I understood quite a bit about the use of Train Mode with the experiment at the prairie.
With this knowledge, I plan on testing out a new thing, but there’s the need to enter a high level area for that.
However, it would be suicidal if we were to do this without any preparations.
Train-chan and I decided to go to the town’s item shop and buy the things we need.
“Oh! This is…” (Souma)
The first thing that caught my eye was the Level Appraiser.
It is an item that can tell the level and name of the thing that it is sticking to, and it is honestly a trash item that has no use in the game, but I feel like it would be a priceless treasure in this world where the menu screen can’t be opened.
It is 1 for 10E, a really affordable price so, even though it has nothing to do with the experiment this time around, I will buy around 10.
I immediately got permission from the store clerk and tried it out on myself.
The paper pushed onto my arm immediately showed letters.
[Souma Sagara: LV13]
Looks like I am still level 13.
I should have been fighting a decent degree in the Sealed Lands, but no matter how much of a difference in level those enemies are, it seems like defeating trash mobs for 1-2 hours won’t amount to much.
Train Mode really might be the key to leveling up.
There’s even more need to put my hopes into the experiments now.
But what surprised me even more after seeing the appraisal was the name.
My name was written in kanji** writing when playing Nekomimi Neko, but it looks like this world turns it into katakana** writing, and my name comes before the family name. <Japanese styles of writing. Katakana is mostly used for foreign words>
It is not like that matters much, but it does make me feel like I have come to an isekai.
“Souma-san, the gem is over here, you know?” (Train)
Train-chan, who had come together with me, was looking at me in curiosity seeing me suddenly use the appraiser on myself.
It would be better to keep it a secret that I am still level 13.
I shove in all the appraisers in the bag and trot my way to Train-chan.
I looked around the store, and aside from the level appraisers, I also bought the magic gems and darts, as well as healing items for emergencies, and a clock and shovel.
The gems and darts are for the experiment, but the clock is for myself, and the shovel is to return to the innkeeper.
But to think that this store would have clocks and shovels.
I did think there was a lot of miscellaneous stuff in the game, but when I have a good look again, rather than an item shop, it is more like a general store.
Anyways, preparations are done.
I honestly wanted to take a peek at the accessory shop and the weapon store next to this one, but I should prioritize Train-chan right now.
I endure the desire and leave the town.
We head northeast.
Famously known as the leading ghost dungeon of Nekomimi Neko, the Cave of Trials, is the stage of the experiment this time around.
The Cave of Trials is a dungeon that has one of the highest level enemies in the vicinity of Lamurick. Enemies of over level 70.
There’s no event or treasure chests at all, and the monsters appearing there are all armored knights with nothing inside.
The armored knights are not that fast, but they are sturdy and strong, so they are really difficult to defeat.
But, in exchange, the experience they give can even be called extraordinary.
That’s why they are a big obstacle for the players and also a big chance for growth.
That’s what this place is, the Cave of Trials.
No, that’s how it should have been, but…
“Uhm, are we really going to be doing this here? This dungeon is famous for there being nothing though…” (Train)
The reality is that this Cave of Trials didn’t make players grow.
This place is in a sense called Ghost Dungeon sarcastically. Because of a mess up in the coding, no matter when you come, monsters are all already dead.
Moreover, the enemies in this dungeon have the highest respawn timer of 255 hours.
You can’t just wait for more than 10 days, so you would normally give up encountering monsters here.
However, I have Train-chan with me right now.
I chose my wording as I began to try convincing her.
“No, that’s exactly the point of this experiment. Actually, by getting the right conditions in place, monsters will quickly show up. I am trying to confirm this. I would like to do an experiment with that as the basis…” (Souma)
I feel like, if I were to tell Train-chan that she has the power to call monsters, she would end up getting dejected right away.
It is painful that I will be deceiving her here again, but I explain it to her while leaving those areas vague.
But it seems like Easy Heroine-chan didn’t show a shred of doubt towards me, her eyes burning with passion, and she was clinging onto it with an unexpected drive.
