“Mitsuki Hisame…” (Souma)
Hisame gave a glance at me who called her name, but didn’t say anything and headed to the place where she defeated the Golden Wild Slime.
She didn’t show much interest as she bent down and picked something up.
“Could it be…” (Souma)
I look in disbelief at what Hisame picked up.
That’s something I have seen before…no, a way too common sparkly golden something…
She easily spoke the answer to that.
“Another Wild Slime Gold Coin, huh.” (Hisame)
Hearing this, even though I knew the answer, I was mysteriously shocked.
A Wild Slime Gold Coin is a Golden Wild Slime drop item, and it is an item that’s possible to submit as a delivery item.
However, the drop rate is a low 10%.
This small gold coin carries heavy meaning in this competition.
Normally, the subjugation and item delivery are counted as a reward of their own.
The drop rate of a Wild Slime Gold Coin is 10%, so it is actually 10 times more difficult to do compared to just defeating them.
That’s why the reward for it is 10 times that of a Wild Slime.
However, it shouldn’t be that easy to obtain an item that has a drop rate of 10%…
(I see, Critical Point…!) (Souma)
I thought the reason why Hisame cut the slime from the middle was because she was showing off her ability.
But that wasn’t all it was.
Cutting the middle means to cut the Critical Point.
Thanks to the critical modifier, the chances of Hisame obtaining the drop item double.
Double the drop rate means that it would also double the rewards for the delivery items, so the result is that the reward for defeating one would be 1.5 times more than if you were to defeat it normally.
(Crap, this was completely unexpected.) (Souma)
I had a sense of superiority thinking that the Critical Point drop rate up system was exclusive for the player.
However, the story characters have talked about how it is easier to get items if you hit the Critical Points.
This game system has properly been passed on to this world’s residents as well, and it is common knowledge for adventurers.
The reason why I didn’t think other people would aim for that is because I still have the bad habit of thinking of the people in this world as NPCs.
(No, you normally wouldn’t think that.) (Souma)
Even though I am using my arsenal of skills to its fullest, I still can’t get a hit on the Critical Point of the agile Golden Wild Slime yet.
Or more like, Hisame is probably the only character in Nekomimi Neko who would be able to achieve that.
Why is it that, out of the many famous characters, it had to be her showing up here?
This is just way too unfair.
(Now that I think about it, Hisame is practically tailor-made for this competition…) (Souma)
High attack power to defeat the high defense goldens in one hit; can catch up with the running goldens and accurately aim for their Critical Point; movement speed that allows her to quickly move to the many spawn points that exist.
If it is Hisame who has all those 3 points, there’s a chance she will be bringing out a high score that far surpasses my expectation.
I said we would be fine if we defeated 50, but that’s out of the question.
Even considering 80 impregnable is questionable now.
If we want to definitely win against Hisame, we have to defeat 100 –no, 120 or it would be impossible.
“I won’t challenge you to a serious match anymore.” (Hisame)
At that moment, Hisame said this as she put the coin in her pouch.
She is showing a disinterested look as always, but could this be…
“However, you didn’t prohibit me from competing with others for something. Then, I wouldn’t be breaking my promise with you—” (Hisame)
“Could it be that you are still bothered about having lost to me?” (Souma)
Hisame should be able to find enemies that are far more efficient for leveling than Golden Wild Slimes, and I find it hard to believe she would be troubled with money when she can use Teleport Stones as if nothing.
Could it be that the reason she participated in this competition was because…
“…Looks like you were having fun hunting at the corner.” (Hisame)
She blatantly changed the subject!
Did she really come here because she was mortified about losing to me and wanted revenge?
But Hisame didn’t falter at all at my gaze of suspicion.
There were no strange signs from her face and attitude; a perfect poker face.
If I had to point out anything different from usual, it would be that her cat ears are wiggling around.
Hisame continued speaking as if nothing while her cat ears were moving dizzyingly.
“But there’s no need to go ahead from here. I have already killed plenty.” (Hisame)
However, her cat ears perked up pridefully when she said that.
I have a bad feeling about this.
“…I wonder about that. In a competition, you can’t tell what’s going to happen until you open the lid, you know?” (Souma)
I said that, but I was slightly daunted by her confidence.
Moreover, even though I tried to shake her there, her cat ears were still standing and didn’t move.
It seems like she really wasn’t fazed by that.
