“One Hit Kill”
It’s been about twenty minutes since Mil and I started working together, or rather, since we introduced ourselves, began working with her.
The flower-shaped demon beast, Death Flower Ivy, still hasn’t been found.
We still have plenty of time, but I would be happy if we could find it sooner rather than later.
Wasn’t I supposed to be a super lucky girl with a luck value of 999? Maybe it’s because there’s a super unlucky girl next to me that my good luck is overshadowed.
Anyway, since we had some free time walking in the forest, I asked Mil about something that had been on my mind.
“Why were you still in the forest?”
“I found your pouch about thirty minutes ago, so I thought you would have left by now.
You’ve already passed the test, right?”
It shouldn’t have taken more than ten minutes to leave the forest from where we found the pouch.
Yet, Mil had come all the way to the deeper parts of the forest where I was searching.
It was clearly odd.
Did she get lost because of bad luck?
“Um… I was looking for you, Sachie-san,” Mil said.
“I felt bad about not thanking you for helping me find my pouch, so I wanted to help you out.
But then I started to worry that being around you might bring bad luck.
I was thinking about what to do when I got lost in the forest and ended up walking on an animal trail, where I ran into those three people.”
“You’re very unlucky, as usual,” I said.
As expected of the unlucky girl with a luck value of 0.
In the end, her bad luck led her down an unfortunate path.
But why did those people confront her just by passing by on the road? Wouldn’t they just keep going like normal?
If they had seen each other at the exam venue, they would have known that they were both exam participants, but Mil couldn’t have known that she already had the embryo of the Death Flower Ivy.
Feeling my inner doubt, Mil seemed to sense it and spoke apologetically.
“At first, they talked to me kindly.
They asked if I had obtained the embryo of the Death Flower Ivy, and when I answered and showed it to them as a reference, their attitude suddenly changed.”
“Why would you be so stupidly honest and show it to them?”
It’s better to be more suspicious of others.
I don’t think it’s good to answer honestly to everything asked of you.
Mil then made a tearful excuse.
“Bu-but they looked like they were in a lot of trouble…!” Mil protested.
“That’s just an act.
They probably had the intention of stealing the embryo from a weak-looking person like you.
You shouldn’t just reach out to someone who looks like they’re in trouble.
Nothing good ever comes of it, so it’s best to ignore it,” I replied.
“Then why did you help me?” Mil asked.
I was hit with a great comeback.
I even thought to myself, “She’s right.”
I had also reached out to this girl in distress.
Yet, I was giving advice like I knew better, which was clearly contradictory.
Mil seemed to realize that I was saying something weird, and looked at me as if to say, “Isn’t that contradictory?”
“You little Red Riding Hood…” I teased.
“Please, stop it! Don’t take off my hood! Don’t turn it inside out!” Mil pleaded.
Having played a harmless prank, I felt better.
While engaging in this banter, Mil and I continued deeper into the forest.
Honestly, we were just wandering around without any real direction, but would we really be able to find the Death Flower Ivy like this? Not just for Mil’s sake, but for mine as well.
With this in mind, I asked Mil why she had taken the entrance exam for the Magic Academy.
“Huh?” Mil looked surprised.
“Even though you were intimidated by those aristocrats, you seemed to really want to attend the Magic Academy.
Do you have a reason for wanting to become a National Mage?” I asked.
I had been wondering about this for a while now.
I already knew that Mil was a timid and unlucky girl.
That’s why some things about her seemed strange.
As the name suggests, a Mage is someone who uses “magic” as a “technique” for fighting.
Nowadays, even those who contributed to the development of magical technology are also called Mages, so the definition is becoming vague.
Many of those who are called Mages are those who make a living by hunting magical beasts.
Hunting magical beasts requires considerable mental strength.
It’s hard to imagine a timid person like Mil even standing in front of one.
However, Mil seemed to have a desire to become a National Mage, more than anyone else.
For this reason, she seemed to be determined to attend the Magic Academy and was participating in this exam with a strong determination.
“I guess it was foolish of me to think that someone as unlucky as me could become a national alchemist,” said Mil, who had just been insulted by some of the noble students.
