EXPLOSIVE NEET’S JOB HUNTING
Translator: Sine Nomine.
Editor(s): Vysne, TaintedDreams, Skythewood
Some time had passed since the disturbance with the evil god’s minions.
Yunyun and I learned magic, graduated from the school, and went our separate ways.
Since Yunyun learned intermediate magic back then, she joined the self-defense group to hunt down monsters so that she could eventually learn advanced magic.
As for me—
“Good morning, NEET sis! Feed me now!”
“Komekko, don’t call me NEET sis. Where did you learn that word from?”
I spent my idle days being called a NEET by my sister.
“Listen, Komekko. I’m not a NEET. A NEET is trash that does not want to work. I’m looking for a job, but couldn’t find one. So I’m technically not a NEET.”
“Then what is it?”
“NEET sis, I want to eat!”
I held my head in pain, after being habitually called this weird name by my sister who bore no ill intention.
—in the Home of the Crimson Magic, except for a few people who managed the necessary shops, most people worked on manufacturing the local specialty.
The Home of the Crimson Magic’s local specialty.
That was high-quality magic items and potions, made using our naturally powerful mana.
For example, the Skill Up Potion that Yunyun and I drank as if it was merely water. If it was sold outside the village, a single bottle would cost tens of millions eris.
After I graduated, I found out about this and was so upset. Why didn’t I keep at least one bottle back then?
The Crimson Magic Clan could create a lot of the highest quality magic items.
After all, arch wizard was an advanced job among wizards, which could not be achieved easily.
Yet the people here had the potential to become arch wizards at the moment they were born.
The magic items created by elite wizards supported the village’s economy.
“…It would be great if there is a workshop willing to employ me today…”
I sighed as I prepared Komekko’s breakfast.
—Leaving the village as an adventurer to meet the person who taught me Explosion magic.
That was my goal.
To become an adventurer outside the village, I must first go to a city.
But there were powerful monsters around the Home of the Crimson Magic.
After using Explosion magic, I would be immobile, so I could not travel to a city alone.
There was a group of teleporters that made a living by sending people to distant places. They should be able to send me to a city…
“A single ticket to Alcanretia, the city of water and hot springs, costs 300,000 eris. I only have 4,000 eris right now… Is there any job to make money…”
I looked at my lean money pouch and sighed deeply.
I wanted to go to Axel, the city where rookie adventurers congregated.
But since it was a rookie town with only weak monsters nearby, Axel was not a popular destination for Crimson Magic Clansmen who could use advanced magic.
To operate a long distance teleport, one must first go to the destination and record a save point. The local teleporters do not have Axel as an available location.
Thus, to reach Axel, I must teleport to Alcanretia, then proceed on foot or by carriage from there.
Firstly, I must find a job to earn money for the teleport fee…
—As I was thinking about this, I noticed a neighbor approaching from the opposite direction.
“Hey, Megumin, looking for a job today too? Or want to give up on working and join Anti-Demon King Army Guerilla Unit? You can join us and Yunyun to defend the village’s peace.”
“No, no… But, that introverted kid really joined.”
“Yes, she is quite enthusiastic. She says she will protect her comrades this time and learn advanced magic.”
Although the group name “Red Eyed Dead Slayers” embarrassed Yunyun, she joined these NEET’s self-defense force in order to train and learn advanced magic.
She trained relentlessly in order to gain experience with Buzucoily and the others, who were all elite wizards despite being NEETs.
“By the way, Buzucoily, is it really okay for you not to work? Your parents are always complaining.”
“My parents and society currently look down on me, but soon a great battle will come where we could use our power. To prepare for this, I must train myself continually.”
Buzucoily said and clenched his fist under his gloves, which groaned from the tightness.
“Bye, Megumin. As a fellow NEET, I will help you if you have any non-financial problem.”
“I, I am not a NEET! I’m looking for a job!”
As I quickly retorted, Buzucoily turned, waved, and left.
Oh dear, oh dear.
In Komekko’s eyes, I’m just the same as that guy.
No matter what, I must find a job today…!
In the Home of the Crimson Magic, creating magic items was the most profitable.
Thus, after graduation, I visited a lot of workshops for interviews…
“Today’s interview is at tailor shop owned by Chekera… Today I must…!”
I slapped my face to encourage myself as I walked towards the interview site.
“Welcome! My name is Chekera! An arch wizard who wields advanced magic! Owner of Crimson Magic Clan’s top tailor shop! You really came for the interview, Megumin.”
I did not know why he was wearing a cloak inside the shop. The owner of the only tailor shop in the village introduced himself and welcomed me. His name is Chekera.
This middle-aged shopkeeper seemed rather free. He went out of his way to maintain wind magic just to let his cloak flutter when I arrived.
After his self-introduction, he removed his cloak in satisfaction.
“Come in. My shop mainly manufactures magical fibers, used for making mana-enhancing robes. The strength of magical fibers depends on the maker’s magic power. So firstly, let me witness Megumin’s magic power.”
“Understood. Now witness my vast magic power!”
I confidently declared as I was brought inside the workshop.
In terms of mana amount, I was fairly confident.
“Can you direct your mana into this? You learned magic already, right? This is similar to using magic, just direct the mana here.”
Chekera explained and brought over some fabric.
I picked up a piece of fabric and infused it with my mana.
The white fabric was soon dyed with a dark color that was a favorite among Crimson Magic Clan.
The fabric transformation aroused my curiosity. I took the other pieces of fabric.
Infused them with mana as if I was normally using magic.
Infused them with mana…
“……Megumin. Hey, Megumin!”
As I infused my mana, my emotions became excited, and my eyes brightened.
Currently, my eyes must be glowing red.
