Shiru: Sometimes chapters can take me longer to finish. It depends on the length and how much free time I have.
There was a small mistake I made. I translated the Author’s note in Chapter 65 as “In Arc 3, an enemy which Usato’s Healing Punch will be effective against will appear.”
The ‘will be’ is actually ‘won’t be’.
Correction: In Arc 3, an enemy which Usato’s Healing Punch won’t be effective against will appear.
The next day, we headed towards the nearby village to procure food.
Ark-san was walking a bit behind us as he led the horse along. At the head of the group was Bluerin, Amako, and me. We would continue our journey like this without any problems as usual… At least that’s what I thought. But it was a little different today.
Amako suddenly held her ears.
Did she perceive something humans couldn’t? Now curious, I tried listening with my ears.
A woman… No, a young girl’s voice?
I stopped walking and listened more carefully. As I did so, the surrounding trees rustled and a shriek resounded—
“SOMEONE SAVE ME!!”
I began to run once I heard the girl’s cry for help.
I don’t know what the situation is like but it’s definitely an emergency. If I waited for everyone else, it might be too late to save her. I decided to go ahead of them since my legs are faster. Amako and the rest can just come afterwards.
I climbed up the shallow slope that was encircled by trees. Beyond the slope, I could make out several figures in the distance. I had to strain my eyes to see due to how far they were…. I could see a girl around the same age as me in tattered clothes and she was being surrounded by a group.
It looks like she hasn’t been met with any danger yet. But from the looks of it, the group surrounding her didn’t look like an honest bunch with good intentions…. Their eyes looked devoid of life and they had pale skin.
I need to hurry and save her, I don’t know what they’ll do.
The girl noticed me running towards her as I yelled out. I also created a magic orb and threw it with as much strength as I could.
My magic orb flew straight towards the guys surrounding the girl and blew two of them away.
I arrived at the gap I created from sending the two guys tumbling and immediately carried the girl away. Using this moment, I checked to see if the girl was safe.
“Are you okay!? Are you injured!?”
“Eh!? …..Umm…… What was that just now…?”
The girl’s pupils shrunk into dots and looked up at me.
She had long light-brown hair that reached her shoulders and beautiful amber-colored eyes. Maybe I was scared that something happened to the girl; as I stared intently at her and met the gaze of her moist eyes…… I involuntarily gulped.
Somehow, I ended up being charmed by her.
I’m not the type to fall in love at first sight with a girl I just met right…? Is it because I’ve only been around females with weird personalities? As a result of that, I don’t have any resistance towards normal girls?
While shaking off my evil thoughts, I lowered the girl onto the ground.
“Stay behind me. My friends will come in a moment… Leave these guys to me.”
I had to deal with this group first.
From their attire, they didn’t look like bandits. They aren’t a type of monster either.
They wore torn clothes like a vagrant and their arms were hanging languidly. In the slight gap formed by their bangs, their lifeless eyes stared at me.
I see, they’re perverts… No matter what world it is, there will always be people like this.
“Why are you all trying to assault this girl…?”
Despite trying to start a conversation with them, I was ignored.
The two guys that I knocked away with my healing magic a moment ago stood back up like nothing happened and faced me.
……I’ll try threatening them.
“Umm, these guys are…”
“I don’t know what you’re all trying to accomplish by assaulting this girl but…… If you come any closer, I’ll pluck out one of your arms.. for the time being. If you don’t want that, then tell me the reason you’re targeting this girl. For the guys that are planning on trying something funny— Prepare yourselves for the worst, you shitty bastards.”
“…….Hm? Were you saying something just now?”
“I-i-i-i-i-i-i-it’s nothing at all.”
The girl looked paler than before and turned her head away while her body was shaking.
It looks like I ended up frightening the girl behind me instead of the group in front of me.
It looked like the other side wasn’t threatened at all. In fact, they were coming closer.
As I sighed, I quietly coated healing magic over my fist and let the girl behind me retreat back.
“I guess there’s no choice… Don’t think poorly of me!! You should get back!!”
One of the perverts gave an ominous cry and rushed at me. I tightly squeezed my fist coated with healing magic and launched a punch with all my strength at the approaching target’s stomach.