But deep down, she probably didn’t want to give up, because her expression at that moment looked very regretful.
What could be the reason that drove Mil to have such a determination?
“If you don’t want to answer, it’s okay.
I may have asked an impolite question,” I said.
“No, it’s not something I need to hide,” replied Mil, who then told me the reason why she participated in the entrance exam.
“I want a lot of money,” she said.
“A lot of money.
Otherwise, my mother won’t be able to live for more than five years,” Mil said.
She had a materialistic thought despite her gentle appearance, but it seemed that her mother’s situation was related to her desire for money.
“My hometown is a small village called Olivie, where my mother works in the fields.
She raised me by herself, and until a few years ago, she was very healthy and active, but one day, she suddenly collapsed while working in the field and was diagnosed with a serious illness.”
“A serious illness?”
It seems that she needs to be treated in a big hospital in the capital city of Blossom, and we need to pay a huge medical fee that small clinics in the nearby towns and villages cannot handle.”
“So, you need a lot of money?”
Mil nodded with a serious expression.
If I become a national alchemist, the country will provide a huge research grant for magical research, and I plan to use that money to cure my mother’s illness.
If I graduate from the magic school as soon as possible, I can just make it within the five-year time limit.”
“So that’s why Mil wants to enroll in the magic school and become a national mage,” I said.
As a farmer’s daughter, it would be nearly impossible for her to earn the huge medical expenses within five years.
She could borrow money from someone if she had someone to rely on, but given the amount she needed, it would have been difficult.
Becoming a national mage was the only option left for her.
After all, Mulberry had also saved up a considerable amount of money after becoming a national mage, so it wouldn’t take her long to save up for the medical expenses.
If she had some talent in magic, it was only natural for her to come up with this idea.
And if she had as much talent as I predicted, it was no surprise that this idea came to her first.
“Maybe my mother’s illness was caused by my misfortune, so this is something I absolutely must do,” Mil said.
I understood Mil’s reasons for wanting to become a national mage once again, and I couldn’t help but smile quietly.
I felt a sense of closeness with her and found myself telling her my story.
“I also have someone I want to help desperately,” I said.
“To help that person, I thought becoming a national mage was the best option, so I’m taking the entrance exam at this magic school,” I explained.
I didn’t tell her to reciprocate her explanation, but rather because I wanted her to know.
I couldn’t help feeling happy when I realized we shared the same goal.
“So let’s both pass the entrance exam and graduate successfully,” I said.
“Yeah, that would be great,” Mil replied, nodding slowly.
She smiled quietly beneath her hood, and I felt even happier.
But then, suddenly, Mil’s gaze was drawn to something in the depths of the forest.
“I found it,” she said.
“What did you find?” I asked, confused.
Without answering, Mil ran off, and I followed her.
Soon, we came across a huge green monster, a magical beast that looked like a combination of a flower bud and a vine.
The bud had three grooves that made it look like a face, and the beast had numerous vines growing from its lower half that it used as legs, crawling on the ground.
It was creepy, to say the least.
“Could this be the Dead Flower Ivy?”
“Yes, that’s right.
It’s a bit bigger than the one I fought before,” replied Mil, indicating that this was indeed the target they were supposed to defeat.
But how did Mil detect the location of the Dead Flower Ivy so quickly, even though she was still a considerable distance away from the beast?
“Did you use ‘scouting magic’?” I asked.
“Yes, I did,” Mil confirmed.
I remembered that Mulberry had taught me about this.
Scouting magic allows the user to scatter fragments of their own magical energy and sense the magic of others.
Beasts have magical energy flowing through their bodies, and they unconsciously release that energy to protect themselves.
As a result, scouting magic detects beasts more strongly than humans.
I thought they were still quite far away, but apparently, scouting magic could detect them from that distance.
Mulberry had mentioned that the detection range of scouting magic varies depending on the user’s magical power.
Suddenly, the Dead Flower Ivy began to growl and swell up like a bud in front of them.
At the same time, its vine-like limbs flailed around and whipped the ground like a whip.
“That thing seems really temperamental,” I commented.