I thought I must find a job today and must do my best!
The fabric that was being infused with mana turned black in an instance, then reddish black, and eventually bright red…
Suddenly, Chekera took the fabric.
And hurriedly threw it deep into the shop.
After the shout, red dyed fabric was frozen instantly.
Chekera looked pale.
“What are you doing! Are you trying to destroy my shop! A few seconds later, it would have exploded!”
“So-Sorry! But, but I was doing as you instructed…”
Oh no. This way, the ending would be the same as the other workshops…!
Chekera tilted his head, bewildered—
“Strange… Even if a fresh graduate exerts her full power, it should not be like this…”
He mumbled something and took out a handkerchief-sized cloth.
“You touch this cloth and infuse it with mana. Just your index finger would do.”
I did as instructed, lightly touching the cloth with my finger.
And it was dyed black, then became pure red as before…
Chekera used the same magic and froze the red handkerchief.
He slowly shook his head.
“Megumin, your natural mana reserve is too strong. And you cannot control it perfectly.”
He looked at me regretfully.
“Megumin, your father Hyoizaburo also possesses great mana reserve, but he always creates some weird magic items. Having a great mana reserve is a natural endowment, so you should train your magic use and learn to control it. When you learn to control mana flow during infusion, you can come here again.”
I lost count of how many times I had been rejected.
—After leaving the shop, I felt lost.
It was the same in other workshops. I got fired on the first day.
It seemed my magic power was too strong.
Normally, this should be a good thing…
But the problem was I only learned Explosion magic. No wonder how I practice, I couldn’t understand how to control the amount of mana during infusion.
Explosion magic was very exhausting, so using it required full flow of power without restriction.
I did not know how to control my mana flow.
In the end, no magic item workshop wanted me.
Maybe I could help my father to make magic items for a bit of cash?
No, no. I understood very well my father’s magic items were all faulty and unsellable.
My poor family had no spare cash to employ me.
If it was like this, then…
I walked towards the potion-making workshop in the village—
“That’s how it is. Previously, I thought this place doesn’t pay as well as creating magic items, so I did not come here. But now, I can’t be picky. I am quite confident in making potions, please employ me.”
“It is admirable to be honest during job hunting, but can’t you be more polite? Say something like you wanted to cure a sick person or help the needy.”
“Then I’ll take my leave.”
I forcefully trespassed into the potion workshop and asked the shopkeeper for an interview.
I achieved some results in school for making potions.
Although I cannot make super difficult potions like the Skill Up Potion, I should be able to manage this work.
The shopkeeper looked troubled, but soon gave in and sighed.
“I already had enough workers here… but since you just needed short-term work to pay for teleport fee, it’s fine too.”
Success! I should have been more positive and went straight to the potion workshop!
It looked like money made me lose my way in life.
I must correct this fault, or my future companions would hate me.
“There are enough mixers. You can gather some ingredients. Go into the forest and hunt three One Strike Bears. Retrieve the liver.”
For the sake of my unknown companions in the future, now…
“……What did you say?”
“I said go and retrieve the liver of three One Strike Bears. Ah, this is a potion that will attract monsters. You can use it to lure them.”
The potion shopkeeper smiled happily.
To an ordinary adventurer, One Strike Bear was considered a powerful foe. But to a Crimson Magic Clansman who mastered advanced magic after graduation, it was merely a source of experience points.
But, for a specific reason, I could not preserve only the liver of One Strike Bear…
…It looked like I could not work in the potion shop either.
—After leaving the shop, I felt lost again.
Troublesome, so troublesome.
I, who was regarded as a genius, could not find a job.
I even lived off the food my sister acquired somewhere. I was hopeless.
The potion shopkeeper said that I could also be a tester for new potions.
In times of desperation, I should risk my life and test the strange medicines.
But I was physically smaller and weaker than other people of my grade, would I even qualify as a lab rat?
I ran out of options. In my current disturbed condition, I couldn’t find a solution.
Right, at this time there was only one thing to do.
To prepare for the event tonight, I should go back now and take a good rest.
—Late at night. The night was quiet except for some insect noises. While the residents were already asleep, there was an explosive noise in the Home of the Crimson Magic.
Shortly after, the bell towed to alert the entire village of an emergency.
“There it goes again!”
“I definitely won’t let you off today!”
Scoldings voices echoed through the village.
The adults were angry at having their sleep disturbed. They unleashed fire magic into the sky illuminate the area.
The bright sky made it seemed like it was daytime. Two suspicious silhouettes were moving around.
“Komekko, faster! Ouch! Komekko, don’t grab my legs. Grab my upper body!”
It was us.
“Sis, the fireworks are pretty tonight. Are we doing it again tomorrow?”
“The security should be tighter for the next few days… Never mind, if you want to see it, we’ll do it again tomorrow… Right, Komekko. You are grabbing the correct place this time, but go slightly slower…!”
After using Explosion magic in the night sky, I was exhausted to the point of immobility. Komekko was currently dragging me along.
My sister, who was still too young, could not possibly pull me along without aid.
I was placed on a sled and pulled along. The sled was too small, so part of me was protruding out.
Previously, Komekko was pulling on my lower body, so my head was on the ground. Now, I made her change to pull on my upper body…
“But if we don’t move fast, people will come, right?”
Hearing my sister, I merely moved my head slightly since I was totally exhausted. The adults continued to release magic into the sky and were slowly getting closer.
This was bad!
“Komekko, it’s fine to use more force! Retreat from here quickly!”
—Currently, the Home of the Crimson Magic was troubled at being attacked by the demon king’s army.
As for the attack, it was merely making an explosive noise in the night to disturb everyone’s rest and enrage them.
What was the purpose of this meaningless harassment?
