The Hunter and the Mad Scientist - Chapter 7
Instead of a proper answer, a fierce voice came out.
“Oh, aren’t you angry?”
Cedar clicked his tongue.
“I don’t get angry over things like that.”
‘I’m sure you were pretty upset earlier.’
Esperanza clapped her lips. He was definitely angry but it’s not wise to make fun of him now.
“I knew your face, but I didn’t recognize it, did I?”
Oh, he did. He was so sneaky that I didn’t even apologize and forgot. Then I don’t have to apologize either, right?
Esperanza warmed up to get down to business but Cedar clapped his tongue and tilted the teapot to fill her empty teacup.
The cold and bitter tea moistened her tongue and lips and she opened her mouth.
“A year later, dungeons will appear indiscriminately and irregularly. They can appear in the palace, in the back alley, anywhere, and within that realm, monsters will appear to slaughter people. The dungeon disappears when all the people in it die and the monsters have nothing to eat or if it’s completely destroyed.….”
Even though it was a terrible story, Cedar listened to it without blinking and Esperanza added, wrapping a cold teacup in her hand.
“I heard that the item I’m looking for is an item that can completely eliminate dungeons.”
“It’s very abstract.”
“Is that so? Isn’t that specific?”
“How does that thing get rid of dungeons?”
“I don’t know.”
Wouldn’t the developer of the Golden Claw announce the end of the server by the time the game starts to lose money?
‘Wait a minute, is this the time? Am I a sacrifice for subservience?’
It was a pretty plausible idea. After finding the golden claw and closing the dungeon, the game is bound to end.
How much money have I spent on this game so far? What a ridiculous declaration of subservience. Are you kidding me?
“I don’t know what you’re thinking, Esperanza.”
Cedar, who called out her name in a strangely sweet voice, said.
“Think about ‘how’ the dungeon will disappear.”
“Isn’t it just that they won’t show up anymore?”
“On the contrary, what if the whole world becomes a dungeon?”
I never thought of that. “The world where hunters disappeared has become a monster world?” Isn’t it too nasty to leave the world we’ve been together for years?
“That can’t be true. The golden claw isn’t like that. It’s a legendary item that all hunters are looking for.”
“There’s no basis, just speculation.”
Cedar’s thoughts are the same but Esperanza declined to comment.
She couldn’t convince him without revealing that it’s a game but Esperanza had no intention of telling the truth even though Cedar already knew Esperanza’s existence.
It’s very strange to be a woman from 13 years later? Maybe it’s more of a miracle. But isn’t it shaking one’s existence from its roots that this world is just a game? The two are different in weight.
“Either way, it’s the same if I can find it and go back.”
“I mean, it’s weird. Why do you think you have to find it so you can go back? What does the disappearance of the dungeons have to do with you going back?”
“I can see your eyes rolling.”
Esperanza, who was drinking tea, choked and Cedar shook his head and chuckled as he watched her hit her chest.
Esperansa, who had cleared her itchy throat several times, barely spoke in a hoarse voice but it was a crude answer compared to the waiting time.
“Well, there’s a way we hunters know.”
Cedar raised his eyebrow.
“If you can’t explain, don’t.”
“Can I do that?”
“It’s for your good.”
That’s right. I was just asking for advice. Fortunately I seem to have succeeded in attracting his interest.
When he said that I don’t have to say it, I changed my mind instead of asking more questions.
“I don’t know anything about dungeons from the magic engineering approach.”
“I can tell you everything I know.”
“You don’t know anything about magic engineering.”
I know. However, it is impossible to bring Dr. Sullivan, a future magic engineer and dungeon scholar. Dr. Sullivan from 13 years ago can’t be a better magic engineer than the man in front of me.
“Anyway, being a scholar is similar to a detective in that it’s a job to find the truth.”
Is that how it works? Isn’t it different?
Esperanza leaned her head and thought. Of course, the genius magic engineer was not interested in other people’s thoughts.
