Chapter 477: Various Shades of Red

After returning to the encampment, Vahn dropped off the girls before making his way and reporting to Finn. Even if he wasn’t fond of the Pallum these days, Vahn wasn’t going to neglect his duties since he was an entrusted decision maker within the expedition itself. He had made a good impression on most of the Adventurers thus far, but that could change simply based on rumors that could circulate around the canteen during meals. There was already a bit of tension that had been created as a result of Lili’s ‘outburst’, but it hadn’t gotten out of control as Finn himself explained to several people that he was at fault and had upset her. As Lili was almost like the mascot of the expedition presently, since people knew she was still young yet fought so ferociously, they still had an appreciation for her presence.

Other than some missions having been completed, there was nothing new from Finn’s side either so Vahn returned to his tent and spent the rest of the evening playing around, this time pampering and being pampered himself. Because he was still a Vanargandr, though decidedly less dangerous than Fenrir, Tiona and Ais had been ‘triggered’ by his appearance and Vahn found himself on the receiving end of a brush as he also combed through Fenrir’s and Lili’s hair. Fenrir didn’t seem too fond of Lili ‘copying’ her still, but she let it slide since she likened the fact that Vahn was still transformed to her presence as well. If Fenrir could keep Vahn like he currently was, she felt like she would be able to tolerate ‘almost’ anything.

During bedtime, Vahn found himself being practically smothered by Tiona, Ais, Fenrir, and Lili. Since they had their own tasks to take care of, the majority of the girls in the Loki Familia weren’t easily able to venture into the Dungeon with him presently so they wanted to ‘recharge’ while they had the opportunity. Even Tione had gotten a few advantages from him during the bath because Vahn hadn’t really made any efforts to stop her. The only ‘exceptions’ within the group were Lefiya, who was behaving as her usual bashful self, and Mikoto, who had spent several hours before going to bed training with her new katana before taking a bath alone…

Early morning of the next day, Vahn spent a bit of effort extricating himself from Tiona and Ais before peeling Lili’s body away from him and preparing to escape the sleeping area. Along the way, however, Vahn stopped near the dozing Lefiya and placed his palm against her forehead to awaken her. The previous night, they had been discussing the progress of the other girls and Lefiya’s own had been brought up. As she had a flame seed in her chest, Lefiya’s potential had increased a fair amount and she stood to benefit greatly from Vahn’s [Mentor] Development Ability.

Lefiya had a loose expression on her face as if she were thinking about a ‘happy’ dream so Vahn felt a little guilty about breaking her out of it. As for Lefiya, she had been enjoying some quality time with Ais in her personal world before she felt a very comfortable yet invigorating warmth spread through her head. The rosy atmosphere vanished in an instant only to be replaced by a giddiness when she opened her eyes and saw Vahn’s apologetic smile as he looked down into her face. She felt a tremble run through her body as a hot sensation emerged from her cheeks and started to spread down her neck. It felt like her ears were on fire as she instinctually hid her face with her hands in an attempt to hide from Vahn’s ‘stupidly handsome’ face.

After Lefiya came to her senses, she began preparing for the day, which included the simple task of wearing her somewhat cute pink magic outfit. Lefiya’s combat ensemble consisted of a white blouse, pink skirt, white stockings with accompanying garter belt, and pale-pink corset that made her already thin figure look even slimmer. The corset extended all the way past her hips in a somewhat loose manner and there was an even lighter-pink three-piece coattail-like attachment that hung down to Lefiya’s calves but was entirely open in the front. To accent the outfit, she wore a purple bow around her neck with a pink shoulder mantle that matched the color of her skirt.

Though she used to wield beautiful staff known as [Forest’s Teardrop], Lefiya had taken to using the [Heal] staff that Vahn had given her in the past. It also had the ability to efficiently amplify her magic, just like her old staff, but also had the inherent ability to heal the wounds of others without requiring a chant. As for the other changes in her appearance, at least since associating with Vahn, Lefiya had two small orichalcum rings on her middle-fingers as well as a pair of earrings that Vahn had forged for her in an attempt to create more accessories that could serve as mana batteries. This was actually the first time Vahn saw her wearing them because she had commented about how strange it felt to feel mana flowing through her ears in the past. It was also very uncommon for Elves to wear earrings, as their ears were sensitive and it irritated them greatly, but Vahn’s were the type that clung to the ears instead of piercing it.