Every time they tried to catch the perpetrator in the village’s surroundings, they failed.
Based on the massive explosion and the cunningness to escape capture, the village agreed unanimously that it was a terrorist attack by the cadres of the demon king’s army.
The next day morning, after we returned home.
“Get out of there!”
It was early in the morning and someone was knocking on the door.
I rubbed my sleepy eyes and opened the door.
“……What is it, Yunyun. So restless in the early morning. The neighbors still need to sleep.”
“Megumin, you’re not in the position to say that! I have been working non-stop to find the perpetrator of yesterday’s explosion!”
With heavy eye bags possibly from working overnight, Yunyun charged in as she ate her meal.
“Even if you complain to me about these, I also… The perpetrator was a cadre of the demon king’s army. You should save your complaints for the perpetrator.”
I immediately pretended to be ignorant. Yunyun frowned and suddenly brought her face really close.
“Eh. So Megumin thinks the recent explosions were caused by the demon king’s army?”
“Of course. It must be a cadre for it to be so formidable. The responsibility is truly too heavy for Yunyun and the other villagers.”
I said lightly. Yunyun narrowed her eyes.
“Eh! Even though the explosions only happened on days when Megumin went out job-hunting, this could still be explained as the work of the demon king’s army!”
Yunyun grabbed my shoulders and brought her face even closer.
“Of course! What? Are you suspecting me? Yunyun, you know that I can’t move after using magic!”
After being grabbed at my shoulders, I used my brains to think of a way out of this mess. Yunyun’s mouth started moving once more.
“Eh!?!? On the morning after each explosion, Komekko who usually wakes up early would sleep through the morning. Is it really coincidental!?”
Ah, not good!
“Wh-What? Are you really suspecting me? I’m so disappointed! I’m so disappointed in Yunyun! I thought Yunyun is my friend, but you actually think of me this way! True friends definitely will not suspect each other!”
Yunyun’s eyes glowed red. Arteries appeared on her cheeks. She used both hands to hold onto my head.
“If you think you will be forgiven simply because you talk about friendship, you are totally wrong!”
“Ahahah, stop! I know, I know. My head, my genius head!”
I confessed everything to Yunyun after my head was subjected to vigorous shaking.
“Seriously! Why is Megumin doing this! Are you stupid? Although Megumin has often been regarded as a genius, you are just one step away from being an idiot, right?”
I was ordered to sit straight on the floor and listen to her lecture.
Yunyun was now part of the self-defense force.
Although the self-defense force only had a name without any resources, they would still take the initiative to investigate such special situations.
What could I say? I was probably the prime subject ever since the first explosion incident..
“I admit it was my doing this time, but as a result, I also understand now that Yunyun suspects her friends so easily. I’m so disappointed.”
“You are still at it! Anyway, you should be grateful that I am the first to know! I don’t know what others would do if they find out! If the villagers find out that the genius Megumin, in whom everyone has great expectations, learned Explosion magic, you will be finished!”
Yunyun roared angrily as I shivered in fear.
Explosion magic was a useless magic.
It consumed an amount of mana beyond what normal people possessed, and unleashed a destructive force that was over-kill.
And it required a lot of skill points to learn. Wizards would regard someone who learned it as an idiot.
I sat straight and stole a glance at Yunyun.
“Don’t you think I have been enduring for a long time? It has been almost half a year since I learned Explosion magic. Even if my tolerance is strong, it will be at its limit soon.”
“Don’t use such strange method to excuse yourself! In any case, until the disturbance dies down, you are banned from using Explosion magic, understand!”
“I will actively find a way to compensate.”
“I, I understand! Don’t get so close. Don’t look at me like that!”
It was inconvenient to talk outside, so I invited Yunyun into the house.
“So what are your plans for the future? Still cannot find a job?”
Yunyun caressed Chomsuke, who was curled up on the table.
Even if you asked me that, I couldn’t help it without a job.
“This cannot keep up for long. As a last resort, I will have to sell my body.”
—The potion shopkeeper suggested the job of tasting new potions.
“Ah? Wh-What are you saying! Hey, Megumin. What did you just say! Pull yourself together!”
Yunyun’s face turned red, then green. She panicked.
“After all, this body is all I have left. But my body is thinner and weaker than most people. I still need to ask again if I can really do it or not.”
I did not avoid the usual physical education lessons for no reason.
I had confidence that my constitution was the top in class, counting from the bottom.
Even a lab rat needed to be someone with a strong, healthy body.
But if it was to test for negative side effects, perhaps a weak body would be more suitable?
“No, no, no! Although you have a thin body, you are only 13 years old. There is still chance for growth, it’s too early to give up! I think Megumin is merely suffering from malnutrition! In future, I will treat you some milk……”
Yunyun expressed sympathy for me.
But why was she staring at my chest?
As Yunyun said, I was weaker than others because of malnutrition and lack of exercises.
But why milk?
If she was treating, I would prefer something that can fill my stomach…
“But since the potion shopkeeper suggested this work, I think it’s better not to let down his good will.”
“That uncle looked so friendly, and yet he suggested you to do this? Unforgivable. This is exploitation!”
Yunyun was sitting calmly so far. Now she suddenly stood up, clenching her fists.
What was wrong with her? She looked like she was about to rush out and beat someone up.
Tasting new potions would be risky, but there was no need to be this angry.
What should I say? For her to be this worried about me in my time of trouble, I felt a bit embarrassed.
“Although it is because of my financial difficulty, the shopkeeper is just trying to help me… I am a bit scared and nervous, but that shopkeeper is famously good, so there shouldn’t be any serious after-effects. It merely takes about half a day. Close my eyes and it will be over. It will be very relaxing.”