I knocked him about 5 meters away and lightly shook my fist. Once his body hit the ground, he rolled for a bit before stopping.
How’s that…? It’s a punch without holding back. It should be more than enough to knock you unconscious.
“W-what is going on…?”
The girl behind me was awfully confused but she was probably just surprised by the power of my fist.
While feeling a little sad that I was used to this kind of reaction by now, I looked at the man I knocked away.
……However, it felt too solid. Was he hiding an iron plate or something behind his clothes? While phrasing it like this was in poor taste… It didn’t feel like the sensation of punching a person.
As I felt something out of place, I turned my attention to the remaining guys but… The man I knocked away got up, which astonished me.
“You got up… You sure are tough… Wait!?”
His abdomen caved in!?
Why? There shouldn’t have been that much power. Additionally, my healing magic should have healed it.
No, before all that… Why was he able to stand up like that!?
While I didn’t fully understand this strange situation, several of them commenced their attack.
I coated my fist with healing magic, still bewildered, and swung at all of them. They all felt strangely hard.. and brittle. It felt like I was punching at the trunk of a tree.
Was magic not effective against these guys? Were they not human?
“My Healing Punch isn’t effective…”
As I used a Healing Punch and knocked away one of them, I felt shocked.
To think that my technique would be nullified like this…
Healing magic wasn’t effective. This was an enemy that I couldn’t knock unconscious.
I used a roundhouse kick against two guys and blew them away. Another one tried to grab me from the side but I caught his arm and threw him onto the ground.
“Just what should I do…?”
I formed a magic orb with the hand I had just used to throw, and fired it behind me, right into the assailant’s face. New technique, Healing Blind— Form an orb of magic and gently blind the opponent, obstructing their vision. The attacker that had tried to punch me ended up punching a nearby tree instead.
“…Looks like healing magic really isn’t effective, huh…”
All of them started getting back up again. Seeing this, I sighed for the second time today.
Healing Punch… No, any attack with healing magic is easily defeated. Just what on Earth are these guys? Is it a special race or something? At any rate, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s creepy.
“Wouldn’t it be fine to just beat them up normally!? Are you an idiot, Usato!?”
“No, that’s true but you see…”
As I knocked another one to the ground, I replied to Amako who had appeared and shouted at me.
It’s not like I had to use my Healing Punch, I had plenty of other ways to fight as well. In the end, the Healing Punch was “A punch that would keep my opponent safe to a certain extent.” If I couldn’t use it and I didn’t want to hurt my opponent, I just had to knock them down or pin them down.
“You sure are doing things in a flashy manner again… Usato-dono.”
Ark-san sounded troubled as he looked at what was happening in front of him. I breathed out in relief.
I realized it as I fought but, while these guys have a lot of physical strength, their speed is unexpectedly slow.
It was different from the Demons or Humans. They groan, act violently, and only go for the prey that’s right in front of them like wild animals.
“Just what are these guys?”
“……Usato’s healing magic doesn’t work on them and their bodies look like this… It’s my first time seeing them but I suspect they are—“
They couldn’t be injured nor bleed. They kept getting up no matter.
I focused my gaze on Ark-san and he blurted out a name that fulfilled these conditions.
That name was, in a certain sense, a famous name of a monster back in my original world.
“Zombies, is it…?”
“They are deceased that continue to move as corpses. No matter what kind of wounds they suffer, they will stand right back up. Although they are sluggish, they’ve surpassed the human limits for physical strength. They are that kind of ‘monster.’”
They weren’t humans, but monsters.
I knew a bit about the zombies in this world. It was only from what I’ve read but, the monsters known as zombies are a specific type of monster that derived from humans that have died. They are reanimated and manipulated like puppets.
It wasn’t an infection or anything. Of course, you won’t become a zombie if you get bitten.
“Then, if these guys are zombies like you said… There should be someone manipulating them somewhere, right?”
“I believe so.”
In any case, I now knew why my healing magic didn’t work against them. Zombies were dead humans, in other words, undead. Healing magic only has an effect on the living.
I released the healing magic that was coating my limbs.
It wasn’t necessary to use anymore healing magic. I had no choice but to punch them like sacks of meat and finish this.