Mil and I dodged the flying debris and mud while keeping a safe distance.
If those vine-like limbs grabbed onto our arms or legs, we’d be in trouble.
We also had to be careful of the yellow-green liquid dripping from the bud at the top of the beast, which was probably the “poison” the examiner had warned us about.
She had mentioned that it could absorb life force as well.
Maybe it is absorbed through those vines?
“I’ll stop the beast’s movements first, and then you can attack,” Mil suggested.
I stepped in front of her and told her to stay back while facing the raging beast.
She seemed to be suggesting something, but I didn’t think it was necessary.
“It’s okay, Mil doesn’t have to do anything.
As thanks for finding the beast, I’ll take care of it alone,” I said, dismissing Mil’s suggestion.
“What?” she exclaimed, surprised.
Without hesitation, I raised my right hand and aimed it at the Dead Flower Ivy.
I narrowed my eyes and focused on my target.
“But it’s too dangerous for one person alone! The only time I defeated a Dead Flower Ivy by myself was when it was just born, and this one is about to bloom…” Mil protested.
I smoothly chanted the familiar incantation: “Life or death – Death Scythe – Reap the enemy’s head in one fell swoop.”
To finish it off in one blow, I finished the spell: “Devil’s message – Death Notice!”
In an instant, a jet-black light shone from my hand, and the Dead Flower Ivy was enveloped in a black mist.
The giant plant, which had been thrashing around, suddenly froze in place.
“F… shaa…!” It made no more sounds and the next thing it emitted was a loud thud as it collapsed onto the ground.
It wouldn’t move again; it was in eternal slumber.
“There you go, one-hit kill!” I exclaimed.
Mil, who had been silent and frozen, finally spoke up in a surprised tone: “Um, what kind of magic was that?”
“Oh, that? It was the instant death magic, Devil’s Message Death Notice,” I replied, only to realize something.
Devil’s Message Death Notice, an instant death magic spell, wasn’t commonly known in the world of magic.
It was simply a defective spell that only worked once in a million uses for ordinary magicians.
“Ahahaha, I guess you don’t know this kind of minor magic.
It’s a flawed magic that’s useless to regular sorcerers.”
While casually explaining, I was able to cut off the outer layer of the bud with a knife.
Then, I found a fist-sized white ball deep inside and cut it off last.
This is the embryo, right?
I carefully wiped off the venom attached to the knife with a handkerchief and put it back in my pocket.
Finally, I turned to Mil who was still not convinced and decided to explain the instant death magic further.
” “Instant death magic” is a magic that, simply put, can rarely cause instant death to the opponent, but no one uses it because it hardly ever works.
Well, in my case, my luck is high, so I can definitely make it work.”
Even after explaining it in detail, Mil’s mouth remained open in disbelief.
Using instant death magic relying on luck is apparently quite rare.
In fact, I’m probably the only one in the country who does it.
“But talking about my magic is boring, right? I have to find another Instant death magic as soon as possible.”
I wanted to end the conversation and resume the search, but suddenly we heard the distinctive voice of the Death Flower Ivy again.
Mil’s reconnaissance magic must have been released because she was also surprised and turned to where the voice came from.
We looked at each other and immediately ran towards the direction of the voice, thinking that we could get the second embryo.
Then, we saw a flower-shaped magical beast, the Death Flower Ivy, as we expected.
However, there were several unexpected things that came into view.
Firstly, there was not only one but five Death Flower Ivies.
The sight of five giant plant-type magical beasts together was spectacular.
And the other surprising thing was…
“Why the hell isn’t our magic working on them?!”
“Don’t come over here! Stay away!”
“Don’t panic, you two!”
The three noble boys, who had stolen the embryo from Mil earlier, were there.
They seemed to be engaged in a battle with the five Death Flower Ivies, but they were clearly on the defensive.
Eventually, they were cornered at the base of a large tree that looked like a wall, and there was no escape route left.
Seeing all this information at once, both Mil and I were stunned.
However, the most surprising thing was…
“What’s going on with those things?”
The heads of the five Death Flower Ivies had bright red flowers blooming instead of pre-flowering plant buds, and I couldn’t understand why.
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