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Chapter: 73


Greydra

The skill [Greater Health] will have its name changed into [Extra Health] from now on.

"So-so-so. Everything is alright now." - Aino

The second train car was as...easy as the first one. And after the instant execution of these ruffians, Aino and Bloom had to enter the car to calm down the passengers. Again. Here I'm saving them and all I get in return is fear and tears? What sorta demon king of fear am I?

"Garami, it's fine to butcher the Ghouls, but do you have to inflict emotional damage to the passengers? There are small kids here too." - Aino

"...ghouls?" - Garami

"The hijackers you cut into a thousand pieces...why are you hiding behind the seats?" - Aino

".........no r-r-r-r-r-reason..." - Garami

Th-th-th-th-those g-g-g-g-guys are...l-li-like th-those guys? F-f-f-f-from th-the em-emer-emergency q-quest?!

"Don't tell me..." - Aino

"Mistress, are you bad with the undead?" - Bloom

"N-n-n-n-n-not at all!" - Garami

"She is bad with them." - Bloom

I'm t-t-telling you I'm not!!

"You're right. Her voice is three octaves higher than normal." - Aino

N-n-n-no it's not!! (C octave)

"Then why are you hiding over there?" - Bloom

B-b-b-because I'm...why are you pointing behind me? There's nothing......

"Hello." - Moving skeleton

"-------!!!" - Garami (High C octave)

Sk-ske-skeleton!? I got so scared-*Cough!*-, I got so surprised that I jumped up at the car's ceiling and got stuck to it. For three seconds, then I fell head-first into the floor. Ouch... The only blessing is that the...the...the "G-things"1The corpses of the Ghouls. were moved away already.

"Mistress~, you should not scream like that~. The hijackers will hear you~." - Bloom

*Sniff*, Bloom is turning into a delinquent...

Meanwhile, the skeleton was mumbling stuff like "Is my face that scary..." while having a depressed expression...maybe not. But he looks so miserable that dark clouds could appear over his head any minute.

"Hey, excuse my pitiful leader who is still scared of ghost stories." - Aino

Hey, foxy lady! I'll have you pay for that later!

"Okay...hold on! You're the Demon Princess!" - Skeleton

"HIIII!!" - Garami

"Eh, please speak to me if you want to pass on a message." - Aino

"Oh, okay. Starting from the beginning, my name's Black Bone! An aspiring necromancer of the honorable Skeleton race, and-!" - Black Bone

"Please cut down the edginess. You are scaring the customers." - Aino

"So sorry about that. This game's just too good, so..." - Black Bone

...he is a Migrant? AKA, a player? ...that helps. I'm starting to calm down.

"Starting from scratch, I'm Black Bone, but just call me Bone if that's easier. I'm a Migrant like you guys...except for this pretty little lady. Why is such a beautiful girl like you traveling with the Demon Princess?" - Black Bone

Stop trying to hit on my servant, you bag of bones! And please don't say "slave". Please don't say "slave". Please don't say "slave"...

"I am working for mistress Garami as her maid after she saved my life." - Bloom

Good going, Bloom! Phew, my reputation's saved.

"Wow! The princess' kinder than the rumors say!" - Black Bone

"Focus, Bone! Was there something you wanted to tell us?" - Aino

"Oh, that's right. I traveled to the Umbral region to see the Princess so I could warn her, but let's do that after the train's safe." - Black Bone

Warning a princess? From the flow of the conversation...it's me he's talking about. MORE problems!? Come on...

"As for on HOW to save the train, we got to get the idiot leading these Ghouls." - Black Bone

"You know the perpetrator?" - Aino

"Anyone with knowledge of the undead could guess themselves to the identity of the dork leading these Ghouls." - Black Bone

They can?

"...now that you mention it..." - Bloom

Huh? You're getting what he's saying, Bloom?

"If it's Ghouls..."

"It can only be "them" if they are using Ghouls..."

"Not to mention there were too few of them for taking over the whole train..."

And now all the other passengers are starting to agree with him too!?

"There is only one possible solution to this crime! The assailant's leader is a Vampire noble!" - Black Bone

...?

"Vampires...aren't they strong?" - Garami

"I was having the same impression. Maybe it is different in this world?" - Aino

"Those guys? Statistically, they're strong, yes. However, they're so strong that they stop using their brains." - Black Bone

Wow. Vampires have a low rep in this game.

"Especially the nobles that were born into their power. They look down on the living and think they're so awesome, but their racial rank is only D, plus they have tons of weaknesses that they don't bother to cover. I know far too well. Almost every quest to defend cities or commoners have those guys as the bad guys in one way or another." - Black Bone

"...and your reason to think that it's one of these idiots attacking this train is...?" asked Aino with a face of unbelief. I know how she feels. Even I can't imagine there being someone that dumb out there.

"Ghouls are the normal pre-evolution stage for Vampires, plus you got to be stupid not taking enough subordinates with you for a train hijack." - Black Bone

That's true. There's only 1 more car before we reach the engine. They didn't even have enough guys to reach our car.