“Attacks that are effective against them would be something like Kazuki-sama’s light magic which possesses the holy element. Also—“
Ark-san stepped forward and unsheathed his sword.
When he did so, flames traveled from the edge of his sword to the zombies, and vigorously burned them.
Fire magic. Infusing fire magic into his sword and releasing it at the same time of his draw…… So cool. How should I say it? It looked so stylish when he drew his sword like that.
While I secretly admired Ark-san’s technique, his flames were enveloping the expressionless zombies and burning them. They shook in fear and cried out.
“GYA, AAAH…. AAAAH!!”
“They are weak to fire. Please leave the rest to me.”
“…Then I’ll gladly accept your kind intentions.”
The zombies became agitated before Ark-san’s flames and started scattering in every direction.
Zombies are weak to fire, huh. Well, they did feel like dry wood when I was punching them. I guess it makes sense that they easily burn…?
“Well, anyhow… Amako, is that girl okay?”
“Yeah….. I don’t think she’s hurt anywhere.”
I turned around and confirmed that the girl was safe beside Amako and Bluerin.
And Amako… You’re wearing your hood again. It looks like you still wear it except when only we’re around. Well, it was probably a good idea in this current situation.
“You saved me when I was in danger…… Ah, I’m called Neah! Umm, erm… Thank you very much!!”
It seems like her fear has faded since the zombies were now gone. The girl, Neah-san, gave a radiant smile and bowed her head.
Her smile was far too dazzling, I couldn’t help but turn my head away.
“You live in the nearby village?”
The girl who was assaulted by the group of zombies, Neah-san, replied.
She was one of the inhabitants of the village and came here in order to look for medicinal plants. She then encountered the zombies but luckily met us and was saved.
Currently, she wanted to thank us and was guiding us to the village.
The unexpected part was that it seemed she wasn’t particularly afraid of Bluerin. Despite how the students in Luquis would be shaking the moment Bluerin entered their line of sight, Neah-san wasn’t afraid at all and would even smile.
……She did travel all the way from the village on her own. Maybe she had more guts than you would expect.
“Usato-san, you sure possess an amazing magic.”
“Yeah? Amazing magic…?”
“You could easily knock those zombies away and could fire a magic orb with such speed. I’ve never seen someone fire a magic orb that fast before. Is it some kind of magic that strengthens the body? Or are you using wind magic to accelerate it? No, don’t tell me it’s actually the rare gravity magic?”
I wonder if this is how it felt to be indirectly treated as an otherworldly being…
Amako, you just laughed, right?
I glared at Amako, who was quivering and hiding under her hood. Then I gave an awkward smile to Neah-san who was looking at me with sparkling eyes.
Her innocent smile was far too dazzling for someone with a corrupted mind like me…
“N-no… Umm. I’m a healing magician, you see.”
“………..Hah? Healing.. magician…… Eh, but aren’t healing magicians only capable of healing others…”
“Like I said, that’s… I was just fighting normally just a moment ago, I didn’t use much magic.”
Neah-san’s eyes opened wide. She probably didn’t think that the magic I had was actually healing magic of all things… A magic that could only heal.
“I-In other words… Just now…”
“It was all hand-to-hand combat without any magic… I don’t blame you for being surprised. After all, Usato is a healing magician that’s all brawn.”
Hold it in. You can do it, me. Neah-san is still here… Amako’s punishment will be dealt afterwards…
“Hahaha, it’s just as Amako-dono said. He has an unconventional way of using magic. But thanks to that, it’s also true that he was able to save many lives.”
Ark-san gave an exquisitely good follow-up and brought Neah-san back to her senses. It seems like she thought her behavior just now was rude. She suddenly turned to face me and said,
“No! I was just surprised. I was absolutely not thinking of anything rude about Usato-san!!”
“Y-yeah. I don’t really mind it so..”
I replied to Neah-san who was drawing closer to me with a frantic expression. I thought this before but.. I couldn’t make eye contact with this girl for some reason.
She wasn’t like Inukami-senpai who desired the attention and was brimming with curiosity. She wasn’t like Uluru-san who was lively and cheerful either. If I had to choose something, she reminded me more of a puppy.
