Chapter 35: Bounty Hunters on the Fifth Layer│Read translated stories and daily updates at: Awebstories.com
To reach the fifth layer, they descended a deep, long, and dark staircase.
The staircase was so long that one wondered if there was another layer beneath it.
They naturally exhaled a sigh of relief when they saw the light of the exit.
The fifth layer was a deserted town.
A deserted castle town with nothing but sand. The dust obscures the distant towering castle.
The streets, with their ochre tiles and red roofs, harken back to the town’s glory days.
However, numerous locations have been destroyed.
There are both old and new traces of destruction. The more recent ones could have been damaged in battles between adventurers and monsters.
The sky is a yellowish earth color.
There are currently no signs of monsters or other creatures.
However, there is still a sense that people have come and gone in the last few days.
“This layer is teeming with medium-sized monsters. Let us proceed with caution.”
As they carefully follow the thick paths between the buildings, Dee draws a map.
“Hmm… I’d like to see it from a higher perspective—let’s go up there.”
Dee pointed to the tallest structure in the area. A tower rises above it, providing a good vantage point.
They walk into the building and up the stairs.
The inside of the building was undamaged and did not appear to be in danger of collapsing anytime soon. There were traces of human habitation scattered about, such as rotting furniture and fabrics.
Perhaps there were people who lived in the dungeon.
If that was the case, they were either adventurers who had lost their way home or criminals who couldn’t go out into the sun.
“It’s a little creepy—it’s as if monsters and ghosts could burst through the door at any moment…”
However, contrary to popular belief, no monsters appear. They make it to the top of the tower without incident.
They could clearly see the terrain from the square rooftop.
Dee quickly sketches a map.
“What is that?”
Lysette notices a group of humanoids moving in the distance while on the lookout for them.
They might be humanoid monsters, but from what she can tell, they’re just regular adventurers.
Except there are quite a few of them.
“That’s quite a big party. The party is supposed to be for up to only six people…”
“There are 18 of them to be seen. Is that why there are no monsters? Because they killed them?”
“That is a possibility—monsters tend to gather in large groups.”
A large number of people seem to be right or wrong.
—The more people there are, the more stable the quest, but is that why there is a limit?
“Perhaps it’s some sort of guild survey team or something?”
“Or maybe they’re working together because they share a common interest within the Dungeon…”
“I’ve got a bad feeling about this. Let’s not get involved.”
Then Leonhardt, who was about to leave the rooftop before they could find him, gasped.
A sharp pull on her arm sends Lysette tumbling backward, and a blade like a throwing knife pierces the spot where Lysette had been.
She feels a chill and looks up to see a small, black-clad Lilliput on the roof opposite.
“She’s there! It’s the lady with the ten million gold gold bounty!”
He screams loudly at Lysette.
In the next moment, several spells fly from below. fire arrows, ice arrows, and thunderbolts.
These spells are blocked by Leonhardt’s magical barrier.
The Lilliput closes the gap immediately, but Leonhardt uses his shield to push him back and bring him down.
“Run as fast as you can! That way!”
Dee leads the way out of the scene. They leap from a first-floor window, run across the roof into another house, exit, and wind their way through a narrow alley to a private residence.
Lysette immediately puts up a barrier when they enter a room with a clear exit.
This prevents anyone except her friends from entering or leaving the house and silences the sounds. Outside sounds are permitted to pass through.
—I never imagined that the barrier meant to protect us from monsters would be useful in this way.
“For the time being, we’ve shaken them off… It’s a good thing there are so many hiding places.”
Leonhardt lets out a sigh.
Now that she’s safe for the moment, Lysette takes a deep breath to catch her breath.
“This is the first time I’ve had a bounty placed on my head…”
“You know, it’s not normal…”
“I don’t think it’s that much…”
“Aren’t you arrogant?! How much money do you think you’ve been spending? “
Dee sat stupefiedly on the doorstep.
Lysette was sitting on the wall step as well.
Leonhardt stood there, warily looking at the other side of the wall and inside the room.
“What are you going to do now? Maybe you’re on the guild’s official bounty list, or maybe some rich guy has a bounty on your head.”
There are a lot of people who want Lysette’s head.
They are not monsters, but rather human beings. They use magic and flying weapons. They might set traps. They will collaborate to bring you down.
“Did you break any damn rules in the dungeon territory, like murder or assault?”
“A 10 million gold bounty on a single person is unusual… Are you sure you have no idea?”
Lysette thinks again, but she still has no idea.
“Perhaps you fed monster food to someone who you didn’t like…”
“Eh?! That’s not true! You were happy to eat it. Right, Leon?”
“At least, as far as I know.”
Leonhardt is taken aback, but he responds positively.
“The first person I served monster food to was Leon. And since then, I’ve been with Leon.”
Lysette has been living the Dungeon life since her second visit to the Dungeon.
She has been living in the peace and quiet of the first level before going back out to check on the second level, where she met Leonhardt and came down here with the shared goal of defeating a dragon.
“Is that right? So you can say with certainty that Lysette has never forced anyone to eat anything they didn’t want to and has never harmed anyone?”
Dee had an indescribable appearance.
Lysette thinks with her hand over her mouth. She considers who might have placed a bounty on her head.
“Perhaps the church thought I was rebellious because I didn’t pay the sacred coins I was supposed to pay to the church?”
“How come you didn’t pay?”
“I’ve spent almost all of my time in Norun in the Dungeon… In the first place, I wasn’t even told how much I had to pay…
The first priest she met could have explained when Lysette arrived in Norun, but she went straight to the dungeon without hearing much of what was said. As a result, the truth is unknown.
Leonhardt thinks, a mysterious expression on his face.
“… If it wasn’t intentional, I’d think it would go away if I turned myself in and paid the bounty, but it’s strange to put a bounty on someone’s head simply because they’re late paying.”
Dee simply nodded.
“I, too, had never heard of it. When sinners are thrown into dungeon territory, it’s already like a death sentence. The church isn’t even interested in collecting the fine. That is a massive shortfall.”
If that’s the case, Lysette’s guess is almost certainly incorrect.
So, who placed the bounty on Lysette’s head, and why?
Meldiana became a saint when she stole Lysette’s sacred mark. Is she now trying to take something else from her?
That’s all she could come up with.
—But that’s impossible.
Meldiana seemed satisfied with sending Lysette to the dungeon. It’s difficult to believe she’d then try to kill her again with a bounty on her head.
“Hey, how much is the fine?”
“Fifty million gold coins.”
“F-Fifty million gold coins?! What the hell!”
Dee, who had been sitting, gets up.
Leonhardt is also surprised, and for the first time, Lysette realizes how bizarre the amount is.