Chapter 340 - Unknown Land (1)

    Chapter 340 - Unknown Land (1)

    This was the southernmost part of the Central Continent, the border of the Soldun Kingdom.


    There was a flash of light, and the shadows of a few people appeared on the ground. It was Mass Teleport. The traces of spatial magic soon disappeared.

    From the capital of Meltor to the southern border of the Soldun Kingdom, Theodore and his group didn't make a single stop as they jumped nearly half the continent. They couldn't freely go back and forth like a space door, but one-time space movement was enough if Theodore used the auxiliary facilities of the magic towers.

    It wasn't impossible for him to move to the East Continent beyond the sea if he was willing.

    'I'll have to work a bit harder when I get back, but... isn't this much faster?'

    Magic was truly convenient. A distance that would take a few months by foot or a month by carriage had been crossed in just a few minutes. In the Age of Mythology, space gates that connected the whole continent had existed. However, magicians who could use space movement like floating clouds in this era were rare.

    Theodore stopped thinking about that matter and looked around. "...What are the conditions of those two?"

    Magicians still hadn't resolved the difficulties of space magic. The further the distance traveled with space movement, the stronger the symptoms of nausea and dizziness would be.

    "Uup, uuuup!"

    "How terrible. You gave us a warning, but... Ugh."

    Randolph was still half nauseous as he shook his head, while Titania took deep breaths with a pale face. In particular, she had a high mana resistance as a high elf, so she couldn't calm down. Theodore saw her failing to get up and spoke like he understood everything, "Don't overdo it and just sit. Space nausea isn't something that can be recovered with magic or potions."

    It was as he said. As such, Orta had even tried to apply it as part of his attack magic. Unlike normal nausea which was caused by equilibrium confusion, spatial nausea was caused by the body's sense of dimension. It was confusion caused by entering another dimension momentarily, inducing an 'inexplicable sensation.'

    Although Theodore, the caster, had tried to ease the difficulty of the effects, this space nausea could distort even a master's senses. Still, the recovery of the masters was quick. After vomiting out a few gastric juices, Theodore, Randolph, and Titania recovered their balance. Theodore looked at the gaits of the two people and nodded, knowing that they had returned to their original conditions.

    "Let's check the equipment a final time and move south. There won't be much time to rest after entering the swamp."

    Randolph and Titania once again confirmed the goods they had received at the magic tower. There were several magic scrolls to deal with special situations, as well as detox potions for the poisonous swamp zones.

    Randolph couldn't help letting out a long whistle as he saw the artifacts worth thousands of gold. "Can't I buy a mansion or city if I sell all the artifacts on my body?"

    Theodore laughed at the joking words. "What if you combine two people? You can buy at least three territories on the outskirts."

    "Yes, really."

    It was meant as a joke, but it was half true. Randolph felt burdened by the value of all the artifacts he carried on his body. He might've become a noble, but at the core, he was still a mercenary who knew the weight of gold. Randolph automatically stiffened and changed the subject, "Cough. By the way, I didn't think it would just be the three of us. I thought you would bring that older sister or the little girl."

    "...Then the power of Meltor would be reduced by more than half."

    The yellow tower master, Paragranum, didn't reveal her strength or identity. Therefore, Meltor's defenses depended entirely on the other tower masters. It would be foolish to attack Meltor, that had a non-aggression treaty with the Andras Kingdom and was an ally of Elvenheim, but preparing for the worst was a magician's instincts.

    However, this wasn't Randolph's point.

    "Hrmm, I thought that sister was going to follow you anyway."


    "No, it's nothing. It would be awkward for anyone to interfere. You will realize it when the time comes."

    "...?" Theodore stared at Randolph.

    However, Randolph turned his head like he wouldn't speak anymore. All this while, Titania was listening to their conversation with a strange expression. Then Theodore realized that time was being wasted. "Let's go to the swamp. There are no monsters around here, so it should take less than an hour."

    "Okay, let's go."

    "I hope the stench of the swamp isn't too bad."

    All three people kicked off from the ground almost simultaneously. The three shadows moved toward the unknown swamp that no one had stepped in for a thousand years.

    *     *     *

    The party soon arrived. As Theodore had expected, they were able to arrive at the entrance to the swamp in 30 minutes. This was their first encounter with the notorious swamp.

    'Indeed, this place is worrisome.'

    In general, green was the color of life. However, no vitality could be felt from the green swamp. If Theodore had to describe it, he would call it rotten. With rot and decay, this place had become a poisonous land. Normal creatures could never survive in this swamp. Poison was being emitted from each piece of grass and falling leaf. The only living creatures inside would be monsters.

    "...A-A terrible place like this actually exists!" Titania shuddered at the sight, despite being a high elf who should be friendly to nature.