“If you really think that, struggle. I will be done soon.” (Hisame)
The question I leaked out unconsciously made her cat ears react a bit.
“…Meaning that I will return to the city in 10 minutes. I will wait for you there. Don’t make me wait too long this time around, okay?” (Hisame)
Saying this, Hisame turned her back.
She went through the opposite direction with the same speed that my eyes barely can keep up with.
Being called while I was absentmindedly watching the direction she disappeared into, I returned to my senses.
It of course was Ringo who was looking up at me worried.
Maybe because of the game setting, or because her memories have been robbed, Ringo didn’t show much emotion at first, but I feel like she has been slowly showing more and more emotion lately.
I should properly talk to her here and soften her worries.
“…It is okay, Ringo.” (Souma)
I made proper eye contact with Ringo, placed a hand on her shoulder, and said this firmly.
“You can get 3 times the reward even with 2nd place!” (Souma)
For some reason, she made a really displeased face.
That said, I would like to get my spot as high as possible and earn as much money as possible.
From then on, I wiped off our startegy until now, and thought of a new plan while considering the existence of Hisame.
First, stop competing with Hisame.
No matter how I think about it, I doubt we will be able to match the killing speed of Hisame.
From here on, we should move in a way that doesn’t intersect with Hisame.
We encountered Hisame a little south from the center of the map.
She came from the northeast, and ran off southwest.
I can predict her movements to a certain degree with that information.
Hisame told me: ‘You were having fun hunting at the corner’.
In other words, I imagine she was tracking me with the Explorer Ring.
If she wanted to meet me before that, she could have done so.
And yet, she didn’t. Meaning that she didn’t have the intention to.
Then, why did she come to meet me now?
Probably because she will be defeating goldens in the opposite direction of me. She has most likely gone around the whole north from here to a certain degree.
She was steamrolling, or maybe it would be better to call it carpet bombing.
I wouldn’t think of something that fearsome for anyone aside from her. It is Hisame’s mobility that makes me think like that.
With those points in mind, I think she most likely moved in a zig-zag from east to west while slowly going from north to south.
If that’s the case, it is understandable why she would run off southwest after arriving from the northeast.
I have no solid proof here, but let’s form our thoughts with that basis.
In that case, how should I be moving?
One option would be to go full force to the north.
Even she wouldn’t be able to defeat enemies that haven’t spawned.
If her steamrolling plan happened at the northernmost side at first, there’s the chance that monsters still hadn’t respawned yet.
Even if 10 spawn points have no monsters yet, we might be able to find around 6 spawn points with a whole lot of them.
But that’s a poor plan.
The north side has a lot of participants aside from Hisame, and there’s the chance Hisame would return to finish the ones she hasn’t dealt with.
Moving takes time, and if that traveling doesn’t bear any results, it would be shameful.
In that case, what about doing the opposite? Returning to the south.
Hisame went south, but if her movements are the same as before, it would take time for her to reach the edge of the south side.
Also, we began moving from the south slightly to the east, went to the southwest, made a turn, and reached close to the center.
If Hisame moved exactly as I have speculated here, the edge of the southeast side has still not been touched by either me or Hisame.
The bad points of this would be that we might be clashing with the participants aiming for the corners.
Also, while we are moving around the southeast, Hisame will be taking control of all the other areas, holding the danger of not having any hopes for points in other locations.
(No, even with that, we should go.) (Souma)
I have already decided to not compete with Hisame head on.
Then, the best plan here to obtain the most points would be to head southeast.
“Ringo, let’s return south. There might be places where no one has touched yet.” (Souma)
When I said this, Ringo nodded lightly.
“…Want to divide?” (Ringo)
She must have felt a threat from the presence of Hisame, she even proposed this.
But I immediately shook my head to the sides.
“No, we won’t be changing our fighting style. I think our way of doing things until now is the best one.” (Souma)
I thought for an instant only about dividing to increase the efficiency, but it would most likely prove the opposite effect.
Or more like, I don’t think I would be able to defeat a Golden Wild Slime alone.
It seems like Ringo also can tell that our teamwork until now has been going well.
She immediately agreed.
“For now, let’s prioritize moving rather than searching for goldens. We are moving full force.” (Souma)
Confirming that Ringo nodded once again, we began moving southeast while I used Godstep Cancel.
And then, 1 hour passed since the competition began.
We were at 22 at the 30 minute mark, but now it is 3 times that: 66.
