A staircase of light appeared before us.
Loo and Tier analyzed it.
「This staircase is made of magic. There’s seems to be no trap….ah, it seems like the spiderlings and kuros counts as one too.」
「It seems to be strict with number desu ne.」
「Is it a trick to disperse forces?」
「If that is the case, even if it says that a group of three can climb, there’s a possibility that the stairs will disappear after the three climbed up.」
「That’s right. It would be nice if the staircase will appear again in time but if it’s goal is to make sure that the three that climbed won’t be able to return, it means this is a trap.」
「Tricky desu ne.」
「Maa, we have no choice. We need to try it at least….」
And so, a group of three was chosen to move forward.
I was removed from the first group candidates.
I understand why.
We’ve been working together until now but we’ve promised that I’ll be the last to enter the dungeon.
I can’t go with the first team.
Of course, the children can’t go too.
Since it has come to this….
Would it be safe to send Loo, Tier, and ancestor-san?
When I was thinking so, the kuros barked to appeal.
The spiderlings on their backs are volunteering too.
Seeing them, Gulf, Daga, and the mountain elves volunteered too.
It’s good to be aggressive but we’re in a dangerous place.
No, I’m not saying no….
It was decided with draw lots.
Spiderling, spiderling, spiderling.
Well, yeah, they got the most number so this is not surprising.
Are you okay with it?
You’re so confident.
Okay, got it.
After climbing up, the first thing you need to check is if you can come back.
If you can’t, stay put and wait.
But don’t forget to be flexible.
Don’t be like yesterday where you can’t protect others because I ordered you to not go into the sea.
Safety is your first priority.
Even if you are trapped, I will definitely go and help you so don’t overdo it.
The spiderlings climbed the stairs.
When they managed to climb to a certain height, they were shrouded by light and disappeared.
Or maybe I can’t just see them because of the light?
Or perhaps they were teleported somewhere?
I suddenly became uneasy.
This situation is now beyond what Loo and Tier predicted but the staircase of light is still there.
I suppressed my feeling of wanting to check the spiderlings out and patiently waited for them.
After waiting for a while, the spiderlings did not return so the next group will climb.
The next group will be a kuro, a spiderling, and a spiderling.
Like the previous one, they were absorbed by the light and can’t be seen anymore.
However, unlike before, I heard the kuro’s bark above.
I told it before climbing that once it managed to climb safely, bark to inform us.
I was relieved when I heard the bark.
However, given what happened, I think the order we sent the two groups is wrong.
Unlike the first two groups, other groups climbed one after another without stopping.
Climbing in a group of three…..is it restrictive?
And none comes back so our number is getting smaller and smaller….
It’s almost the children’s turn.
The children’s group, Ursa, Alfred, and Tiselle, was not decided by lottery.
I even wanted to group each of them with two adults but it seems like it will be easier to protect them if they’re in a single group.
The kids started moving before me….
I heard screams.
Given the direction of the scream, it is not from above…..in short, from where we’ve come from.
Did the lamias, who are supposed to bring us food, encountered trouble?
The level of vigilance of those who are still waiting in line increases.
However, three wet high elves appeared before us.
They were a group that climbed up pretty early.
When I asked them what happened, this is what they said.
「The place we arrived at is just right above this place. It’s a big room and those who have gone before us are there waiting.」
「Once you climbed up, the stairs will disappear so you can’t use them to get back.」
「In the room, there is a river that leads to the waterfall that’s hiding the entrance of this place.」
「Even if it is a big room, it is already becoming crowded as other groups go up so Loo-sama decided that we should proceed.」
I have given the leading groups of Loo, Tier, Ria, Gulf, and Daga the right to command.
They know the situation ahead better so I won’t get mad.
「It seems like the group of three that climbed the stairs will be permanently grouped and you won’t be able to go anywhere without each other.」
「There were trials all over the place and we failed in one which made us fall into the river and fall into the waterfall. After that, we get back here.」
In other words, it is possible to come back here after failing?
I’m quite relieved.
So, what are those trials?
「They are the “right path trial” where you’ll need to cross a narrow bridge, the “integrity trial” where you’ll have to avoid flying mud balls, and “hexagon trial” where you’ll enter small rooms after small rooms with several doors desu.」
「I think there should still be more trials but we failed the “hexagon trial”.」
「Hexagon trial’s room are hexagonal and there are doors on all sides.」
「The content of the trial is to open the door and look for the right way desu.」
「You can act individually there but….」
「There’s no floor in one of the room I opened so I fell into the river.」
「The moment one falls, the others will also fall into the river. It seems like whatever happens, the three must be united desu.」
「We could swim in the river but we can’t go upstream. We are being prevented by some sort of barrier.」
「After falling from the waterfall, we were able to go against the current….perhaps if you fail the trial, you’ll be dropped from the waterfall and return to the entrance.」
Then….should I prepare a fire here so that those who’ll fall can warm up?
Air is flowing here so there’s no need to worry about consuming all the oxygen.
Following the three high elves, some kuros and spiderlings also fell from the waterfall and returned.
Ah, don’t be sad.
I’m glad you’re safe.
When I was gathering information from those who fell from the waterfall, my turn has come.
My group mates are none other than Reginleif and ancestor-san.
This is not a result of draw lots but a result of discussion.
Behind my group, aside from those who fell and came back, is a mixed group of a kuro, a spiderling, and a mountain elf.
They will be protectors of the rear and in an unlikely event, call for help. However, since there are a lot who fell from the waterfall, let’s have them take that role.
What about the children?
They should already be in the next area.
Are they waiting up there?
I feel like they won’t wait.
Let’s go after them!