    The blooming buds, leaves, and branches were filled with poison. This was a world where bees and butterflies couldn't survive. How could this swamp have existed for thousands of years? Theodore had doubts and called out, "Mitra, can you come out for a second?"

    The girl sprang out from the ground as usual. [Hoing! Today is Mitra!]

    "Yes, yes, good job."

    Mitra finished with a Y-shaped pose and looked up at him with an elated expression. He didn't know what it meant, but she was always like this. Theodore stroked Mitra's head and pointed in the direction of the swamp. If they could open the way with her power, the swamp exploration would be much simpler than he thought.

    "Mitra, can you control the plants in the swamp?"

    [Eung? I'll try,] Mitra said. Then she walked to the entrance of the swamp and called out, [Hooing? Hoing. Ohunghung. Hoit? Hoooooi?]

    She spoke in unknown words and sign language before making a confused expression. It was an unusual expression on her innocent face.

    [Theo! Them guys are kinda weird!]


    [It doesn't make sense! I can't understand what they are saying. It is like we are speaking different languages!]

    Indeed, Theodore nodded. The southern swamp area was a place where this material world and other dimensional worlds overlapped, and there were several places where ominous energy remained. If mana overflowed from it, then that meant the vegetation was already not part of this material world.

    It was understandable that Mitra's power didn't work. After all, she couldn't intervene in the nature of another dimension.

    "Thank you. Then I'll see you later."

    [Hoing!] Mitra returned to the ground.

    Then Theodore spoke to the party, "It can't be helped. Let's go inside."

    It was impossible to investigate from outside, so the only way was to enter. If three masters couldn't make it through this smelly and foggy space, it would be impossible for anyone else in this era. Titania's response was a little late, but the party unanimously stepped into the swamp.

    Squish... Squish... It was sticky.

    However, it was fine when Theodore hardened the surface with ice magic. Though, he would rather burn it with fire. If he were Veronica, he would've done it without hesitation. Thinking of that, Theodore laughed and then looked around. The swamp was uncomfortable and sticky. It was a place that didn't have anything pleasant at all.

    'Will monsters be present at the entrance of the swamp? Or...'

    The monsters living on the outskirts of the swamp might've been killed by Soldun. Theodore couldn't be sure as he continued walking cautiously through the mysterious swamp.

    One step, two steps, ten steps, one hundred steps...

    After walking quite deeply into the swamp, Theodore suddenly stopped. So far, he hadn't seen any monsters.

    "Too strange," Theodore said. The two people following him naturally stopped and listened as he continued to mutter, "There is no crying, no trace of monsters, no sense of resistance. Surely not all the monsters in this swamp have gone to Soldun...?"



    "I want to correct one thing."

    Theodore looked back at Randolph and realized Randolph and Titania were soaked in sweat.

    "Do you feel it? I'm enduring it somehow, but if I relax even a little bit, I will step back," Randolph said.

    "What are you feeling?"

    "It is a feeling that I shouldn't approach... It is hard to describe in words. In any case, my feet won't go forward. It's similar for this girl."

    Titania confirmed it with a tired face. "The elementals are about to leave me. It doesn't have much effect on Geros, but the other elementals are afraid."

    "...I see." Theodore guessed the reason for their words. If this reluctance was due to Dragon Fear, then Theodore might be immune to that effect due to Aquilo's blood inside him. Therefore, he didn't feel the resistance.

    'I have to pay careful attention to their condition.'

    It wasn't comparable to a direct attack, but the mental strength of the party would continue to suffer unless Dragon Fear was cut off. The consumption of mental power was a big variable on the battlefield. If Theodore made a reckless judgment when accompanied by Randolph and Titania, both of them could be significantly hurt or killed.

    Above all, there was a bigger problem than their condition.

    "From now on, pay attention."


    "What does that mean?"

    Randolph and Titania asked in uncomfortable tones. Meanwhile, Theodore stared at the swamp hidden by a fog. "Maybe in the future, only monsters who can survive this rejection will remain."

    The monsters who could resist Dragon Fear were real monsters in this swamp area. There was no need for Theodore to explain any more as the shaking could be heard from far away.

    Kung! Kung! The earth shook. The three people noticed that the shaking was moving closer. If it was a monster that weighed this much, there wouldn't be more than 10 types found in Theodore's mental encyclopedia. Unsurprisingly, the monster appeared in a dignified manner.

    "Cyclops! They shouldn't be living in swamps!" The astonished Titania shouted.

    Meanwhile, Theodore noticed something strange ahead of her. Unlike the usual cyclops, this one had bright skin and a blazing red eye. However, the red eye wasn't due to strong emotions. Theodore sensed something and paused. "...Magic eye?"

    The moment he stopped moving...

    Wiiiiiiing! The cyclops' eye burned like lava as a ray of light shot out from it.
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