In a good sense, I felt a desire to protect her. In a bad sense, she was pushy.
“Wait, too close, too close.”
Upon noticing that she had gotten too close to my personal space, Neah-san’s face turned bright red and took 3 steps back. In addition, I felt like she was directing a passionate gaze towards me.
Hey, hey. Don’t tell me this is… Lo—
“Uguoh!? Amako, what are you doing all of a sudden!?!?”
“……Usato, you’ll be deceived by a woman in the future. Definitely.”
What’s with that remark!? If it were anyone else, I would think they’re just being jealous. But when you’re the one saying it, I can’t help but feel anxious, you know!? Amako had abruptly kicked me in the shin and suddenly given me that warning. I couldn’t conceal my fear once I heard them.
“You’re being too dere-dere. I can’t bear to watch this.”
“Be quiet. Leaving that aside, what you said just now, is it a premonition or something?”
Why are you being silent now!?
Seeing the exchange between me and Amako, Neah-san had calmed down. She then gave a stiff smile and said,
“It’s been a while since I’ve seen people outside from the village. I might’ve been a little too excited.”
“It’s been a while, you say. Does that mean there aren’t a lot of people stopping by your village?”
Neah-san’s expression darkened once she heard Ark-san’s question.
After a brief period of silence, Neah-san opened her mouth and spoke with sorrow,
“That’s right…… Zombies have been frequently appearing…… Because of that, it has been causing a lot of trouble for us.”
I can certainly say that if those ominous zombies are loitering around the village, not many people would want to approach. In that case, traders won’t come. The village’s livelihood would suffer as a result and life would be more difficult for everyone.
If I thought about it carefully, just the fact that this ordinary girl without any power was gathering herbs all the way here should have been enough for me to guess their circumstances.
She was well-aware of how reckless it was to gather herbs here……
“Do you know the reason why the zombies have appeared?”
“……No, we don’t have the slightest idea.”
It seems they didn’t know the reason.
If we knew the origin for the outbreak of zombies, there would be plenty of ways to resolve it.
I returned from my musings once I heard Neah-san’s words.
From what I could see in front, there was an entrance… Inside, there were houses lined up and they looked a bit old. It was a small village. Although it was small, it was bigger than I expected. It felt like the farm villages in the countryside back in my original world.
“That’s where I was born and raised, the Village of Iyava.”
Neah-san looked relieved. It was probably because she was able to safely return to the village.
Looking closely at the village’s surroundings, the outer walls were different from Lyngle and Luquis… They were made with simplicity in mind… They didn’t provide much protection and were made out of wood. The outer walls were just there to mark what territory the village covered. The houses weren’t sturdily built either, they were just wooden buildings that had aged.
A woman called out to Neah-san from the village and started running over here. It was probably someone Neah-san knew, as she also started to run towards the woman.
“I’m glad…… You didn’t say anything and headed outside the village, I was very worried…”
The old woman gently embraced Neah-san.
“I’m sorry, but….. We didn’t have enough herbs…”
“If it’s medicine, we’re still okay… It’s almost time for the village to send the young men out to gather some. At any rate, I’m just glad you’ve safely returned. And, who are these people behind you…?”
“They are the ones who saved me when zombies were attacking me. Everyone, this is Tetra-san. She’s someone like.. my parent.”
After separating from the woman’s embrace, Neah-san faced us and gave introductions.
Tetra-san didn’t completely understand what was going on for a moment, but once she heard that we saved Neah-san, she immediately gave a bow and tenderly smiled.
“I’m truly grateful to you all for saving this girl. She’s really a girl with far too much courage… It’s quite troublesome. I really don’t know how I can thank you…”
“W-wait a moment, Tetra-san!! We’re in front of guests, please don’t advance the conversation without me!”
Neah-san’s cheeks were bright red as she tried to stop Tetra-san who was lamenting.
I was a little curious when Neah-san said ‘someone like my parent’ but once I saw how these two interacted, I felt like there was no need to mind it.
“No, we just did what anyone should have done!”
Ah, that felt really normal for me to say.
Actually, I was surprised. I was able to say such a phrase so normally despite my plain existence.
“L-let’s head into the village for now. We’ll talk after that!”
