Chapter 11 – Problem Children?

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 I approach the two newcomer parties that I am in-charge of.
There are eight boys and girls. 

 From the children, I hear a small voice saying “yay, he’s a Hero!”

 I’m not a Hero anymore though hah…

 Checking their lines, there are five people in the 9th Squad and three in the 10th Squad. 

 Sophia is in the 10th Squad. 

 Well, even though as a beginner she allowed herself to be cornered by more than ten Orcs, she was still able to hold on for a short while.
No one would be corrected if they were to call her an anticipiated rookie.

 By the way, Sophia’s clothes are now the same as the other beginners.
To be honest, her previous attire was cuter. 

“I’m the one who was introduced earlier by Selma, Orn.
Let’s do well together for the next three days.”

 After I greet them, the newcomers reply “please take care of us!” 

“So then, is there anyone late in the 10th Squad?”

 Fundamentally, parties have five people, at most six, this is the standard theory. 

 If the number is too small, there’s a chance that they will be unable to deal with unexpected situations, if too large, conversely the difficulty level of effective cooperation will jump.
Moreover, demonic beasts have the tendency of attacking areas with more people, so with more people, it becomes challenging for the Defender to attract attacks. 

 Therefore, five people is currently considered the optimal number. 

“No, we are a three person party.”

 A young boy with gold hair and purple eyes belonging to the 10th Squad replies. 

 Among the two parties, the 9th Squad is composed of three boys and two girls, and the 10th Squad, one boy and two girls. 

“Three person party? That’s rare huh.”

 I unintentionally spill my thoughts. 

 For parties, there are greater risks associated with fewer people than than more people.
This definitely isn’t a Clan that doesn’t understand that, so why are there only three people?

 As far as I can tell from an earlier brief glance, there are two six person parties.
They could have transferred one from each into the 10th Squad. 

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 As beginners, it should still be flexible for them to change parties. 

“That’s because there’s no one else who can keep up with us.”

 The boy says, so full of confidence.

 I see.
Since they are promising rookies, compared to the other beginners, the difference in levels is too big. 

 Regardless, this boy at this age already has this kind of attitude huh. 

 There are some explorers who, along with the improvement in their own abilities, also become more arrogant.
If he’s already like this now, I can only be worried about the future. 

 ……Perhaps, it’s my job to rectify his personality? 

 …No, the Clan probably has their own plans.
Yeah, that must be right.
So then there’s no need for me to do anything of my own accord as an outsider.
Definitely not the case that I think it’ll be troublesome so it’d be easier to leave it. 

“Okay, there’s no issue if all the members are present.
Moving on, there’s not much time, so would it be okay for everyone to tell me just your name and role?”

 I get each person to do a self-introduction. 

 After the self-introduction of the 9th Squad, it’s the turn of the 10th Squad.

“I’m the leader of this party, Logan Hayward.
My job is Enchanter, I’m the man who will eventually surpass Selma!”

 The Enchanter of the 10th Squad is this guy. 

 Common to all parties in “Night Sky’s Silver Rabbit”, the Enchanter is the one that takes command during battle.

 This young boy being the one taking command is already enough to make me worried…

 Maybe there’s still a chance that he won’t have any problems with commanding battles, that’s something you can’t know until you see him in actual battle. 

“Ah, please do your best.
Next.”

“Yes! My name is Caroline Inglot.
Job, Defender!”

 Next to speak is an emerald-eyed girl with slightly curly, chestnut coloured hair that extended to her waist. 

 Her stature and appearance are similar to that of her peers, except for one area.
Where that is, I won’t say. 

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 Anyway, she’s a cheerful child.

 We’re short on time, and we should be proceeding with the next person, but since next is Sophia whom I already know, and there’s something I really need to make sure, I ask Caroline a question. 

“You don’t seem to be wearing any kind of armour, will you be equipping it after entering the labyrinth?”

“You too, even brother is asking me that? I’m an amourless, shieldless Defender!”

 No, even if you say that with a smug face.

 Defender is a job that takes attacks from demonic beasts on behalf of their allies.
Armour and shields should be essential. 

 ……No, there’s just one.

 Apart from the Hero party and “Night Sky’s Silver Rabbit”, there’s another S Rank party Defender who doesn’t equip armour or use a shield. 

“Are you be aiming to be an evasion-type Defender?”

“That’s right! I don’t want to be touched by demonic beasts! But I want to chop up lots of demonic beasts, so I became the one that will get closest to them, Defender!”

 I want to hold my head in my hands.