"You guys may not have noticed, but the train has been slowly picking up the pace. I bet that the Vampire is controlling the engine." - Black Bone

"Why are they doing that?" - Aino

"Don't ask me. Trying to guess what's going on in those idiots' heads is impossible." - Black Bone

And all the other passengers (+ Bloom) are nodding along. It seems that the possibility for vamps is high on this train...

"Then what are we going to do?" - Aino

"...you and Bones go through the next car. Take out the goons." - Garami

"The next car is an empty cargo car. I'm not sure if there are any Ghouls left there." - Black Bone

"Unless it's not empty... Maybe there is something hidden in there that the vampire is looking for?" - Aino

"Huh? What would that be?" - Black Bone

"We should capture this vampire and have them tell us." - Aino

"I'll do that." - Garami

"If there is something in the cargo car for real, then there's probably too many Ghouls there to sneak around them." - Black Bone

"Only if you go through the car." - Garami

---

There's the engine. And I got to climb on the roof of a running train as well. Another thing crossed out on my "Cool stuff I've seen in anime and wanna replicate"-list. 

I took a peek into the cargo car before climbing, and there was a trainload of Ghouls inside. The sight brought back some nasty memories from the emergency quest before I conquered the Darkland Fort. 

Forget that part, Garami! The engine's right in front of you! Focus on that! 

"What do you mean "there are intruders in the cargo room"? All of you fools, get rid of them immediately!"

Geh, ghouls! But they're leaving the engine room. Looks like Aino and the skeleton's distraction is working. And going by the snobbish tone of the guy from before...

Carefully, I snuck into the engine room and found a high-class-looking fellow with pale skin and red eyes. Plus fangs. It seems the skeleton got a bingo here. This guy's attitude and appearance just scream "vampire". 

"Blasted! This train is supposed to only lowly peasants! Why are the ghouls created by the great me losing to them!?" - Vampire dude

Eh, because the "lowly peasants" aren't only non-combatants? Besides, those ghouls had low stats and half-assed weapons. Is this guy so full of his "nobility" that he can't see that?

"*Sniff, sniff*, who goes there!" - Vampire dude

Whoa-! The guy launched an attack on the crate I was hiding behind! Was that a blood whip? So awesome! I want a poison-variant of that. But how did he notice me? Don't tell me vampires can sniff out blood or something... 

I think I'm right on the nose here. Pun not intended. 

"What are you!? How did you go past my honorable ghouls!?" - Vampire dude

No, I didn't go past them, I went around them. 

"Whatever. Just stay there as I plunge this train into that blasted terminal!" - Vampire dude

The vampire lashed out with both his words and his whip against me, so I jumped away before the latter could hit me. His words, on the other hand, gave me a little shock. Does this guy plan on crashing the train into the train station? Why?

I'll take my time interrogating him later. For now, I'll beat him black and blue!

"[Blood Arrow]!" - Vampire dude

"Summoning: Nala!" - Garami

The vampire tried to attack me with arrows made outta his blood, but I summoned Nala to shield me from his attack. Nala got surprised by the arrows, but she shielded her face, so there was not much damage done to her.

"What blasted atrocity is this!?" - Vampire dude

Hey, she's still a girl despite her appearance. 

The engine room was bigger than one would have expected, mostly to host the huge magic-like engines there. Even after summoning Nala, there's still lots of space for us to move around as we please. 

Nala, not happy about being greeted with a bunch of arrows, aimed the trident-looking weapons in her arms at the vampire while preparing shields made of water to guard herself. 

I'm not the only one who has been training before the Dojo was lost. Both Nala and Nyx, the latter who's currently helping Aino's group, have gotten their skill levels way higher than before. 

Name:  Nala | [Garami's Follower] Race: Sea Stalker | Tamed Creature Gender: Female Level: 32/50  Traits: 2 Karma Value: 17 Main Class: Bouncer Lv.25 Sub Class: Water Protector Lv.21 Sub Class: Spear Soldier Lv.17 Skills: 17 Titles: 9 Aether Points: 0.9 HP: 396/396 [+10] MP: 174/174 [+10] SP: 234/234 [+10] STR: 341 [+10] VIT: 356 [+10] MAG: 105 [+10] RES: 259 [+10] SPD: 145 [+10] DEX: 254 [+10] INT: 100 [+10] LUC: 156 [+10] LP: 15

Skill List:

Spoiler Skill List: Ability Skills:

[Extra Health Lv.1] [Health Auto-Recovery Lv.8] NEW [Strength Lv.10] NEW [Tougher Vitality Lv.1] EVOLVED     Attack Skills:

[Defense Arts (Water) Lv.10] UP3 [Spear Arts Lv.9] UP4 [Water Blow Lv.10] UP1 [Sea Foam Lv.5] NEW     Active Skills:

[Cover Lv.10]  [Cover Move Lv.7] NEW [Taunting Lv.10]   Passive Skills:

[Spear Proficiency Lv.10] UP4 [Masochistic Constitution Lv.10]    Elements: [Lesser Water Talent Lv.6] UP5 [Lesser Ocean Talent Lv.3] UP2   Monster Skills: [Power Tentacle Lv.10] UP4 [Sneak Tentacle Lv.10] UP4  [Sea Creature Lv.5] UP2 [collapse]

Title List:

Spoiler Title List: Achievement Titles:

[Army of One]  [Quest Veteran] ADVANCED   Hunting Titles:

[First Kill: Insect]  [Insect Slayer]  [Monster Slaughterer] NEW  [Beast Slayer] NEW  [Fish Slayer] NEW  [Demon Slayer] NEW  Status Titles:

[Garami's Follower]      [collapse]

Like me, Nala's been getting the standard Warrior-line skills, [Strength] and [Vitality], by clearing quests given by the Union. Who'd guess they allow even tamed monsters to take those? After some intense training, Nala wanted to evolve her [Vitality] skill, so I allowed that. Her defense becoming better is a wonderful thing for me.