“That’s true. Three people… A horse, and a Blue Grizzly cub, right? There’s a stable where you can put these two. You should probably do that first.”
We stepped into the village with Tetra-san and Neah-san.
Other than these two, there were a lot of other villagers. They were all tilling the fields, or taking care of the horses and cows… Activities along those lines.
Just as Neah-san had said, it looked like it was an unusual sight for people outside the village to stop by, as we were attracting a lot of attention from the villagers.
“We’re on a journey. If possible, we would like to receive some food but…”
“You don’t need to hold back. It looks like you’re all tired and have been traveling for a while. How about staying here for one day?”
“No, we’re in quite a hurry for this journey. We’re happy just for the thought. Besides, we can’t inconvenience you.”
Tetra-san slowly shook her head at Ark-san’s words.
We had an obligation to deliver the letters to other countries. Even if it was to thank us, we couldn’t stay here for a day and cause trouble for them. It was just like Ark-san said, their feelings were enough.
“You should properly rest when given the time to. Don’t you have a small child with you in your group? What will you do if you collapse during a critical moment? It would be better to get some sufficient rest now and be at your best condition before continuing on your journey.”
“Besides, I’m just an old woman who doesn’t have much time left. It would be best to accept my good favor.”
Tetra-san gave a lighthearted laugh while Ark-san seemed to be on the verge of giving up.
Neah-san, who was beside her, also gave a wry smile.
It looked the wisdom of age was powerful no matter which world you were in.
“Small child… Small child… But I’m 14 years old…”
Amako was whispering in shock.
Well, you had such a small build and if you looked from the side, there was no way you looked like 14.
“……Usato, did you just laugh?”
“Eh, no, I’m not laughing at all.”
I felt joy as Amako started drumming her fists on my back in silence.
I never forget the humiliation I receive, no matter what it is… Mostly! And if I can return the favor, you bet I will… As long as it’s an opponent I can return it to!!
As I was laughing and ridiculing her in my mind, Ark-san approached me and said,
“Usato-dono, it’s just as she says. I think we’ve become quite fatigued from traveling. Let’s accept their kindness and trouble them for one day.”
“……Although I can restore my stamina with my healing magic, I can’t heal mental fatigue.”
I was used to sleeping on the bare earth by now, but it’s not like I didn’t have any stress accumulated.
I felt a little guilty but I’ll take advantage of Tetra-san and Neah-san’s kindness. Tetra-san nodded in satisfaction after seeing that we accepted.
“Good, good. First of all, I’ll lead you to where the horse and the Blue Grizzly will sleep.”
I’ve heard the saying that, ‘If you pile enough good deeds, you will receive just as much as you’ve done.’ But it might not necessarily be wrong. That’s what I thought as I saw Tetra-san gently smiling.
After bringing Bluerin and the horse to the stables, we were invited to where Neah-san and Tetra-san lived.
Their wooden house was a little big with two stories tall. I thought it looked quite spacious and once we were led inside, there was enough space for the three of us to each have individual rooms.
“This place looks far too big for just two people to live.”
When I said that to Neah-san, she gave an awkward smile and looked a little lonely.
After giving us a small tour, we were led into our own rooms. Once the sky was dark, Neah-san informed us that dinner was ready.
I went down the stairs with Ark-san and Amako. Tetra-san and Neah-san were sitting in a table that could fit 6 people… There was warm cooking lined up as well.
Ark-san, I, and Amako took turns to sit down. Tetra-san tilted her head to the side as she looked at Amako. She directed a question at Amako, who had been wearing her hood this entire time—
“Oh my, why do you always have that hood on, little girl…?”
“……Ah, erm… That’s……”
We’ve been together this whole time and I’ve already forgotten the fact that Amako is a beastkin. Neah-san and Tetra-san looked at us suspiciously. Ark-san and I stiffened under their gazes.
However, Amako took off her hood without saying anything.
“Wait, Amako, you!?”
Amako exposed her fox ears that were on top of her glossy blonde hair. I was astonished but she shook her head as if to indicate that there was no need to worry.
“These people are fine. I’ve looked.”
Looked? Her foresight?