“S-So that’s why the goblins at that prairie suddenly showed up! You are amazing, Souma-san! Could it be that it is knowledge passed down to the Guardian of the Seal?!” (Train)
“…No, please forget about that name…” (Souma)
Why do you dig out the dark past of people with pinpoint accuracy?
No, I dug myself into that one though.
I held my head as I continued explaining.
“Anyways, we succeeded in the prairie the last time, so I want to test it out with the enemies here this time around.” (Souma)
“Aah, I see! This time it won’t be at the field, but at a dungeon, right?! I am getting excited!” (Train)
I calm down Train-chan who is already getting her steam burning here and explain the steps.
First, the inside of the cave should be devoid of any life, so we can progress all the way to around the middle of the dungeon.
We will wait 2 hours there and the Train Mode should activate.
“If my theory is correct, enemies should show up then. They are strong, but slow. You should be able to escape them with your speed. I would like you to hit each enemy that shows up with a dart once and go even deeper in.” (Souma)
“In other words, we will be counting the number of revived monsters by using the darts.” (Train)
Darts are an attack item.
It deals 1 point of fixed damage, so it serves as a trump card for metal type monsters, and it can also serve as a marker for when a whole lot of the same enemy shows up.
I bought 50 of those.
“No, there’s no need to force yourself to use the darts. We are going to be dealing with level 70 monsters. Prioritize running away, and only use them when you have the leeway to.” (Souma)
She responded nicely, but I am a bit uneasy about this.
The enemies are level 70, moreover, the type that has high attack power compared to ones of the same level.
I am letting her borrow my mythril armor still, but it is in the end just store armor you can find in Lamurick.
I can only say it is not enough against an enemy like an armored knight.
My uneasiness shows up in my face.
I am beginning to think we should not do this.
“Honestly speaking, this experiment is pretty dangerous. You don’t need to force yourself to cooperate in this…” (Souma)
“I…will do it. My level is far from that, but I have fought armored knights before. If it is just running away, it will be easy!” (Train)
In contrast, Train-chan was full of determination.
I still am doubtful about this and she said.
“Cause you know…this…is something necessary, right?” (Train)
Those words made my breath stop for a moment there.
“…Yeah, it is necessary.” (Souma)
I nodded as if I had given up and Train-chan smiled.
“Then, I will do my best…for the sake of Souma-san.” (Train)
I was about to correct her there, but I decided against it.
There’s no need to pour cold water on her determination.
I instead continue the explanation.
“This Cave of Trials is shaped in a circle. The deepest area and the entrance -this place- are connected. That’s why, as you go deeper…you end up there.” (Souma)
Saying this, I point at the top of the cliff in front.
Who knows how many tens of meters there are.
I can only tell faintly what part is the topmost part from here.
“And that’s where this comes into play.” (Souma)
What I brought out was the Gem that has the spell Feather Fall enchanted to it.
The Gem is a consumable, but you can activate the spell inside of it one time.
Feather Fall is a spell that decreases fall speed.
It will reduce the falling speed and the impact for 1 minute after use.
I have already given the same thing as this to Train-chan.
“If you manage to move to the cliff, you will be able to make a big shortcut on your return. Please escape from the monsters and use this to jump off from up there. And then, you will regroup with me waiting here and that’s the end of the experiment.” (Souma)
“Got it!” (Train)
As always, her response is really good, but it really is worrying.
“Are you okay? You know how to use the Gem, right? You won’t be jumping off without doing anything, right?” (Souma)
When I asked this, she answered with a laugh.
“You don’t have to worry that much. It would instead be impossible for me to jump off such a high cliff without doing anything.” (Train)
“Yeah, that’s true. Right.” (Souma)
It doesn’t seem like she is playing tough here or anything.
Am I just overthinking?
After that, I confirmed the cautionary points once again, gave her the healing items I bought, and after hammering into her that she shouldn’t be reckless, it was finally time for her to go.
“Well then, I am off!” (Train)
“Y-Yeah, be careful.” (Souma)
Even when seeing her walk off gallantly, I couldn’t hold back my uneasiness.
And so, I spent two hours smacking a torch.