While Lefiya had been preparing herself, Vahn was doing the same thing as his previous stints with the other girls the previous days. Though she was fond of it, Vahn knew that [Heal] wasn’t actually that powerful a weapon and he was considering getting her something more practical. However, he was a bit conflicted because Lefiya’s actual power output made her capable of instantly killing the majority of monsters. Her only major weakness was her ridiculously low physical parameters and the fact that her chants could be disrupted since her proficiency with [Concurrent Chanting] was lacking. Even though she had been learning from Riveria and the highly-proficient Ryuu, she wasn’t quite at the level for actual combat yet. This meant that Lefiya required the protection of others or she could easily be killed by almost any stray monster…

As he had seen several examples of ‘Magic’ items that had powerful effects without requiring any chants, Vahn knew it should be easy to find her something that could increase her offensive capabilities without the restrictions of her magic system. Using his ‘trusted’ gacha function, Vahn designated the search terms as ‘Magical-Staff’, ‘Cute’, and ‘Efficient’ since he wanted something that accented Lefiya’s ‘adorable’ factor that would also serve her well in actual combat. Thus, after feeding another 100,000OP into the system, Vahn got several misses with the best among them being a pale red…

Vahn experienced an eerie feeling of loss after looking at the seven grey orbs, three white, and a single pale red. This was the first time he had ‘failed’ to use the gacha system and it made him feel like he had made a mistake in the search parameters. However, as there was a functionally infinite number of items that should match the search conditions, Vahn believed in himself and fed an additional 100,000OP into the gacha. He had experienced a huge windfall with Mikoto’s sword technique so he didn’t mind failing a few times if necessary. Fortunately, The Path seemed to be paying attention now and Vahn received a leafy green orb and a pale blue one this time around.

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After cracking them open, Vahn saw the two staves and his eyes opened slightly wider in the real world when he saw the appearance of the one that emerged from the pale blue orb. It looked like a small wand adorned with a large star on the end and tiny angel wings poking out of the side. It certainly matched the theme ‘cute’, and Vahn thought it was actually suitable to the somewhat petite and adorable Lefiya. However, as it was the lower rarity of the two items, Vahn set it aside for the time being and turned his attention to the inarguably more powerful staff. What appeared was a beautiful wooden staff that twisted around at the end before blooming into what looked like a giant white tulip with a pink center and golden tips. Respectively, the staves were named [Mirakurun Magic Wand] and [Miki’s Tulip] with equal A-Ranks, but decidedly different stats…

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[Mirakurun Magic Wand]

Rank: A (Magic)

Slots: 0

P.Atk: 0

M.Atk: 0

Abilities: Magical Transformation(A), Indestructible(A)

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A wand that can even turn a normal girl into a magical girl. Greatly amplifies the magical capabilities of the user and allows them to freely manipulate the wand into a variety of shapes. Rumored to be powered by emotions, but it was never specified whether they had to be positive or negative~!

Restrictions: Contract(unbound)

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[Miki’s Tulip]

Rank: A (Magic)

Slots: 0

P.Atk: 80+8

M.Atk: 1400

Abilities: Radiant Lancer(C), Ex Healing(A), Magical Amplification(A)

A staff once wielded by a petite, adorable, incredibly kind, and voracious gourmand rumored to have a stomach that rivaled a black hole. Legends state that she was even capable of devouring everything listed on a restaurant’s menu in a single sitting. Rumored to have been banned from more than 9,000 buffets over the course of her lifetime. This staff allows the user to wield powerful magic to aid their allies, but be warned as the spirit of the young woman is retained in the staff…

Restrictions: Gourmand(S)

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Seeing the descriptions of the two items, Vahn was very impressed by the [Miki’s Tulip] while he was intrigued by the [Mirakurun Magic Wand]. He was curious what a ‘Magical Transformation’ entailed and the influence it would have on the weilder. Since the wand had 0 Magic Attack, Vahn couldn’t help but assume that the ability was a very powerful one, especially if the description was accurate. The only thing he was worried about was the ‘contract’ listed in the restrictions and the small warning contained in the last sentence…

However, even the beautiful flowery staff had a pretty big restriction since the weilder would likely experience something similar to Fenrir’s ‘hunger’. Just imagining the petite Lefiya munching away at food…actually brought a smile to Vahn’s face. She wasn’t a big eater at all and he thought it would be somewhat funny to see her clearing away an entire table on her own without gaining any weight. It also had two active abilities, ‘Radiant Lancer’ and ‘Ex Healing’ that seemed very suitable for Lefiya. Active effects on items typically only required the intent to use them and there wasn’t anything like a chant attached to the item. It would likely greatly increase Lefiya’s potential in combat while also serving to enhance her other magics as it also had the Magical Amplification ability.

Vahn decided to give Lefiya the [Miki’s Tulip] instead of the [Mirakurun Magic Wand] because it seemed like the more useful of the two. As for the wand itself, Vahn decided he would let Tiona give it a try in the future since it said it could even make a ‘normal’ girl into a ‘magical’ girl. Vahn had actually wanted to study Tiona’s unique constitution in the past since he was very curious about the [Magic Devouring King] sealed Innate. If it was even capable of consuming the magical power of the wand, Vahn would at least have a better idea of how to help her awaken it in the future. He imagined that Tiona might one day be the bane of all mages since it seemed like her body was capable of absorbing massive quantities of mana, even though he couldn’t see where it disappeared to.

