NBAA Vol. 3 Chapter 3 Part 4
Some ten minutes had passed before Reito had finally discovered the staircase leading to the basement storage.
“There are two guards. I should have brought an anesthesia gun with me.”
『That weapon doesn’t exist. You will need to divert their attention somehow. A contracted monster should be passing in just a little bit. Let’s watch how they react.』
Reito waited in the shadows of a column in the hallway.
He turned his sights toward the guards. Both of them weren’t in the usual soldier outfit but donned higher-quality armor and weapons.
While he was watching the two soldiers, some contracted monsters, a group of orcs, appeared.
The orcs scratched their heads while they took rounds through the hallway.
“Tsk… These pigs! They stink every time they pass by!”
“Suck it up! It’s our job!”
The two guards scrunched their faces at the rancid smell the orcs gave off.
Reito carefully hid in the shadow of the column as he used an ice clot spell to produce a small ice cube from his fingertip. He tapped the second-to-last orc’s head with it.
The last orc turned around in anger, pushing another orc in anger!
“What’s going on!?”
The guards were shaken as the orcs suddenly broke out into a riot. Reito continued hitting the orcs with the ice, and it turned into an all-out brawl.
The guards tried to stop their movements.
“What’s gotten into them!?”
“It’s an all-out riot!! Where’s the monster controller that’s supposed to be in charge of them!!”
Taking advantage of that opening, Reito leaped onto the ceiling and dived toward the top landing of the stairs.
“What I’ll do when I get back… I guess I’ll find out then.”
Reito used “Soundless Walk” as he descended the stairs. He ended up at a door that was glimmering like a mirror.
At one glance, Reito could tell that the material was magical metal.
『This is bad… The door appears to be made of a material highly resistant to magic. You won’t be able to blast through it using magic.』
『If it’s magic metal… I can’t even use “shape change” on it. Maybe I could change the shape of something that’s not the door itself.』
『That would take too much time. There’s not much you can do about it… Perhaps it’s about time you welcomed a new evolution.』
『What? I don’t have a Megastone!』
『Why are you talking about Pokemon out of nowhere? Also, that’s a little outdated reference… You have some skill points that have built up. If you use that, you should be able to strengthen your abilities.』
『You can strengthen your alchemy skills. I’m going to upgrade your “Metal Transmutation” skill.』
Reito followed Airis’s advice and opened his Status Screen.
『Raise the upper limit of the alchemy skill. If you use your skill points, you can increase the max score by 10 points.』
Reito looked at the Status Screen, following Airis’s instructions.
After expending his skill points, the upper limits of his “Metal Transmutation,” “Shape Change,” and “Matter Reinforcement” skills were increased.
He expended 15 skill points. Each of the skills required five skill points.
<Status Updated. The previous skill limit has been released.>
“Ho, that surprised me. I thought you were saying some weird thing in my head.”
『Why would I do that? I’m not the system voice.』
『I feel like you’re talking like a regular person nowadays.』
『 I’ve managed to capture your wavelength. How about it? Are there any changes to your status screen?』
“Hmm… What’s this?”
When he rechecked his alchemy stats, the skills that had previously had a limit of five points were now at 10 points. It was a little surreal.
Metal Transmutation – Change an object into another type of metal. [Skill Level – 10 (Max Score)]
Matter Reinforcement – Increase the durability of an object. [Skill Level – 10 (Max Score)]
Shape Change – Change the shape of an object. [Skill Level – 10 (Max Score)]
Even though he had just updated them, they were already maxed out at 10. He asked Airis, “They’re already at the max point level…”
『Because you had already maxed out the skill before the Skill limit had been raised. If you were to use a video game metaphor, it’s like the experience points you gain for reaching the highest level. They carry over.』
“I see, and then what happens?”
『You should have a notification. Please check.』
He followed AIris’s instructions, and a sentence was displayed:
<You can evolve your skills that have reached the max skill level. Will you evolve them?>
“What the hell is this?”
『 You’ve reached the limit, so you can evolve the skill. If you evolve the skill, the Skill Level will be reset.』
Reito evolved the skills, no holds back. The alchemy skills changed as follows:
Matter Transmutation – Change any matter into another type of matter.
Super Matter Reinforcement – Increase the durability of an object to a greater extent.
High-Speed Shape Change – Change the shape of an object instantly.
Reito looked at the “Matter Transmutation” skill and asked Airis, “Will this Matter Transmutation skill help me to…”
『It works just like you’d think. You could use it on metal that before it was useless against. In other words, you can use it on magical metal, something “Metal Transmutation” was incapable of.』
“That’s great! So, can I use it on this door?”
『 Let’s find out!! Use your alchemy abilities!! You should be able to now.』
Reito put both his hands on the magical metal door before him and used “Matter Transmutation,” much like he had used “Metal Transmutation before.
The door shined brightly as the Magical Metal was gradually transformed.
“This is incredible!”
His skill level had been reset, so it took quite the time. The door gradually changed from an ore called Reflection Stone to just an ordinary iron door.
Reito muttered to himself, feeling dizzy.
“This is really taking a lot out of me!”
『The skill is more potent, so it burns more energy. But, it appears you’re getting quite the reward for what you put in.』
“What is the duration of the effects of “Matter Transmutation?”
『It isn’t as long as “Metal Transmutation.” At your current level, the moment you let go, it’ll go back to how it was before.』
“So, I need to do something about the key right away… Was it called ‘High-Speed Shape Change’?”
Reito used “High-Speed Shape Change” to unlock the door. More complicated shape changes were possible than with the original “Shape Change,” and the speed had improved as well.
“Huhh… My head hurts!”
『 You’re still not used to your abilities. Try to imagine you’ve gone back to just learning how to use magic.』
The moment he entered the storage room, his alchemy magic wore off, and the door went back to being a magic metal door again. Reito held his head with his hand and went inside.