 The strength of evasive Defenders is directly related to their combat experience.
It’s not something that a beginner can just do, and what’s more, evasion-types are helpless against demonic beasts they see for the first-time. 

 That S Rank woman possesses a special power, so it’s something that’s achievable for her.
If you work yourself to death, there’s a chance you might be able to approach her, but if you don’t have a special power like that woman, I’m willing to declare that you won’t be able to stand on the same stage as her. 

 Still, the reason for becoming a Defender is because you want to chop up lots of demonic beasts…

 Isn’t the 10th Squad really a gathering of problem children? ……No, Sophia isn’t a problem child so it might not be– ah, speaking of which, she broke her promise with Selma and went into the labyrinth without permission didn’t she? With that, I can’t claim a hundred percent that she isn’t a problem child…

“It might be better if you give up on being an evasion-type.
Did the Clan not advise you to stop?”

“Isn’t it obvious that she was told so? Despite that, this guy’s just ignoring them.”

 My question is answered by Logan.

“Well, Logan also doesn’t listen to what the teachers say! You can’t talk about other people!”

“Ah, um, quarrelling is, not good…!”

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 Logan and Caroline start arguing, and Sophia is trying to stop them.

 My head is seriously starting to hurt.

“Haaa… next.”

“Ah, yes! I’m Sophia Claudel! My position is Rearguard Attacker, job, Magician.”

 Although the way she introduced herself is exactly the same as the members of the 9th Squad, for some reason I feel relieved. 

“Alright, I’ve remembered everyone’s faces and names.
Once again, let’s work well together for the next three days.
Other squads are starting to move.
Let’s move out too.”

 I stand at the front and follow the back of the 8th Squad. 

 Then, we enter the Great Labyrinth.

 Finally, the guided exploration has begun.

“While we are In the Great Labyrinth, I will follow you all from the back, so you should be sticking behind the 7th and 8th Squads.”

 After notifying the leader of the 9th Squad and Logan, I move to the rear.

 In the Great Labyrinth, the beginneres will be proceeding in two files, and the leaders will have to be wary of the surrounding back, left and right of their files for anything that appears. 

  ◇

“Hey hey! Why’s someone from the Hero Party exploring with us? The Hero Party doesn’t think our Clan is a rival?”

 Shortly after entering the Great Labyrinth, Caroline speaks to me.

 The other newcomers are tense and stiff, but this kid looks no different from how she was on the surface. 

 Should I say she’s bold or something else?

“Did you not hear what Selma said? I’ve already left the Hero party.
That’s why I can participate.
Besides, when I was part of the Hero party, I did see ‘Night Sky’s Silver Rabbit’ as a threat.
I was always paying attention to their movements.”

“Ehhh, why did you leave!? Everyone looks up to the Hero Party! What a waste!”

 Don’t go there…

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 It also doesn’t seem like she’s saying that because she’s two-faced, this is a type I’m bad with. 

“Whatever.
It’s not something that concerns you.”

“Ehh, why nottt! Tell me! Eh, what was it again, ah! It’s for my future reference!”

“…………Differences in aims, something like that.”

“Oooh! Differences in aims! What a cool way of saying it!”

 That’s something you’d usually say when you’re trying to avoid further questions, but cool? This kid doesn’t know how to read between the lines. 

 However, she seems convinced, so all’s well that ends well. 

 But the conversation with Caroline didn’t end there.

 While I thought it was bothersome, I also couldn’t flatly refuse her, so I listened to her speak and replied appropriately. 

  ◇◇◇◇

 Two white wolf-like demonic beasts, White Wolves approach the “Night Sky’s Silver Rabbit” group from behind. 

 The White Wolves rely on their sense of smell to gradually draw closer. 

 –However, the White Wolves are unable to catch up to the group of people from “Night Sky’s Silver Rabbit”.

 This is because all of a sudden, the ground uplifts into spears that skewer the White Wolves. 

 The reason why the ground rose was simple.
Orn had activated timed magic on the ground. 

 The skewered White Wolves turn into black mist, leaving only magic stones in their place.

 While talking to Caroline, Orn had sensed the presence of demonic beasts from far behind.

 He then calculated how long it would take for those beasts to arrive at his current position, and set magic into the ground that would activate at that time.

 Orn, from the moment he entered the labyrinth, had already subjugated numerous demonic beasts. 

 If the demonic beasts Orn defeated were instead allowed to catch up with their group, obviously a battle would occur, stalling their progress.

 The leaders thought they were fortunate that only a few demonic beasts had approached them, but in fact, Orn was subduing the monsters from the back without anyone noticing.

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