When Lefiya had finished readying herself, she turned to Vahn was a light blush on her face and said, “T-Thank you for waiting, V-Vahn…” This would be the first time she accompanied Vahn into the Dungeon and, even though it was to hunt monsters, Lefiya couldn’t help but shake the feeling they would be going on a date together. She also knew he would likely be closely guarding her for the entire duration and it felt like her heart was going to explode in her chest just thinking about spending the next few hours at his side, especially knowing that he would be helping ‘replenish’ her mana when she was tired. Though he usually placed his palm on her back, Lefiya knew the most ‘efficient’ method was through the navel and it made her stomach giddy imagining his wide palm against her bare stomach as he…

Lefiya had been getting lost in her own little world while ignoring his calls so Vahn pulled out the [Miki’s Tulip] and presented it to her while saying, “Here, Lefiya, this is a powerful magic staff that will greatly enhance your current capabilities. It is almost of the same quality as Riveria’s [Magna Alfs], but has a few unique abilities associated with it that make it better in some aspects…” Lefiya startled when Vahn pulled the staff out of thin air before hanging her head with a fierce blush on her face as she reached out and accepted the staff while saying, “I-I’m so sorry, Vahn! Thank you for the new staff, it is very beautiful!” At this point, Lefiya’s face was red enough to rival Fenrir’s scarlet eyes and Vahn was beginning to worry if things were going to be a bit problematic when they were in the Dungeon.

Vahn spent a few minutes explaining the functions of the [Miki’s Staff] to Lefiya and she finally returned to normal when he mentioned the abilities ‘Radiant Lancer’ and ‘Ex Healing’. Lefiya was a magic prodigy who often got carried away in her studies and research so she was especially interested in new magical abilities, even more so when they didn’t require a chant. However, not long after Vahn had started his explanation, Lefiya’s stomach released a loud protest that made the bashful Elf’s eyes widen into saucers before her face turned beet red. They had yet to eat breakfast and Lefiya had been a little hungry, though she hadn’t expected to be so hungry her stomach rumbled right in front of Vahn. She felt so embarrassed that she didn’t even know how to make an excuse and just hid her face with her hands to an effort to calm her heart.

When he heard the loud protest from Lefiya’s stomach, Vahn had to desperately resist the impulse to laugh but he couldn’t stop a smile from appearing on his face as his cheeks were touched with a little heat. Seeing her reaction made him feel a little guilty at the same time, however, so Vahn explained, “Because the staff is so powerful, there is a bit of a detriment to it as well. I’m not sure if it makes the user hungry, but it should increase your appetite and food consumption by a great deal. Please let me know if there is any discomfort in the future, Lefiya…” Hearing Vahn’s explanation, Lefiya felt a bit of relief while several questions appeared in her mind. She was curious about how a magic staff could make someone hungry since she didn’t feel any different and there wasn’t any energy flowing from the staff into her body…

Vahn was about to mention eating on the way to the entrance into the 51st floor, but Sis’s voice sounded out in his mind as she reminded, (*Vahn, don’t forget that you need to update Lefiya’s Status Board before you leave. I don’t think she would be too fond of having to undress in the middle of a forest with just you and Fenrir present.*) Hearing Sis’s voice, Vahn was momentarily stunned before he thanked her for her reminder. Ever since he had asked her to keep track of ‘important’ things for him, Sis had often reminded him of things he overlooked. He had a propensity of getting caught up in the things he was focused on so it was very helpful to have someone watching over him all the time.

Though he knew it would probably cause the small Elf to fluster, Vahn said in a calm and casual manner, “We’ll eat breakfast before we leave…ah, I almost forgot about this, but I’ll need to update your Status Board before and after the excursion. I’m very concerned with your growth, so I’d like to document it properly to ensure you’re…” Vahn realized his faux pas almost immediately after it left his mouth as it caused Lefiya to turn into a beet-red statue before she drooped down to the ground as if her soul had left her body. Though he was worried about her ‘growth’, it was the development of her parameters and not her body that he was concerned about. However, he hadn’t properly considered his words before speaking so he once again triggered the bashful Elf, this time to the point where she was moderately overwhelmed.

From his side, Fenrir looked at the fallen Lefiya and remarked, “Lefiya is a strange creature…” as she tilted her head to the side in confusion. She could see that her Master enjoyed Lefiya’s reactions, but was also troubled by them at the same time. Fenrir didn’t know if she should try to act like Lefiya in the future, or if she should avoid behaving in a similar manner so as not to trouble her Master. She began to consider if there was a ‘healthy’ balance between the two that would allow her to get an edge, but it was so difficult to tell since all of Lefiya’s behaviors were a little extreme. Fenrir knew she liked her Master, or else she wouldn’t have made space for her in the bed previously, so she couldn’t understand why Lefiya always turned into a tomato whenever she interacted with Vahn. The only thing she was certain of was that Lefiya was a ‘strange’ girl that she would probably have to protect in the future…

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