“Fam-Famously good!? That uncle is famous in what aspect? He already had children. This is unbelievable!”
I wanted to humor her, but I didn’t think she would get even angrier.
Yunyun’s eyes turned bright red in excitement.
What? Why was she so angry?
Did she think that since the shopkeeper had children of his own, he should not treat the children of other families as lab rats to test new potions?
“N-No problem, Yunyun. A few months ago, I had my 13th birthday, so I’m not a child anymore. And the shopkeeper also said he wants to test it on youths of this age…”
The medicine was probably used to inoculate youths of my age against sickness.
“Unforgivable, absolutely unforgivable! To think he wants to test it on youths of Megumin’s age? I will burn down his unethical shop!”
“Wait! Yunyun is really strange today. What’s wrong? Wait!”
I strolled along with Yunyun in the village, although Chomsuke felt a bit heavy on my shoulder.
“Seriously! I already sensed this some time ago, Yunyun is too horny! Why must I do those immoral work!”
“Bu-But, but! It is because Megumin said it in such an ambiguous manner!”
Later, we discovered that we weren’t on the same page, so the misunderstanding was cleared up.
“When I said a weak body, I meant an unhealthy body due to malnutrition! Not puberty development! Since you have become more developed recently, you start to look down on others. So rude!”
“Then, why did you let me treat you milk! I thought it was strange! Someone would actually be sexually interested in the underdeveloped Megumin!”
“Ah, you really dare! Although my body is underdeveloped, it is still very welcomed in certain circles! On the other hand, Yunyun’s body is not as developed as Arue’s, yet is not as humble as mine. It is just sitting on the fence, yet you still can look down on others. How infuriating!”
“You say sitting on the fence. You say I’m sitting on the fence?”
Yunyun, who was walking in front, suddenly turned around.
“Yes! Your body is sitting on the fence, so is your magic! Any male demand for you would also be sitting on the fence… Ah, what do you want to do!”
Teary-eyed Yunyun seized and hugged me, causing Chomsuke to fall off my shoulder.
I grabbed Chomsuke’s neck and put it back on my shoulder. To prevent falling off again, it held on tightly with its claws.
Yunyun saw our actions and stopped as well.
“…Really. Stop making me worry.”
She still grumbled unhappily.
“Oh, you are worried about me, your rival?”
“Eh? N-No…! I just thought that if you cannot find a job and use Explosion magic to vent frustrations, it will create trouble for me! Okay, let’s go!”
Proud Yunyun walked before me.
After our chat about the potion shop.
I discussed with Yunyun about the money needed for travelling and job-hunting. Eventually, she decided to accompany me to find a job.
No matter what, Yunyun was a kind-hearted, gullible kid.
But after being rejected by all the workshops in the village, I felt there was no job left…
“This is it! This shop is very busy in the afternoon, but there is only the shopkeeper working here. The work must be tiring for him, so he will surely hire you! Ever since we graduated, I feel lonely eating alone, so I often sit on this long bench to eat and watch others.”
Yunyun brought me to the village’s famous restaurant.
Yunyun and I sat on the bench not far from the restaurant, and observed the situation from a distance.
I unintentionally heard Yunyun’s sad history and decided not to ask about it.
“Well, this shop is indeed popular. Maybe I can be hired, but…”
Hearing I broke off my sentence, Yunyun tilted her head.
“Is there a problem? The shopkeeper is a friendly person. When I sat on this bench to eat my packed meal, he even kindly said to me, ‘It is cold outside, come and eat inside the shop’…”
“Your story is too depressing, so please stop. By the way, couldn’t you just sit inside the shop and order food normally? …I feel that shop may be unsuitable because… Other than magic item and potion workshops, other shops have a very low wage, right?”
“You are so picky, that’s why you cannot find a job! If you don’t get a job to earn money, you will never be able to travel! What about your dream to meet the big sister in the long robes? Faster, let’s go!”
Well… She had a point.
Yunyun took my unwilling hand and approached the shop.
“—Sorry to bother you, I would like to work here.”
We waited until there were less customers and the shopkeeper looked free.
I applied to the uncle for an interview.
By the way, Yunyun was very enthusiastic earlier, but when she met the shopkeeper whom she wasn’t close to, she withdrew. In the end, I must approach him by myself.
Yunyun originally intended to support and cheer me on, yet now she was nervously hiding behind me.
“Oh, isn’t this Hyoizaburo’s daughter… Megumin, right? Want to work at my shop? No problem, but I cannot afford a wage like that of a magic item or potion workshop though.”
“It doesn’t matter! I can wash dishes or whatever! Please hire me!”
A genius like me was working in a restaurant…
Although my intention was to do a magic-related job, this would have to do.
But I had no clue on finding that big sister in the long robes, so there was no need to rush.
It was fine to be a waitress and slowly earn money.
Since I often took care of Komekko in my parents’ absence, I was well-versed in cooking.
Compared to collecting potion ingredients, being a waitress was relaxing—
“After peeling the potatoes, wash the dishes, then take out the Onion Duck meat from the refrigerator!”
“I’m on it!”
I was a fool to think this job was so simple.
—Lunchtime, the shop’s busiest time belt.
There were only a few food stores in the Home of the Crimson Magic.
This popular shop became like a battlefield.
I juggled the duties to peel the potatoes and wash the plates.
For some reasons, even Yunyun was by my side, attentively cutting cabbages. She did not need to work, yet she was assigned a role anyway.
“Megumin, there are customers. Stop washing the dishes and take their orders!”
I was so busy that my world seemed to be spinning.
Take orders from the new customers, then back to washing the dishes…
“Bring these two set meals over! Then take the orders from the new customers!”
“Okay. I’m going over!”