While I was still flustered, I turned to face Tetra-san and Neah-san. Tetra-san’s eyes slightly widened. Neah-san used both her hands to cover her mouth and her eyes were wide open. She was at a loss for words.
If a girl with beast ears suddenly popped out in front of you, anyone would be surprised! In addition, you’re—
“Hahahaha… Well, this is really surprising. I didn’t think you would be hiding such a lovely child.”
I unintentionally said so when I heard Tetra-san’s cheerful laugh.
“Human and beastkin are the same, it’s really just a difference of one tail. I’m not such a narrow-minded human to find fault with such little things and I’m not someone who doesn’t know how to show gratitude to people whom I’m indebted to.”
But Tetra-san followed with a few more words right after.
“However, you shouldn’t show these in front of anyone else. Not everyone is eccentric like me.”
This person was really bold, in various ways. Was this what they called an easygoing person? Either way, it looks like we didn’t need to worry too much for Amako’s secret here.
“I really didn’t think Amako-san would be a beastkin. I’m really astonished.”
Neah-san looked at Amako and voiced in wonder. There was no ill will, she was just genuinely curious.
“When we were making our way to the village, I thought that Usato-san and Amako-san got along really well with each other but… Now that I look at it, it’s really a mysterious relationship. After all, it’s not often you hear a human and a beastkin moving together like this.”
“Well, I’m aware it’s an unusual thing.”
I was told this many times during my stay in Luquis.
But from how I see it, both of your reactions are unusual too. I haven’t personally seen a human who didn’t like non-humans up close so I didn’t have a good idea how much they hated them but… I know they wouldn’t act friendly like you two.
“We can talk about this later, why don’t we have dinner first? We went through the trouble of making it, so we should eat it before it gets cold.”
“That’s true too. Here, here. Please go ahead and eat to your heart’s content!”
I reached out to the food as the two of them recommended.
All I’ve been eating these days were cold, dried meat and fruit. This hot soup is very delicious in comparison. Tetra-san said Neah-san made this soup as well. I see. She’ll become a good wife in the future.
…..Wait, what am I saying? Am I an old man or something!?!?
“Thanks for the food. It was really delicious.”
“Eh, no, you’re exaggerating.”
After finishing the meal, I gave my praise to Neah-san. It looked like she wasn’t used to given praise like this as her cheeks became red and she hung her head down.
……How should I say this? I’m not used to it. Whether it be her reactions or anything else. She was completely different from the females I’ve come across so far.
Is it because they were all strong, whether mentally or physically? Like Rose and Kiriha… Carla-san too. They were all strong in a sense, even though they were different.
“About those zombies… Do you know when they started appearing frequently around here?”
As Tetra-san was in the middle of cleaning the tableware, Ark-san asked Neah-san.
Was there something about the zombies that caught his interest?
“Zombies aren’t monsters that just occur naturally. They are monsters created by another’s hand. We might be able to determine the identity of the creator.”
Neah-san sunk into silence as she was speaking and Ark-san pressed her again. I didn’t know what Ark-san was trying to say but I knew he wasn’t someone who didn’t know how to hold back, especially when the other person was a girl like this.
I should leave this to him while carefully watching over the situation.
“Do you really not know? Perhaps, this village has some sort of guess as to who created these zombies?”
“Neah-san, I understand your feelings that you don’t want us to get involved but, could you tell us?”
Neah-san’s body trembled once she heard Ark-san’s words. From that, I understood something.
At first, when I asked about the zombies, she replied ‘We don’t know.’ But that was just a lie she made up because she was worried about us. In reality, she probably knew who the creator was, or even the place where these zombies were being made.
Before I realized it, Neah-san started speaking in broken fragments.
I suspect that once we knew the truth about the zombies, we’ll probably want to defeat the creator….. No, knowing myself, I know I would definitely go.
Neah-san didn’t want that, that’s why—
“The village, everyone here… Please save us.”
The figure of the girl, who was full of tears and that desired to be saved, overlapped with Amako who was next to her.
Author: The enemy that Usato’s healing magic isn’t effective against are the zombies.
And it will rather be more dangerous by preventing the use of healing magic… Because of the high endurance of the zombies, if Usato keeps punch them endlessly, he’ll become someone like Biscuit Oliva by the end. Shudder