I lived in Nanaze village as an Adventurer, and as the days passed, I found my place within the village. And since I was able to fit in comfortably like that, the next two years seemed to pass by so quickly.
I spent the day as I always did, and returned to my home. With help from the villagers, I had managed to build a small house that was just big enough for one person. It was while I was eating dinner that evening, that there was suddenly a great banging on the door.
“Mr. Ajifu! Please!”
It was Mr. Kemuit’s voice. He seemed quite frantic. And so I left my food and opened the door.
“What is it? What’s wrong?”
“Our children have not returned for dinner. Please help us find them!”
In such a place, your child not coming home on time was no light matter. Monsters roamed the area, not far from the village. Kemuit had two children. An older boy and younger girl. And both were missing.
“Where have you looked so far?”
I asked while preparing to go out.
“I called the defense team and we searched the village. No one saw them leave through the gate, but it’s possible they went out through a gap in the fence near the river.”
I stopped and turned around at this. There was a small river that was one meter wide, which was used to draw water from the forest to the fields. This was connected to a lake. However, there was a fence there to prevent monsters from getting in.
However, no one was better than a child when it came to finding ways out. In fact, with their size, a little digging would allow them to get through the cracks. If that was what had happened, then the situation was quite bad.
So instead of grabbing my jacket, I picked up my armor.
“I’ll head to the gate when I’m ready. You continue to search the village.”
It would likely turn into a village-wide search. I quickly strapped on my armor.
“Thank you. The defense team is not searching the outer rim.”
Mr. Kemuit left in a hurry. If the defense team was already searching outside of the fence, then I should probably check the river and forest.
However, the sun had already set, and so the forest would be very dark.
Eralt Lv4, Reverse Age Lv4, Farming Lv5, Carpentry Lv5 (+2), Carving Lv7 (+3), Leatherworker Lv5 (+2), Gathering Lv4 (+2), Shield Art Lv8, Magic Manipulation Lv17, Everyday Magic(light/water/earth), Sword Art Lv17, Night Vision Lv2 (+1), Parallel Thought Lv4, Prayer, Light Magic Lv9(+5), Amerata Lv1
Visitor From Another World, Farmer, Blessing of the Ability God, Adventurer, Creator’s Blessing.
I opened my status and checked my skills. After living in Nanaze for two years, my level has gone up steadily.
Skills weren’t bad either. A lot of my skills had already been suited towards living in a village. But even Light Magic was nearing 10, which was where many full-fledged priests were at. Also, about half a year ago, I earned Amerata Lv1. So it ultimately took me a year and a half to get it.
What I wanted to check now, was the Night Vision skill that had recently gone up. This had happened as I started to participate in the night watch with the defense team. Right now, it would be the skill I relied on the most.
After preparing everything, I headed to the gate. Two of the defense members were already waiting by the fire. They were carrying spears.
“Have you found them?”
“Oh! It’s Ajifu. That’s a relief. We still haven’t found Yutere or Kejide… But there were footprints near the river. They must have gone upstream into the forest.”
Footprints along the river… That was bad news. Normally, I would not go into the forest at night, but I had no choice now.
“Fine. I’ll follow them.”
“Aye, we’re counting on you.”
I went out the gate and around the fence that surrounded the village, and then made my way towards the river that flowed from the north. Soon enough, I reached the edge of the forest.
A blue crescent moon floated in the sky. Hardly any light reached the ominously dark forest.
With Lv2 Night Vision, it was just a little darker than a full moon night. However, there were no dark shadows like the ones that would be cast by a fool moon. So I could see decently. At least, I had no trouble making my way through the trees.
After some time, I saw two torches up ahead near the river.
I blew my whistle and approached. The two defense members saw me and raised their torches. I waved back.
“It’s Ajifu. I came to help.”
I did not want to be mistaken for a monster, but I didn’t want to shout either. So I called when I was a little closer. And then I noticed a small figure next to them.
“Oh! Mr. Ajifu. Thank you. We have good news and bad news.”
That was obvious. I had met the little boy in the fields many times. It was Kejide. I think he was about ten.
“Kejide. You’re alright. What a relief. So…what happened to Yutere?
He would probably be scolded once he returned. But that was not my role. Besides, there were more important matters.
“That’s the bad news. Yutere was taken by goblins.”
Explained one of the men. That was the bad news. And it was worse than I was expecting. However, we had already dealt with all of the goblin settlements near the village. And so I had no idea where they could be. Had we missed one…
“I see. We don’t have much time then. Kejide. Do you know what direction they went in?”
“Well, you see…”
“Over there! I chased them to the nest! I know where it is, so take me with you!”
I looked in the direction that he pointed in and nodded. The north. Indeed, I did not go in that direction very often, so if I missed one, it would be there.
“He’s been saying that. What will you do, Mr. Ajifu?”
While it was good that he knew the place, it was incredibly dangerous to have gone out and chased goblins.
“Fine. Kejide, take me to the goblin settlement. One of you, come with us so you can protect Kejide. The other should go back and alert the village. Mezerir as well, just in case.”
While it did not feel right, we had no choice but to rely on him. I also told them to contact Mezerir, as we would be going very close to the elf forest.
With Kejide and the other defense member…Hilit, we advanced through the forest. I was prepared to be ambushed by monsters at any moment, but could not sense any around us. Perhaps it was because this was the goblins’ territory. Monsters usually stayed away from each other.
That being said, the farther north you went, the stronger the monsters tended to be. So we could not lower our guard.
Kejide said as he carried a torch. But it was hard to be fast while staying wary of your surroundings. But I also understood why he was in a rush.
“Kijide. The forest is extra dangerous at night. You must stay calm.”
I said as we quickened the pace. He then led us to a path that had been used by the goblins. As they walked on two legs and used tools, they had cut down branches and trees to make it easier. Of course, it also meant we would be easier to see, but time was our greatest priority now.
We continued through the dark forest in the moonlight. It was probably much harder for the other two, who did not have Night Vision, but they were able to manage.
“If we keep following this path, we should reach it soon.”
And so we moved off of the path and put out our torches. We did not want to attract attention while getting close. However, you could not walk in the forest without a torch. And so I stopped and turned to the other two.
“I’m going to go and take a look. I won’t be long, so wait here.”
I continued through the forest, parallel to the path until I saw something like a crude fence in front of me.
There were two goblins standing watch near a fire. And behind them, there was a small hill, and a hole for an entrance.