I brought the set meals to the customers, then quickly took orders from the newcomers.
I was about to smile at the customers, greet them and take the orders—
“Let me see, what to order… Eh? Isn’t it Megumin!”
“Eh? Really. Megumin, you are working here?”
…The new customers were Funifura and Dodonko.
Their lines of sight shifted from the menu in their hands to me, who was wearing an apron and a waitress costume. They smiled maliciously.
What were they planning in this busy period? Hurry up and place the orders!
I didn’t know if they could sense my mood. Funifura looked at me from head to toe.
“Your dress is so cute, waitress. Cough… cough, cough…! Megumin! The genius in our class is wearing an apron and smiling at customers…! Hahaha!”
“Smiling and welcoming people! Hahaha! Our pretentious genius used to be too good to form a group during physical education lesson! Hey, give us another smile!”
“Then, customers, please place your orders…”
Both of them banged on the table as they looked at me and laughed. I could feel my arteries almost bursting on my cheek.
Crimson Magic Clansmen never backed down from a fight.
This was the clan’s unquestionable standard, but this was a restaurant. And I was currently working.
Revenge would have to wait after work.
After all, it was hard to find this job. If I dealt with them rashly, it would be too childish.
Funifura and Dodonko seemed to be bored of me not retorting. They finally started ordering.
“Hey, Megumin. What are the chef’s recommendations here?”
“Ah, me too. But I want something different from Funifura.”
The owner said they were…
“Today’s recommendations are Seasonal Fried Vegetable set meal and Onion Duck’s Onion Soup And Rice set meal…”
“Oh. I want River Fish set meal.”
“I want the daily set meal here.”
I almost rushed over to beat them up.
Endure, endure. Must endure.
After work, I would definitely seek vengeance.
Against the brocon Funifura who doted on her brother, I would make some groundless accusations about her brother.
Against cowardly Dodonko, I would pretend to be a ghost and scare her when she was alone.
I secretly made my plans.
“Messing with you is boring. Forget it, quickly serve the dish.”
“Yes, I’m hungry. Messing with Megumin won’t fill my belly.”
Both of them said as if they were bored.
Good. I managed to endure. Even I could grow and improve.
By the way, they had not paid yet.
This shop required payment first.
“River Fish set meal costs 700 eris. Daily set meal costs 600 eris.”
I announced the prices. They looked at each other, and smiled maliciously.
“Back in school, you always cheat Yunyun. Now at work, if you don’t at least give a treat, there could be retribution.”
“Good idea! Uncle, the cost of the meals will be deducted from Megumin’s pay…Ughh!”
“Hey! We were wrong! We admit our mistake! Stop casting magic!”
“You are too impetuous! Although Funifura and Dodonko were wrong, you only started working for less than an hour! To use magic in the shop, what were you thinking! It was good that nobody noticed it. If someone who knew the incantation heard you, he would know you are going to unleash Explosion magic! Then, the explosion incidents, which are being blamed on the demon king’s army, will be revealed to have been your doing!”
“I know. I’m reflecting on my mistake…”
My casting was interrupted by other customers, so I used other methods to get at them.
A nearby customer was eating mixed stew set meal— I forced the hot stew into both their mouths.
They cried and went away. Naturally, I was…
“Sacked again. It looked like there really was no job suitable for me…”
I said to Yunyun dejectedly. After all, I couldn’t even find a job that was not magic-related.
“I thought of something else! Megumin should be able to do that job.”
Yunyun suggested another location for work.
—Heavy clouds congregated in the sky. It looked like it was about to rain.
At this time, three serious-looking Crimson Magic Clansmen stood afar, holding their staffs.
“I’m going to start!”
A big sister shouted from a distance.
At the same time, the other people separated in different locations raised their hands, signaling back.
Seeing the signal, the big sister who shouted earlier set her staff on the ground…!
“Feed upon the power that is mine, bestow upon this earth a bumper harvest! Earth Shaker!”
Following the exaggerated speech, she loudly chanted the incantation.
She was probably channeling all her mana into this magic.
The big sister activated a powerful earth magic, encompassing every bit of ground in her sight within the area of effect!
The ground rose and shook, as if it was a pulsing artery.
The earth moved as the caster willed. The broad land before me was being cultivated.
…Correct. This was merely to plough the land.
They were merely shouting exaggerated speeches, expending their vast mana, and ploughing the land.
Another man took the opportunity and walked forward with a big box.
He put the box on the ground, raised his staff, and shouted seriously.
“Go berserk, atmosphere and wind! As I will it, let the raging winds dance! Tornado!”
The wind magic filled the air with quavering power, swirling up the box content and scattering them towards the ploughed land.
Yes, this was scattering seeds using wind magic.
He watched in satisfaction at the scattered seeds and nodded towards the last person.
“With my full power, let the natural order be twisted and the weather be in my hands! Control of Weather!”
Following his speech, the dark clouds in the sky started to rain.
The thing that was burning since earlier seemed to be used for preparation of the rain magic.
……Watering the planted seeds.
They were indeed engaging in normal farming activities, but it involved using powerful magic to complete by exhausting their mana.
—The food source of the entire Home of the Crimson Magic was provided by around 10 farmers.
The village contained hundreds of people.
The food for hundreds of people was being produced before my eyes in the open agricultural district.
This was a “waste”, right?
If those great adventurers saw high level Crimson Magic Clansmen using magic just to plough the land, they would find the waste of magic unbearable—
—Instead of using magic in this place, why not use it to fight the demon king’s army!
“Let’s stop here today! My mana is almost exhausted. We will join in the harvest too! Part-timers, please take care of the rest!”
The big sister who started using magic first earlier said to us.
