A Serious Error in Chihaya-chan’s Reputation – Volume 1 – Chapter 3

𝐅𝐢𝐫𝐬𝐭 𝐉𝐨𝐛

𝐂𝐡𝐚𝐩𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝟑: 𝐅𝐢𝐫𝐬𝐭 𝐉𝐨𝐛

“S, Spacious. . . . . .”

Upon entering the room of the apartment rented out for new actors, Chihaya, a newcomer actor, was taken aback by its unexpectedly spacious layout.

The monthly rent was $550. While she had heard that it was made affordable due to government subsidies, the room was, indeed, very spacious.

The kitchen was equipped with three burners. It was a privileged place, complete with a refrigerator and fully equipped amenities. The living room boasted ample space, and a separate bedroom was also present.

Above all, what stood out was the presence of a basement. The basement, with dimensions equivalent to the combined size of the ground floor’s kitchen and living room, had been designed as an actor’s room, complete with soundproofing. Notably, the basement provided access to the internet through underground cables and was a dedicated space for controlling Actanoids from the new world.

Since controlling an Actanoid required physical movement, the room was equipped with air conditioning. Additionally, a sofa bed was available, allowing for a rest while the Actanoid remained parked in the new world.

The refrigerator contained bottles of water, tea, and sports drinks. A letter accompanied the drinks, reading, 『Please be cautious about heatstroke and dehydration. This is a complimentary service.』

The perfection of the setup was almost unsettling.

Chihaya, much like a hamster placed in a new cage, explored the rented house, inspecting its facilities, before eventually settling onto the sofa bed in the basement.

“Phew. . . . . . Solo karaoke would be perfect here.”

As she surveyed the spacious basement, she expressed an exaggerated sentiment and then shifted her attention to her smartphone’s screen.

She launched an application named Actor’s Quest.

Actor’s Quest functioned as a request bulletin board, where government entities, companies, and individuals posted tasks for actors like Chihaya to take on.

Chihaya opened her own account and perused the information page. Name, age, gender, and other personal details were initially concealed.

The account name appeared to be defaulting to “Actor U114.” Chihaya guessed that the numbers might serve as registration identifiers for Actors, as the alphanumeric characters seemed randomly assigned.

Already, a nomination request had been assigned to her account.

“Targeting newcomers, a government request. . . . . .?”

During the orientation, she had learned that the government often assigned tasks to newcomers as a way to support their career development.

The task involved transporting materials. Specifically, it entailed accompanying a group of four senior actors to deliver materials to “Takakura’s Temporary Garage” in the new world.

“A garage where Actanoids can be securely parked in a prepared environment? Perhaps for one-way transportation?”

The journey would take approximately half a day. The materials were to be transported within an armored vehicle, and the Actors would be able to operate an All-Rounder Actanoid provided by the government.

Given Chihaya’s status as a new Actor, the government would provide a comprehensive explanation, alleviating the need for excessive apprehension.

Chihaya took a deep breath and accepted the request.

“A, Alright, I’ve accepted it. . . . . .”

The task was already designated as a team effort.

“R, Right. The voice changer needs to be activated.”

Although communication could be conducted via text chat, voice communication was commonly used in emergencies. Concealing her gender in her account details would lose its purpose if her voice revealed it.

She powered up her computer and initiated the installation of various software, including a voice changer.

“Let’s see, a compilation of useful apps to have. . . . . .”

A variety of applications were available online, tailored for actors’ needs.

Among the popular ones were encyclopedic apps capable of identifying the new world’s flora and fauna from images or videos, as well as a government-developed resource search app available for free.

Although apps like “Roochin” for repetitive actions were available, they couldn’t be installed on the All-Rounder due to its limited processing power.

Nonetheless, Chihaya proceeded to install the encyclopedia app and the resource search app on her computer. These apps functioned adequately on her home computer despite some lag.

“A shooting control app? . . . . . . For pest control? Oh, that’s also a thing.”

As a general rule, creatures in the new world tended to be sizable.

Using the recently installed encyclopedia app, Chihaya studied the creatures of the new world, preparing herself for the upcoming task.

And three days later, Chihaya connected to the rental All-Rounder ten minutes before the start time to participate in her first mission.

Over these three days, she repeatedly trained by connecting to the training All-Rounder in the New World. This training encompassed not only movement but also fundamental handling and shooting exercises involving firearms.

Thanks to some posture control by the All-Rounder, the gun’s recoil didn’t pose a significant concern.

“Nice to meet you.”

“You’re the newcomer, right? Don’t overexert yourself.”

“Even if the Actanoid gets damaged, the New World Resources Agency will provide compensation, so you don’t need to worry too much.”

“Let’s get moving then.”

The four-member Actor team greeted the new recruit, Chihaya, with a calm and amicable atmosphere, perhaps to alleviate her anxiety.

Chihaya nodded from the Actanoid and began running behind the armored car.