She also spent some AP to boost her Talent skills. That auto-recovery skill of hers is a godsend since none of us have healing abilities at the moment. Then there's the new [Sea Foam] skill that can distract and blind opponents. Add in the [Cover Move] skill that lets Nala quickly go and defend an ally when she needs to, and we have an even better tank than what Nala was before. But will it be enough?

While Nala was facing off against the vampire, I hid in the shadows of the huge engine. I'll have Nala act as the front line while I'm bullying the vampire from the sidelines. I wonder how mister bloodsucker will react when he's gotten a boatload of status ailments from my Evil Eyes...?

Huh? They're not working? The vampire's still acting like nothing's been done to him. Sure, Evil Eyes aren't 100% foolproof even at Lv.10, but I expected some reaction from him...

Can it be!? Since vampires technically are classified as a type of undead, are they somehow resilient to status ailments in the same manner as normal undead like Skeletons or Zombies!? I've heard that you can never inflict stuff like Poison or Paralyze on a zombie, but for someone that human-looking to share the same trait...

This is bad. I'm confident in my webs and my Evil Eyes, but if the latter doesn't work, then I'm in deep trouble. Nala's starting to struggle against the vampire, who has swapped his whip for a spear of blood (maybe he transformed it), so I can't depend on her beating the bloodsucker. 

In that case, back to plan A and capture the jerk! 

Or so I wanted to say, but Nala managed to stab the vampire with her trident before I could do anything. Good job! Except that the vampire turned into a swarm of bats instead of being hurt. Blasted! ...now I'm starting to sound like the bastard. 

The bat swarm went not for Nala, but for me who was still hiding behind the engine. Tch, so I can't fool this guy's nose(?) by staying close to this thing and the "mana exhaust" it releases after all. 

I jumped out of hiding and threw several Web Bombs at the swarm. The second before they "exploded", the swarm returned to his human shape and swung his blood spear, swiping away the bombs before they could hit.

"Blasted peasant!" - Vampire dude

The vampire tried to stab me with his spear, but I hindered him by releasing Mystical Threads. While he dodged them, I threw a bunch of Spider's Threads toward the ceiling before using [Thread Control] to make them rain down upon him.

"Such a blasted measly trick-!" - Vampire dude

Is working. Because the threads got the vampire's attention, prolly because he must be thinking they're dangerous after having dodged the Mystical Threads right before, I could throw a Web Bomb at his feet without being noticed. 

"What is this!?" - Vampire dude

The bomb "detonated" and webbed the vampire to the floor. The surprise made the vampire forget about the threads coming from the ceiling, so he got showered with enough webbing to make him look like a cocoon. 

Capture complete! ...or, that's what I want to say, but the vampire broke himself out of the cocoon after just a few seconds' worths of struggling.

"Blasted pheasant, no, demoness! Do you think you can keep this great me entangled with such puny textile!" - Vampire dude

Hey, give me points for trying. And there's a sneaky tentacled demoness right behind you too. 

Nala managed to score a surprise attack on the vampire's back, but the damage was too low. The vampire simply turned around and started to duke it out with Nala again while sending more of those blood arrows at me. 

Tch, how can I beat this guy? Evil Eyes doesn't work (I've been using them all this time but to no luck), the webs only last for a second, and if Nala's attack power doesn't make him even flinch, then there's less chance that my daggers can do the same.

My daggers do have special effects added to them, yes, but one is related to status ailments, so I'm not sure if it will work. The second one prevents recovery, but how many "scratches" must I give this guy before he falls? Not to mention, will my stamina last for so long? One hit and I'm probably out. That's the feeling I get from those heavy attacks the vampire is showering Nala with.

...fine. I admit defeat. I can't defeat this guy. The normal way, at least.

While the vampire was occupied with Nala, I ran to the pass between the engine room and the next car. From there, I prepared a long thread and threw one end at the vampire's wrist. Through skillful use of [Thread Control], I wrapped the thread around the vampire's wrist. Then I threw the other end, which was way stickier than the first end, at something outside the running train.

"What are you doing, you blaaaaaaaaa-!!??" - Vampire dude

The vampire got dragged out of the engine room thanks to my thread not breaking from the impact. That'll keep him from bothering us anymore. Mercy for him if he ever tries to bother me again. I'll prepare some holy water and garlic in case that happens.

Glad I managed to raise its skill level that high before the Dojo was removed. But now I gotta stop this train. 

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