Yunyun said the job was to harvest vegetables.
Ploughing, watering, etc could be done with magic, but harvesting required manual labor.
Yunyun and I went to help, working together with the mana-exhausted farmers.
In the field on the other side, the high quality potatoes came together to resist harvest. Yunyun was engaged in a bitter fight.
Attacked by the potatoes en masse, Yunyun fell down after being hit on the knee.
After being played by the vegetables, Yunyun was probably angry and drew her dagger. I glanced at her and went to the onion field for which I was responsible.
The vegetables were rather lively this year.
I readjusted my mood and held the onion tightly at the root. As I was about to cut it with a sickle…
—I was suddenly slapped in the face by the onion.
“Hey, you two. This is an important commodity. Don’t damage it while harvesting.”
The big sister reminded us when she saw we were about to beat up the vegetables.
—After a few hours of battling the vegetables, we finally finished the harvest in our assigned field.
……Farming was really difficult.
Need to wake up early to drive off insects and beasts. Even harvesting required combat.
I finally understood why the farmers in Home of the Crimson Magic had the highest level in the entire village.
“Good work, both of you! Well done on your first day. This is your pay. If possible, come again tomorrow!”
I took the money from the big sister and went home with Yunyun, dragging along our muddied bodies.
It was already evening.
Before I left home in the morning, I prepared breakfast and lunch for Komekko. She was probably getting hungry now.
“Uh… I don’t want to see any more potatoes for some time… Why do they keep attacking my knees? …Vegetables that are smarter than monsters are really annoying…!”
Yunyun was knocked down repeatedly by the potatoes. She wiped the mud from her cheeks with her sleeves and cried.
“But we leveled as a result, not bad… I didn’t know farming would be that difficult…”
Both Yunyun and I had leveled.
I was rather amused to have leveled from harvesting vegetables. But this merely showed that today’s vegetables were very lively and were considered tough opponents.
Today’s pay was 4,000 eris.
It was considered a high wage for a few hours of work.
…But it was still far from my target of 300,000 eris.
And harvesting work cannot be sustained for long.
I sighed helplessly.
“……Might as well sell my body……”
“What did you say!?”
I listened to Yunyun as I reflected on today’s event.
Funifura and Dodonko making trouble, being provoked by onions…
At this time, I really wanted to vent my frustrations with Explosion magic.
I considered as I walked home with Yunyun. Suddenly, I realized something.
Previously, I let Komekko dragged me home after I exhausted my mana.
I unleashed my magic in the village because I could not bring Komekko into the dangerous areas outside the village.
“My reliable Yunyun, I will like you to help me with something.”
“Re-Reliable? What’s wrong, Megumin? You were always like “I’m Number 1”. It is so rare for you to honestly praise someone else.”
So that was the impression other people had of me.
“……I will praise others occasionally too. And thank them as well. Thank you for accompanying me at work!”
“It, it’s nothing… Anyway, what is the matter?”
Yunyun blushed shyly and tilted her head.
“I hope you can keep me company for a while. Want to have a date with me over there?”
“Ahhh! Stupid, stupid! I’m so stupid! I know Megumin is an idiot, but I’m even more idiotic than her today!”
In the forest close to the village, Yunyun shouted in tears.
“Compared to a ridiculously clever person, isn’t a somewhat stupid child more lovable?”
“So noisy, shut up! Ah, seriously, Megumin, hold on tight! Or you will fall off!”
Yunyun was running in the forest.
Of course, I was laying on her back.
“Yunyun’s back is so broad. Really reliable.”
A lizard monster with blood-red scales was chasing us in rage.
It looked like it was enraged after being blown off by my Explosion magic.
“I thought that this would be slightly better than using magic in the village. I was a fool! I wish I could scold myself from several minutes ago!”
“Don’t blame yourself, Yunyun. As someone who would not refuse others, you are really attractive.”
“I’m really going to toss you down! Ah, mummy!”
—If Yunyun was around, she could carry me home.
Thereafter, Yunyun accompanied me to unleash Explosion magic. Unfortunately, the chosen location was bad, and I blew off a sleeping Fire Drake.
Therefore, we were in our current situation.
Yunyun carried me, who was totally exhausted, on her back as she cried and ran through the forest. Even with me as a burden, her pacing was steady.
She was truly an all-rounded, excellent student.
“Sometimes, I will even mistake Yunyun for a guy. You are reliable in times of crisis. Although you will grumble somewhat, you still endure my willfulness.”
“Shut up! If we are talking about masculinity, you are more like a guy than me! You have short hair and are underdeveloped… Ouch, ouch! Don’t pull my hair at this time!”
Hearing her mention of puberty development, I intentionally pulled her hair, causing her to scream.
This probably disrupted her balance, causing her to trip over a tree root and fall over.
Naturally, I was thrown off her back.
Chomsuke released its claws on my shoulder and jumped down agilely.
“Ouch, ouch… this is all Megumin’s fault!”
“What? It is because Yunyun mocked my body’s characteristics…! Ah, it is catching up, carry me fast!”
“……I really want to abandon you.”
While Yunyun was bitterly considering the matter, the angry Fire Drake arrived.
“This is bad. Yunyun, be prepared to fight here! There is only one, and the Fire Drake is the weakest among the powerful monsters near the village! As long as you avoid its fire breath, Yunyun can win this!”
“Although I may win! But for Megumin who is facing the floor, saying such things is just too weak!”
Yunyun drew her dagger and confronted the Fire Drake.
In order to observe the fight, I turned my body to face upwards with some difficulty.
After turning around, there was conveniently a tree root nearby to raise my head, so I could see the fight.
The Fire Drake is a large reptilian monster, crawling on the ground with four legs.