Our plan hit the mark, and we managed to find several spawn points that were untouched.
The next topic to worry about was how to defeat the packs of Golden Wild Slimes, but we skillfully utilized their fleeing nature to our advantage.
The fleeing type monsters run away if they are attacked or get close to them, but different from when they get attacked, if you get close to them, they will run a certain distance and stop there.
We also utilized the rule that monsters in outbreaks can’t get out from the area.
We closed the distance to the goldens little by little, separated the pack, and defeated them one by one when they were divided; or we would corner them all the way to the border of the area, and would defeat them for sure there.
Of course, chances of failure increase against many, so we failed to defeat 2-3, but we managed to gain a lot of points here.
We didn’t look to the sides until we reached the southern tip and the full speed run of Ringo is faster than even mine, so she managed to keep up with my Godstep Cancel movement that had breaks in between, which served heavily in the success of this plan.
Also, there were points outside the southeast area where there were still goldens.
I don’t know why, but it seems like Hisame didn’t go all the way to the edge of the south side.
It didn’t go the same way as the southeast with 9-10 in one point, but we did manage to add a few of them to our score.
Also, there was an unexpected result from this.
The Ninja Sword: Golden Sakura.
This is a rare drop from Golden Wild Slimes that has a drop rate of 0.1%, and it is a powerful item, but it isn’t included in the delivery items.
Honestly speaking, this time around, I would have preferred golden coins, but I can’t be picky here.
Thinking of the drop rate, being able to get even one can be considered fortunate.
I decided to use it gratefully and had Ringo equip it.
By using the Golden Sakura that is far better than the Heat Knife, she can now defeat goldens in one hit, increasing the efficiency of the hunt…not really, but it seems like she took a liking to it.
In the first place, there’s a lot of unknowns when it comes to the strength of Ringo. I don’t know if she surpasses Princess Shermia in the Attack on the Capital.
Now that I think about it, Ringo had unbelievable strength for a level 1, including the Lightning Strike, but I doubt she would be able to show overwhelming strength like at the time in the Attack on the Capital event.
That event has a level average of 100, and Princess Shermia was going against level 90 bird monsters with HP on the low side.
Even so, I doubt she could defeat a monster like that in one hit with a Lightning Strike that simply scratched a rock.
In that case, Shermia wasn’t level 1 at that time. Maybe her equipment played a part in it, or there was an event modifier placed on her then.
Anyways, with that Golden Sakura, I have the confidence to say that we managed to obtain the closest to best result we could have obtained in the limited time we have at the plain.
(That’s still not enough…) (Souma)
Seeing how Hisame acted, 66 doesn’t give me peace of mind.
I tried searching to see if there’s any others I missed, but I couldn’t find any goldens anymore.
We encountered a number of teams while at it, but it seems like they didn’t have much luck either.
Most people were already going back to the city.
That was at the time when 1 hour had passed since the competition began.
And yet, we found no goldens to an abnormal extent.
Were the Golden Wild Slimes really already hunted down completely?
It is true that there were cases in the game when the remaining people would aim for the monsters missed when there’s someone who is defeating a whole ton of monsters.
(It is over already, huh…) (Souma)
Now that I think about it, we managed the 50 which was our objective at first.
I didn’t expect the superhuman Hisame to show up here, but this is still quite the good result.
It is not set that we have no chance for 1st place.
I checked the watch and it is showing it is 3:11 p.m.
That means I haven’t seen new slimes in more than 10 minutes.
All the Wild Slimes must have been defeated by someone already.
We worked plenty hard already.
Putting an end to it here is most likely the correct answer.
“Then, Ringo, it is about time we…” (Souma)
Go back –is what I was about to say, but I stopped.
(…No, it is…not over yet.) (Souma)
It would be one thing if it is after the 2 hours when the monster outbreak is over, but the announcement for the end of the competition -which I don’t know how they can tell- from the guild, has not happened yet.
Since it hasn’t happened, it means that there’s still goldens in this area.
(There’s still more that were missed? But…) (Souma)
What surfaced in my mind was the small rumor about this Deus Plain.
If that’s true…
I check the watch again.
We can still make it to that place.
“Ringo, we might still be able to manage something here. We are heading southwest!” (Souma)
I shouted this and ran off without confirming her response.
At the very least, there’s no worry of her getting lost.
Our next destination is at the southwest of the Deus Plain, where the biggest rock in this area is located.