“So this is the storage room… ‘photosphere’.”
He lit up his surroundings using the beginner’s magic. The light ball stayed floating by him and functioned as a kind of flashlight, hovering around the room.”
“It’s really dusty here.”
『It hasn’t been used for a while. There are weapons in there that were manufactured in the Imperial Age. They are all rusty, but if you were to clean them up and retemper them, they should be usable.』
“So, one of those is a holy sword… Where is it?”
『 It’s towards the back, in one of the smaller boxes in the storage room.』
After receiving confirmation from Airis, he proceeded toward the back of the room.
“All said and done, this is a little too dusty. Suramin, change into a mask.”
Wearing the Suramin mask, he went to the back of the storage room. Just as Airis said, there was a relatively small box.
“This box… Will anything happen if I open it.”
“One, two… All right!!” He opened the box with great energy to find a flurry of dust. He swept it away and checked the inside of the box.
What he found was a rusty longsword. It was probably a beautiful treasure back in the day. But, what he saw in front of him was a dirty and scarred sword.
Reito communicated with Airis.
『Is this it?』
『 That’s right. It has lost its power at present. It should have enough strength to hold its own against any holy sword. Its name is Caledfwlch. It’s the oldest holy sword in the world.』
『Caledfwlch… Some people say that’s the sword that is the model for Excalibur.』
『So you know a lot about it. Is that from your video games? In this world, it has both lightning and holy class powers. But, at present, you won’t be able to make much use of it.』
『I know that just by looking at it. Can I bring it back to life using my evolved alchemy skills?』
『I understand that you want to try your new skills. But, it won’t be possible. The problem is the magic crystals. The “lightning stone” is in it, but you can’t use it. You have to be someone who can use lightning element magic, or it won’t be possible.』
『Lightning element… I don’t know that kind of magic yet.』
『 I’m sure you’ll pick it up eventually. For now, grab the sword and let’s get out of here.』
『How are we going to get out of here? The same way we came?』
『Actually, there’s a secret corridor that leads out of here. This used to be a castle, after all. The royal family had a secret escape route put in. This secret is not known even to the current owner of the castle.』
『Escape route… where is it?』
『Look at the ceiling. You can see a summoning circle there. Hit it with any kind of magic. We’re in the storage room, so no noise should leak out.』
Reito finished communicating with Airis before using his “Observing Eye” to scope out the ceiling. Just as she had said, there was a summoning circle engraved on the ceiling.
Reito immediately used his beginner’s magic on the ceiling.
The moment that magic energy collided with the summoning circle, it began to shine. The wall behind Reito released a lot of dust as it opened up vertically.
The secret corridor was revealed.
He was surprised by its scale as he used storage magic to collect the holy sword and enter the corridor.
『Where does this lead?』
『It used to lead to the clock tower outside of the castle. The clock tower was disassembled, so now it just leads to an empty plot. Do you remember the person you saw before using Transfer Magic?』
Airis asked before Reito remembered. That’s right, there was a person like that. In the empty plot where he first met Kotomin, he witnessed a strange figure wearing a hood do a “Transfer”.
『Anyhow, it’s connected to that empty plot.』
『… If I’m going back on land, how should I handle that?』
『 There’s an entrance covered with dirt. Please blow that out of the way with magic. Run away before there’s a large commotion- don’t go to the Guild, run straight home.』
Reito listened to Airis’s advice as he advanced through the hidden corridor.
“This is really long… If it hasn’t been used in hundreds of years, why is it so well lit?”
“Those are light stones. You saw them with Gonzo before. They fixed the ore into the ceiling. They are a crystal material.”
It was as complex of a structure as you would expect for the escape route of the royal family.
If you didn’t know the correct route, you would definitely get lost. But, Reito listened to Airis’s advice as he followed the route.
“Are there any traps here?”
『There are, but if you know the route, you won’t get caught in them, so don’t worry. That ladder right there is the exit. Like I said before, use magic to blow the top off』
“Got it… Ah, that ladder.”
Reito looked up and saw a lid in the ceiling. He used attack magic and remembered something out of nowhere.
『Airis, I know it’s a weird time to ask. But, when I was fighting with Gain, I used Gravity Blade, right?』
『Yes, what about that?』
『I also added Magic Reinforcement on top of that, right?』
『I see what you’re getting at.』
Reito used “Magic Reinforcement” to increase the Gravity Blade’s strength. Up until then, he had never used “Magic Reinforcement” properly.
Why was that? He asked Airis before she politely explained.
『The ability you manifested as a technical skill became established as one skill. Even if you used multiple skills before, you could create a new one if it’s a technical skill. You could stack them on top of one another』
『Oh, that’s how I did that.』
『For example, try using ‘Magic Reinforcement’ and ‘Flame Bullet’ together – a skill you originally produced using ‘Fireball’ and ‘Magic Reinforcement’ together. It will be just like the Gravity Blade.』
『Are you serious?』
Reito looked at the ceiling and got his hands ready.
Up to now, “Flame Bullet” was the most potent magic he had. Who knows what would happen if he were to add “Magic Reinforcement” on top of that.
He was a little excited, “Flame Bullet!!”
Usually, the “Fireballs” would be released like the bullets of a gun. But this time, fire came out of his hands like a beam of light in a big fire explosion – the exit was immediately blown off.
The corridor shook as if there had been a great earthquake. The light beam fired straight out, leaving a giant hole where it had been.
A new skill-acquired banner appeared, but he didn’t have time to check it.
『Congratulations. You’ve got a new skill… But, you’ve got to go. Someone who heard that thunderous noise is going to come by soon.』
Reito escaped from the hidden corridor and crawled onto land.