Apparently, the armored car was being driven by an employee of the New World Resources Agency named Otsuka, using an Actanoid.

The road was so rugged that even tree stumps remained untouched, and the armored car rumbled along, likely at a speed of about forty kilometers per hour.

“. . . . . .I can catch up easily.”

Merely by stepping on the pressure-sensitive mat and shifting her weight, the monitor slightly quivered, and the All-Rounder started running. The All-Rounder’s top speed is said to range from eighty to one hundred kilometers per hour, so this should be a breeze.

The view on the monitor bobbed up and down due to its humanoid nature, but thanks to consistent height adjustments by the neck, there was no motion sickness. Suppressing the whimsical thought of a chicken or pigeon’s head, Chihaya focused on the map.

The route to 『Takakura’s Temporary Garage』 would be circuitous due to the road conditions, but the signal appeared to be stable.

Anticipating an easy assignment suitable for beginners, Chihaya was optimistically prepared, only to be plunged into despair shortly before reaching her destination.

“It’s in ruins.”

Where 『Takakura’s Temporary Garage』 was expected to be, a prefab hut enclosed by a fence had collapsed. The fence was also knocked down here and there, and Actanoids with missing limbs were strewn about.

While Otsuka, who was driving the armored car, was questioning the defense Actors, the four-member Actor team began guarding the surrounding woods with their assault rifle named 『Breakthrough』.

Chihaya hastily directed her All-Rounder to face the armored car and aimed her gun backward.

“Keep watch on the surroundings.”

“How’s the search progressing?”

“Nothing in sight.”

“Damn it, and I still have a loan on this.”

As the group grumbled, one of the staff members raised their voice.

“I’ve established contact with an Actor. They were assaulted by a pack of yenver. Conventional firearms had no effect. Be cautious――.”

A dull sound reverberated from the monitor, causing Chihaya’s body to shudder.

Turning her gaze in the direction of the sound, she spotted a massive tiger-patterned fierce beast, yenver, with unusually elongated whisker-like sensors, toppling the armored car.

“. . . . . .What?”

The yenver that burst forth from the forest unbalanced an unresponsive Actanoid and tipped over the armored car. Chihaya understood that much, but the suddenness of it all caught her off guard.

Nevertheless, instinctively pointing her gun was a commendable reaction.

“――Fire!”

One of the four Actors shouted.

Chihaya snapped back to reality and pulled the trigger. The assault rifle gripped by her All-Rounder sprayed bullets, inflicting wounds from the yenver’s neck to its chest at close range.

Regardless of how tough the scales were, at this proximity, there was no evading the bullets.

Still, the yenver that advanced a few steps toward Chihaya’s All-Rounder collapsed beside the armored car, spewing crimson blood.

Just as she let out a sigh of relief, both Otsuka and an Actor screamed simultaneously.

“Three yenvers!”

“Goodness, what a debt!”

With the death cry of the Actor stained with his own household, the Actanoid danced through the air.

It seemed to have been knocked away by another yenver. The remaining yenver bit the Actanoid’s arm in mid-air and tore it off. Politely, it was trampling on the fallen Actanoid.

Clearly, this wasn’t a predatory behavior. It was a movement and fierceness that seemed to eliminate the enemy that had entered the territory.

The two yenvers glanced at their fallen comrade covered in blood and let out a grating growl that was akin to scratching a blackboard.

Chihaya, who was maintaining distance from the yenvers, anticipating a delay in response, received a voice chat from the reduced group of four, which was now down to only two remaining mechs.

“Yenvers have a tendency to chase after those who flee. Please lure it in the opposite direction of the destination.”

Chihaya’s eyes widened, and she doubted her ears, leaving her mouth half-open.

However, it seemed that only Chihaya was shocked to be boldly instructed to use the rookie as a decoy.

“That’s right. We’ll receive a subsidy from the government, and the location is just right.”

Even Otsuka, an employee of the New World Resources Agency, concurred with the decoy strategy.

It was rational, but it was Chihaya’s first request. Failure was not an option. It would impact her account’s rating.

Even thinking that far, Chihaya couldn’t decline.

If she possessed the strength to refuse here, she wouldn’t have struggled with job hunting in the first place.

“Lure it as far away as possible. It’s meaningless if the yenvers returns before we reinforce the garage’s defenses.”

“The request pertains to the transportation of supplies. Whether the Actanoid sustains damage or not is not an evaluation criterion, so rest assured. We’ll also use our connections to assist.”

“Yes. . . . . .”

Chihaya accepted the role of bait, pulled the trigger of the assault rifle, and began running back the way she had come, capturing the yenver’s attention.

Checking the two yenvers chasing her through the rear camera, Chihaya disconnected from the voice chat.

“Being a bait, whyyyy. . . . . .”

Half crying, and amidst a thrilling chase filled with the sound of yenver growls and surrounding footsteps, Chihaya located the fallen container and exploded into pieces along with her mech.


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