It looked up at Yunyun and showed its red tongue to intimidate…
No, that was not a tongue.
This monster was true to its name. It could breath fire, although the small fire this time was merely meant to intimidate an enemy.
“It did not attack immediately after catching up, so… Yunyun, the enemy is afraid of us.”
“What ‘us’? It is only me it is wary of! But the culprit who blew it away with magic is currently lying helplessly next to me, it probably won’t give up!”
Yunyun stared at the lizard and said.
At this time, I suddenly felt a weight on my belly. I looked down and saw Chomsuke curled up leisurely on my body.
“…At this time, it is still rather calm.”
“Isn’t it just like its owner!”
The Fire Drake came closer to a fighting position. Yunyun did not move her line of sight. She held her dagger in one hand and reached out with the other hand.
She was only four meters away from the Fire Drake.
The enemy could attack at any moment.
Following her incantation, the air around the lizard turned chilly.
She used intermediate magic to create a cold mist.
Snow formed on the lizard, turning its red scales to snow white.
Its thrashing tail slowly drooped.
Reptilian monsters were scared of cold.
For unknown reasons, using ice magic on reptilian monsters would slow them down. This was common knowledge among wizards.
But even though the lizard’s movements were slower in the cold, it continued to come closer.
Yunyun noticed this and was preparing another magic to finish it off… Suddenly, two reinforcements appeared behind that lizard.
“Oh, it realized it cannot win, so it summoned help. We have me, Yunyun, and Chomsuke on our side. So we are evenly matched in terms of numbers… It looks like there is no need for me to act. Yunyun, finish them off.”
“Stop spouting nonsense while lying on the floor! Run away! I could still deal with one, but fighting three monsters and protecting the helpless Megumin is really beyond me…! Freeze Gust! Freeze Gust! …Megumin, we escape now! While they were slowed down, I could escape even with Megumin on my back!”
After using magic on the two newcomers, Yunyun backed off, grabbed my arm, and supported me with her shoulder.
Chomsuke used its claws to hold tightly to avoid being abandoned. As Yunyun put me on her back…
And was about to run away, the lizard breathed a large burst of flame!
“Hot! Hot, hot, hot! Yunyun, it’s too hot! Us-Use ice magic! Use ice magic on me! Is my back on fire!”
“It-It’s fine! Just the edge of your robe is burning! We are running away!”
Yunyun carried me and sprinted off. Realizing our intentions, the lizards breathed fire again.
But the flame did not reach Yunyun. My back on the other hand…
“Ahah! Yunyun, my back, my back!”
“Don’t move about! I almost fell! A bit further and it will be fine!”
Yunyun adjusted her grip on me and said without looking back.
“Yunyun! They’re coming, more reinforcements! This is really bad. Run!”
“I know! Don’t grab so tightly, it is hard to run like this! Ah, seriously! I won’t accompany you to do such things ever again!”
Yunyun and I escaped the lizards and arrived at the village. The villagers must have heard the sound of Explosion magic, so there was a slight disturbance.
It looked like even the forest was not far enough from the village.
“Oh! Megumin, Yunyun, are you okay? Why do you look so pathetic? What happened?”
As a patrol of the so-called self-defense force, Buzucoily discovered our charred appearances.
My school uniform, which I usually used as personal clothes, was badly burnt by the lizards.
What do I do now? I only have this set of clothes…
Yunyun, who was still carrying me, did not know how to explain.
I came down from her back, using her shoulder for support.
“We were training our levels in the forest and suddenly encountered the legendary Explosion Demon.”
Buzucoily shouted in surprise.
“Why is Yunyun surprised so well!?”
Yunyun, who also exclaimed with Buzucoily, hurriedly shook her head.
“That Explosion Demon is as the legends say. It must be a cadre of the demon king’s army. Yunyun and I fought it valiantly, but it still managed to escape, so we came back.”
“What! …Ah, so Megumin exhausted her mana, losing strength in her limbs! …Even the genius with vast mana, Megumin, became like this. The enemy must be quite powerful!”
“That’s right. That… must be a demon! A female demon with a sexy body and horns!”
“You are lying through your teeth…!”
Yunyun whispered into my ears as I leaned on her shoulder.
This way, no matter how many Explosion magic were used in the future, they would all be blamed on the female demon.
My only decent clothes were ruined. This appearance looked as if I was in a difficult battle, making what I said more credible.
“It’s good that both of you came back alive then. Leave the rest to us. Go home and rest.”
“Yes… Ah, if you see some frost-covered Fire Drakes in the forests, please kill them quickly. They are very aggressive and would be trouble if left unchecked!”
“Ah, is it… okay, I’ll get rid of them if they are encountered.”
I entrusted my revenge for my ruined school uniform to Buzucoily and reminded him to be careful.
“That Explosion Demon is strong, please be careful.”
—Although this character did not even exist.
“Ah, I know… By the way, it should be Detonation Demon, not Explosion Demon, right? The name Explosion Demon sounds as if it could use Explosion magic.”
“Uh, uh… During the fight earlier, the opponent used Explosion magic in the end…!”
Hearing my explanation, Buzucoily laughed aloud.
“Explosion magic? Hahaha. That fellow is nuts! A cadre of the demon king’s army learned this useless magic! I heard some immortal liches or demons may learn Explosion magic for fun since they got too many skill points… Even so, she wouldn’t use Explosion magic!”
I patronized Buzucoily as I tried to control my mouth from twitching. I said to Yunyun, who was suppressing her laughter.
“Let’s go quickly, Yunyun! Komekko is starving at home!”
I urged Yunyun to leave quickly.
“Sigh. I’m so tired today… You are banned from using Explosion magic for a while.”
