I was.
Narsena let out a faint laugh, her cheek red from excitement.
She gripped the hem of my robe even more as if she couldn’t control her emotion.
And then she noticed I was looking at her.
Narsena, whose eyes met with mine, was visibly shaken, her eyes swam.
Then, she looked down at her hand that was holding my robe and let go in a panic.
Is she grabbing my robe unconsciously?
Such thought crossed my mind, but I couldn’t say anything to Narsena who was trying to gloss this over with a smile and embarrassed reddened face.
……Honestly, my heart was already filled to the brim I didn’t have any leeway to say anything to Narsena.
But I muttered a small complaint about one thing.
「…It’s fine to be more proud.」
There was no need to be embarrassed, I wanted Narsena to be more proud of me.
Not only defeating the mutated hydra, but Marnell and the others adoring me like this would be impossible without her.
The reason I didn’t feel anything toward the adventurers in the labyrinth city who had an antagonistic relationship with me was because Narsena was by my side.
That was why I didn’t mind Narsena openly being proud of me.
……But now I felt embarrassed to tell Narsena about my feelings, so I turned my face away from Narsena to hide my flushed face.
When I regained my composure, I noticed the atmosphere in the room had become lukewarm.
I asked her without thinking what was going on, but for some reason, the only response was an exasperated sigh.
Ignoring me who couldn’t hide my confusion, Master opened her mouth with a tired look.
「It’s just the usual for those two, don’t worry about it.」
「The usual, huh…」
「……Anyway, let’s get back to the topic.」
Master ignored Ronaldo-san who, for some reason, was looking at me and gave me a vague smile, and tried to return to the topic.
「……Can I say something?」
It was then Laila-san said so with a serious face.
Hearing Laila-san’s words, the atmosphere in the room, which had turned relaxed, became tenser.
「Is the neighboring town where the adventurers escaped to, alright? ——Isn’t there a possibility they get caught in the labyrinth runaway?」
Laila-san’s anxious remark drained the blood from our faces……
The tomorrow is a lie, well, I think I can finally focus on translating now, and to fix the problem with motivation, I decide to post translation progress on my discord, which mean I will be more active there as well, feel free to join if you want to know if a chapter will be released shortly or not
It’s been a while and I’ve been thinking about a couple of terms I use, escaping adventurers is now skipping town with fleeing in the other instance where it makes more sense that way, I also thought to change labyrinth runaway to labyrinth rampage, but decide otherwise, the monsters are too organized and human for the word rampage and stampede, which is the original reason I use runaway, the labyrinth fell out of control from human hands
There is a little bit of vague text in this chapter, mainly because I’m not sure the context of it, if I change anything, I will say in the latest chapter at the time, I will look for the context from the earlier chapters, I also need to do so because of something I found when I read ahead to translate a line in this chapter
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