A Serious Error in Chihaya-chan’s Reputation – Volume 1 – Chapter 20

𝐀𝐧 𝐔𝐧𝐰𝐚𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐝 𝐈𝐧𝐯𝐢𝐭𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧

𝐂𝐡𝐚𝐩𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝟐𝟎: 𝐀𝐧 𝐔𝐧𝐰𝐚𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐝 𝐈𝐧𝐯𝐢𝐭𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧

If more non-combat requests are handled, the request board algorithm can be cleaned up faster.

With that thought in mind, Chihaya looked for any requests to go to the Wagawa upstream mountain range and came across a particular one.

It was a request from Unison Human-Machine Technology, for the 『Transportation and delivery of compressed hydrogen cylinders for use in hydrogen engines』.

Apparently, they want to deliver compressed hydrogen cylinders to operate construction machinery utilizing the rare metal deposits in the Wagawa upstream mountain range.

Considering the previous attack, a simple position has been created near the deposit, and an Actanoid is stationed for security. Delivering the compressed hydrogen cylinder to that Actanoid would complete the request.

The compressed hydrogen cylinder weighs around 60 kilograms. It’s a weight that can be transported by an Actanoid.

Moreover, it seems to be a standing request, probably being cautious of an attack. By not knowing when the Actanoid carrying the compressed hydrogen cylinder will arrive, they intend to tire out those who might be ambushing.

“. . . . . .No, I don’t want to be attacked.”

The reward is $2,791. And they seem to cover some of the expenses as well.

Having the expenses covered is significant. If they can cover the costs for batteries and ammunition, there’s a high chance of avoiding a deficit.

Honestly, it’s a lucrative request.

That’s why Chihaya is not the only Actor to take this request.

Chihaya looks at the current wear rate for this request. The wear rate is just over twelve percent. It seems to have been accepted eight times and destroyed once. The record appears to be due to a fern-legged scorpion, and there have been no attacks by bandit Actors.

With this, it seems good to accept it.

Even with these conditions, it’s the kind of case that the usual Chihaya would pass over as too risky.

But now the circumstances are slightly different. She wanted to lower the priority of combat requests on the bulletin board at all costs.

As the delivery of materials is a common request, proper execution could effectively dilute the priority of combat.

“A, Alright, let’s try it. . . . . .”

The representative of 『Hachigi Technology』, Hachigi, was panicking after having multiple Actanoids destroyed one after another.

Hachigi Technology, originally classified as a small-to-medium-sized enterprise, was facing financial difficulties due to the establishment of factories in the New World Development Zone.

On top of that, their Actanoids in the New World were being heavily damaged and captured one after another. It was affecting their operations at a critical level.

Wearing an unfamiliar suit, Hachigi got out of a taxi.

A massive building stood before him, a privately-owned building standing on a prime location near the New World Development Zone’s city hall.

He swallowed hard, trying to ease his throat, and Hachigi entered the building.

“I have an appointment with Congressman Kakuhara Tameyuki.”

Upon informing the receptionist of his purpose, the woman at the desk smiled and handed him a card.

The owner of this building, Kakuhara Tameyuki, is the representative of one of the forces in the New World Development Zone, known as the Kakuhara Group.

The Kakuhara Group is led by Kakuhara Tameyuki and consists of retired bureaucrats, including the New World Resources Agency, practitioners, and small-to-medium-sized companies like Hachigi Technology.

In other words, Kakuhara Tameyuki was like a group chairman to Hachigi, someone above the clouds.

Kakuhara Tameyuki’s room was in one corner of a vast floor on the seventh floor of the building. Hachigi knocked on the door and called out.

“This is Hachigi, the representative of Hachigi Technology.”

“Ah, it’s you. Come in, please.”

The voice that encouraged him to enter had a gentle tone, yet it had a pressure that felt somewhat overpowering.

When Hachigi entered the room, there were two people inside.

Sitting in a fine leather chair and gazing at a computer screen was Kakuhara Tameyuki. A slender man with sharp eyes, wearing thin-framed glasses. On the screen, which was partially visible, a crossword puzzle was displayed, half-filled.

“Do you know this? It’s a proverb, something about something shining.”

Kakuhara pointed to part of the screen and asked the man beside him.

A man with broad shoulders and a chubby physique, smirking with a sneer as he glanced at Hachigi.

Kakuhara Tameyuki’s bodyguard, Banba Saita.

Banba shrugged his shoulders and pointed at Hachigi with his chin.

“I’m not sure. Why don’t you ask over there?”

“Hachigi, do you know?”

Finally, Kakuhara looked at Hachigi.

An annoying question, Hachigi thought, suppressing his inner resentment.

“. . . . . .Even a Buddha shines with money.”

“Yes, that’s right. You’re quite learned, aren’t you?”

Pretending to be impressed, Kakuhara glared at Hachigi.

“There are so many proverbs about money. It must be important in life, society, and history. By the way, what’s the meaning?”

“The blessings of Amida Buddha vary depending on the money.”

“Banba, did you learn something?”

When Kakuhara called out, Banba smirked and nodded.

“Yeah.”

“Now, Hachigi, what’s your business?”

Although he knew, Kakuhara asked expressionlessly.

Hachigi couldn’t help but ask for support.

“I request additional Actanoids to eliminate the hostile Actor.”

The goal of his shameful visit to Kakuhara was to eliminate the Actor known as Bomber, who had destroyed Hachigi Technology’s Actanoids in succession.

Kakuhara looked at Hachigi with a dismayed expression.

“Hachigi, even if you say reinforcement, Actanoids are expensive. Giving you command, with your losing streak?”

He knew what Kakuhara was saying. Against an All-Rounder, often ridiculed as an antique and showing signs of wear, Hachigi Technology had suffered defeat after defeat.

The Berlette, The Leaf Sprinter and the Conductor. All were excellent mechs.

But he couldn’t back down now.

“He’s abnormal! A man who would blow up the kukumerka gorve without hesitation, who doesn’t choose means to win. If we don’t stop him now. . . . . .”

As Hachigi trailed off, Kakuhara urged him coldly.

“If you don’t stop him now?”

“. . . . . .He will become a threat to us.”

Kakuhara snorted dismissively and turned back to his computer screen.

“You’re using a big subject. A threat to you, right? Not a threat to us. You’ve lost the last of your Actanoids and the kukumerka grove. You’re no longer of use.”

With that, he glanced sidelong at Hachigi.

“The last one was from the Order series, wasn’t it? I’ll buy it at a fair price. It should cover your employee severance and moving costs, right?”

“Wait. We still have a bargaining chip. I could expose our secret trade with that country, you know?”

Cutting his desperation card, Kakuhara looked at Hachigi as if he were a complete fool.

“Secret trade? Exporting New World fauna and Actanoid technology is a violation of international treaties. Was Hachigi Technology involved in such acts? Very serious. Shall I call the police?”

Implying that he was ready to cut them(him) off, Hachigi flinched.

He had guessed from the crossword puzzle conversation, but preparations were probably already made to cut off Hachigi Technology.

Knowing that even his last-ditch card was useless, Hachigi still persisted.

“Wait! He’s a bloodthirsty beast! After us, he’ll――”

“――Don’t underestimate.”

Interrupted by Banba from the side, Hachigi closed his mouth.

Kakuhara, no longer interested, was typing answers into his crossword puzzle.

The negotiation had failed.

“… Excuse me.”

Leaving the room, Hachigi clenched his teeth and pulled out his smartphone.

Looking at his enemy, Bomber’s account, Hachigi made up his mind.

“A public order? You’re inviting me, Bomber. . . . . .The time for playing with fireworks is over.”


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