“…How long is ‘for a while’? Until the day after tomorrow?”
“‘For a while’ means ‘for a while’! What day after tomorrow! That’s too soon!”
“That is very difficult for me. If I don’t use Explosion magic for one day, I will die…”
“If you mess around again, I will strangle you!”
—With Yunyun’s support, I finally arrived at my home. I sat by the door as I listened to her lectures.
Mana exhaustion. I felt like not moving at all for the rest of the day.
Yunyun probably wanted to go home early too, so she didn’t grumble anymore.
Then, she bashfully played with her fingers and whispered.
“Again, Megumin… Then, tomorrow…”
“Yes. Come along with me for work. I cannot harvest those vegetables by myself.”
Yunyun smiled, nodded in satisfaction, and went home.
She was so easy to deal with. I was getting more and more worried about Yunyun’s future.
I sat by the door and shouted into the house.
“Komekko! Sis is home!”
Komekko heard and ran over quickly.
“NEET Sis is back! Make food quickly!”
“Komekko, sis is not a NEET anymore. I worked today, so I am really tired. My body is dirty. I should take a bath first. Can you boil some water for me?”
Komekko ran to boil water. This kid is too energetic.
The bath utilized mana to start the fire.
It was considered a high quality magic item elsewhere, but it was just a common household item in this village.
It requires a fair amount of mana, but my sister could already use it easily.
Perhaps she possessed even more talent than me.
I pondered as I sloppily lay down in the corridor. Chomsuke moved from its fixed position on my shoulder down to my belly.
Recently, it was getting more and more impolite.
…I ruffled its head. At this time,
“Sorry for the bother at this time of the night— Is anyone there?”
Someone knocked on the door. A feminine voice said from beyond the door.
I couldn’t recognize this voice.
“The door is open. Please come in.”
The door opened slowly.
I sat up and looked at the person who spoke.
She was about 20 years old.
A red haired beauty was covered in dirt as if she had been travelling for a long time. She was dressed like an adventurer, specifically a wizard.
This woman glanced at me, then slowly lowered her gaze—
When she saw Chomsuke on my belly, she suddenly knelt on the floor.
She lowered her head as her falling hair obscured her expression.
Her face was covered by her hair, so I did not know what expression she was making.
She seemed very excited. Her voice trembled softly.
“After a long journey, I have finally found you! Great master!”
INTERLUDE: SCENE 1
—Lady Aqua, I Would Not Let Him Escape!
Alcanretia, the City of Water and Hot Springs.
In this place where nobody except Axis Cultists would come close—
In the city center stood a great cathedral.
In this place where nobody except Axis Cultists would come close—
“May I help you? Do you wish to join Axis Cult? Or just here for a chat? You look quite handsome, so I will permit you give me a treat. But don’t think I’m a frivolous woman, it’s just a treat, okay?”
“No, I’m not here for a chat. I’m here to find a healer to join my party. Our goal is to defeat the demon king.”
The youth said something really strange.
“What a fresh way to strike a conversation. There’s a nice café nearby, let’s go there to drink and chat. Ah, my name is Cecily, the beautiful priest of Axis Cult.”
“Eh. Hm, Miss Cecily? I said I wasn’t here to chat…”
Then, I noticed there was something hanging by the waist of this cool youth.
“Oh. Is that a magic sword hanging by your waist? …To possess a magic sword. Are you a powerful adventurer? You should quite rich then… I love grass jelly slime. It’s sticky, mushy, and soft, so delicious.”
“Uh, no… I’m here to look for a companion…”
“By the way, I like handsome guys who are younger than me. Of course, pretty girls are fine too! A handsome young man with a magic sword like you should rate even higher!”
“…No, sorry, uh, sorry for bothering you…!? Mi-Miss Cecily!? Can you take your hands off me?”
I did not understand why the magic sword guy wanted to run away.
“Just call me Sister Cecily would do!”
“Sorry, I have to go… Ce-Miss Cecily! Please let go of me. I will give you money to buy grass jelly slime!”
He said and tried to remove my hand from his cloak with some difficulty.
“I won’t let my handsome magic swordsman escape this easily! After ordering all the grass jelly slime in bulk two days ago, I’m bankrupt! But this couldn’t be helped, since it was a limited edition wind grape flavor! Although I love grass jelly slime, eating it daily is still unbearable! I want to eat some solid food! As a priestess of the cathedral, I get a monthly salary, but this also means I am not qualified to receive the charity of the church to the poor!”
“I know! I know! So stop pulling on my belt! My pants will drop! Really will drop…!”
The youth hurriedly grabbed hold of my hands as I held on to his belt to prevent him from escaping.
But he did not run away or remove my hands. His resistance was weak.
“Eheh. You say that, but your body is honest to what it wants! Why aren’t you resisting!?”
“Be-Because a powerful diviner in Home of the Crimson Magic once told me, ‘You will meet a priest from Axis Cult, who will become an important person to the fate of the world. You must protect this person at all costs.’ Otherwise, I would have run away long ago!”
“…A diviner in Home of the Crimson Magic said so? You will meet a pretty priestess who will become important to you? Become someone you must protect at all costs?”
“No, how do I say this, the details are a bit different… The divination did not mention ‘pretty’ and it wasn’t someone ‘important to me’…”
I held onto his hand with both hands.
I would not let you escape.
“Uh, Miss Cecily, are you listening? She only said ‘An Axis Cult priest that I will meet’, it does not necessarily mean it is you…”
“Ah, Lady Aqua! You have given me with this rich, handsome guy just as I am low on cash! I’m so blessed! I will let him feed and take care of me!”
The youth dislodged my hands and ran away. I pursued with all my might.
—Lady Aqua, I would not let him escape!