Actually, I have tried reviving the enemies of this dungeon using Train-chan in the game.
A lot of experimentation has been done to level up using Train-chan, and it is true that Train-chan would show up if you stay cooped in this dungeon until the time comes.
But that experiment didn’t come to fruition.
…Because Train-chan, who is pulling the monsters, falls down the cliff and dies in most cases.
Of course, the one dying is a game NPC, but with the possibility of her dying then, I can’t exactly say it won’t happen here.
That’s the reason why I went through the trouble of preparing two Magic Gems.
(In the worst case scenario, I will cast Feather Fall myself!) (Souma)
I have no experience in casting a spell on a falling target, but I just have to do it as I usually do.
I am already used to targeting fast monsters in the game.
I don’t plan on failing when the time comes.
The clock eventually hits the 2 hour mark.
(Is it about time?) (Souma)
I pass my time on high alert so that I am ready anytime Train-chan falls.
And then, after around 10 minutes…
At the time when I was beginning to get uneasy that maybe something happened to her…
A shout pushed against me.
At the same time as this happened, I caught sight of Train-chan.
She looks like a speck because of the distance, but it is certainly her who jumped off the cliff as if trying to escape from the chasing shadows.
(…So it was unnecessary worry, huh.) (Souma)
My heart was squeezed when Train-chan jumped off the cliff, but it seems like she properly used Feather Fall.
She was falling slowly here truly as if she were a feather.
“I did it, Souma-san!” (Train)
Just when I was about to wave back at her who was saying this while waving, I noticed…
“Behind you!!” (Souma)
But there’s no time.
It was already too late by the time Train-chan looked back.
One of the armored knights that were chasing after her had jumped from the cliff and had coincidentally landed close to her.
The spear of the falling armored knight lands straight on her!
Train-chan let out a scream and twisted her body in pain.
Having been hit by the spear, because of the side-effect of Feather Fall, she gets blown away with astonishing force.
The ground is close.
I immediately activate a skill.
I close the distance with Godstep Cancel and catch her.
Maybe because of the effect of the spell, her body was light like a feather.
That further fanned my uneasiness.
“! Right, the healing item!” (Souma)
I stupidly spaced out there.
I soon came back to my senses, reprimanding myself that this is not the time for that, and I brought out a healing potion from the poach.
I can’t take my leisure time in making her drink it.
I hesitated for only an instant and immediately smashed the healing potion onto her body.
The light effect and the sound effect that came a little later.
Her HP is recovering.
It should be…
“Oi, are you okay?! Stay with me!!” (Souma)
She is not answering my call.
I brought out one more healing potion from the poach in a hurry and tried to throw it onto her, but…
A small hand stopped me.
When I looked down, Train-chan was looking at me with her eyes open.
Looks like she won’t be dying here.
This is the moment that scared me the most since coming to this world.
I take a deep breath.
“Let’s move for now.” (Souma)
It would be troubling if more armored knights were to rain down.
I ignore the thunderous sounds from the back and carry her off with hurried steps.
I tried using a healing potion on her again after that, but she said it would be a waste and was adamant in not accepting it.
Despite that, she recovered in around 5 minutes and…
“Ah, oi.” (Souma)
Train-chan shook me off from stopping her, escaped from my arms, standing on the ground with her own legs.
And then, she faced back towards me…
“I lowered my guard a bit at the end there, but…but I properly did it.” (Train)
And said this with a prideful smile.
And then, she asked me as if she were a puppy seeking praise from her owner.
“Was I…of use to you, Souma-san?” (Train)
She probably finds the utmost joy in being useful for her comrades.
Just by watching her waiting with bated breath for me to agree with her made me understand this.
But I shook my head to the sides.
“I am sorry, but the experiment this time around wasn’t for my sake.” (Souma)
I push a small piece of paper onto her arm while she is confused.
And then, after waiting for the writing to show up, I said…
“…Congratulations on leveling up.” (Souma)
The paper I pushed onto her when she had her eyes wide open had this written briefly.
[Ina Trail: LV57]
…On this day, Train-chan graduated from being a beginner adventurer.