“If I dig into my work carefully, I think I’ll find something more interesting than ever. I think I’ve even managed to touch the essential thing that makes up the world.”
I suppose so. The core of this world is monsters, dungeons, hunters, and magic engineering.
Esperanza thinks he doesn’t want to get to the point but he’ll know when he gets to the deep end that this world is an illusion, that it was only created for others to play and to make money out of it.
“What should we do now?”
I didn’t expect this answer.
“We need to gather information. My study, library, maybe rumors or legends.”
I suddenly remembered Jack’s information.
There was information even if it’s not about the golden claw. Esperanza laughed with a confident face for the first time in a long time.
[Item: Jack’s note]
Dungeons, monsters, rumors, legends.
Papers of the same name poured out and a pile of notes piled up under my feet to my calves.
Cedar Clyburn muttered, unable to hide his surprised face.
“What the hell is that dirty paper doing in my drawing room…?”
In a completely different direction than Esperanza thought
‘So what about this?’
She took out one more item as I was trapped in the paper and couldn’t move even a step.
[Item: Monster Encyclopedia 7th Edition (Author: Alfred Sullivan)]
“It was Alfred. Alfred Sullivan. Well, you might like it.”
The thick encyclopedia was passed over to Cedar who took it carefully. Unlike when he saw Jack’s note, he shook off the leather cover with a humble gesture.
“Is it okay if I dust the room?”
“I’ll take care of it.”
Cedar’s attitude toward knowledge was pious and he caressed the pages of the book carefully.
The bridge, which had been roughly crossed, was neatly lowered as he read the book slowly as if he was savoring every page.
Cedar Clyburn, who was reading the fifth page, looked up.
“Dr. Sullivan is not an insignificant person.”
“Is that so?”
It seemed the best compliment he could give. Well, he just called him a nobody a while ago.
“I wouldn’t have organized it this way, but it’s inevitable.”
Cedar glanced at Esperanza, who answered in an insincere voice, then returned his gaze to the book.
“Anyway, I think it’s academically valuable. After reading all of this, I think I’ll have a rough idea of what a dungeon is like.”
At least it’s better than the gibberish explanations of a layman like me.
Because I didn’t like to throw things away, the miscellaneous things in my inventory will be of a great help to me now.
How many times did I spend money to increase my inventory capacity?
No, let’s put this aside.
“By the way, what is that?”
“This is a note. It’s written by a newspaper seller named Jack, but he knew a lot of rumors, so I paid him some money for it.”
Rumors are often worthless, but very occasionally, they contain real information that is unknown elsewhere.
Stories that dare not be told through official routes roam underground and in back alleys.
You have to pay an information vendor to buy filtered information, but you can get rumors just by making friends with people in the back alley.
“It’s just a note, so I don’t have much information, but just in case. There were a lot of quests related to the golden claw…….”
“Missions for Hunters like the destruction of dungeons, acting as an escort or transporting items. You might also get caught up in a dungeon in the middle. There are also cases where you participate in events or stand guard.”
“You use a lot of unique terms for a 12-year-old job.”
A prickly Esperanza mumbled, burying her nose in Jack’s note.
“Because it is such a closed community, slang developed a lot.”
In a sense, it’s really closed because the only ones that can be hunters are the players.
“I guess not everyone can be just because they want to, right?”
“……Yes, you need to be qualified. I don’t know exactly what qualifications I have.”
Cedar, who turned over the book by tapping the tip of his chin with his finger, nodded. He didn’t seem to care much about Hunter’s qualifications.
“This monster leather. Is it the leather wrapped around your scythe?”
I went over and checked the book and as our foreheads almost touched, Cedar pulled his body back a little.
“Which one? Oh, that’s right.”
The book was meticulous so I cut a little bit of thick ogre hide and pasted it on but it was possible because it was a limited edition book.
I remember getting it as a reward for completing an episode but I never opened it, so I didn’t know it was described so carefully.
‘But even this is not enough for that man to see.’
How can I meet the limitless eye level of a genius? I have to be self-sufficient.