LSP – Chapter 10 – Hobgoblin


Akari silently followed behind the siblings as they ventured deeper into the forest. As an elf, it was in her racial nature to move swiftly and quietly within the woods. With the added blessing of <stealth>, Akari was practically like a ghost within the forest.

The siblings were a curious pair. According to the story of their parents, the younger sister possessed the blessing of <healing>. Not to mention the blessing of the <Protection> spell cast earlier. The appraisal result of being Level 3 should be accurate. However, Shari was just a 13-year-old girl who appeared much smaller than her actual level. How did she manage to raise her level?

And then there is the older brother. It’s strange that he is only at Level 1 if they have been hunting goblins together as siblings. Levels tend to increase more easily at lower levels. Moreover, it’s clear from their hunting skills that the older brother is more experienced. Although, he might be easy prey when it comes to seduction attempts.

The siblings have stopped and decided to turn back. It seems that something is off about the forest. There is no presence of living creatures. The older brother takes his sister’s hand… and starts running ahead. But that direction leads deeper into the forest!

I hurriedly follow behind the siblings. The forest feels dark. There is no dappled sunlight as if it were nighttime. It’s morning now, and it should be a sunny day. It’s unnaturally dark. And as commonly described in many fantasies, elves have excellent night vision. It’s strange for the forest to appear so dark to an elf.

“Onii-chan!” (Shari)

A scream echoes through the forest. Up ahead, the siblings are trapped, seemingly buried in the ground! The ground they were standing on was an illusion. There’s a gaping hole, leaving an empty void in its place.

The eerie darkness of the forest fades away, returning to its natural brightness.

“Gweh… Gweh… Gweh”… (Goblins)

Several goblins have gathered around the hole, each holding rocks in their hands.

I walk with Shari through the forest. Today, we can’t seem to find any goblins. I decide to venture a little deeper into the woods. Despite the lack of presence of small animals, I still thought there might be goblins around.

Before I realize it, we find ourselves in a dark part of the forest. I hadn’t intended to go this far… I stop and turn to Shari to speak.

“Something feels off. Let’s go back.” (Finn)

“Okay.” (Shari)

I turn back and shout towards the rear.

“Akari, let’s head back!” (Finn)

I can’t see where Akari is. Did I lose sight of her? We need to go back.

Growing more anxious, I start to pick up the pace, almost breaking into a jog. Did we pass through here before? This should be a familiar forest that I have traversed multiple times. The more I try to go back, the deeper we seem to be venturing into it.

“Onii-chan!” (Shari)

Out of nowhere, Shari grabs my hand. I turn around, but my momentum causes me to take one more step forward. My foot meets nothing but air. I lose my balance, and Shari tries to catch me, but we both end up falling.

“It’s a trap?! (Finn)

“Gweh… Gweh… Gweh… Gweh… Gweh… Gweh… Gweh…” (Goblins)

The sounds of goblins surround us.

Akari contemplates the situation. With this number of goblins, she could likely deal with them using offensive magic. She could unleash a barrage of her neutral magic spell, “Magic Missile.”

“However…” (Akari)

The goblins in this world are like fairies. Not just any fairies, but malevolent1 ones. They deceive and lure travelers, ultimately devouring them. However, the goblins present here seem to be nothing more than mischievous fairies. They lack the intelligence to set up such an elaborate trap.

I look around their surroundings and spot something.

Hidden in the shadows of the trees is a goblin adorned with tattoos all over its body and decorated with feathers and bones. It stands out from the other goblins, larger in size, and holds a staff in its hand. That is the Goblin Shaman, a spellcaster who specializes in casting illusions and luring opponents into traps. Its mastery of illusion magic rivals even Akari’s own abilities.

Standing behind the Goblin Shaman is a figure about the size of a human, clad in leather armor and wielding a sword. At first glance, they appear to be human, but their unmistakable face reveals them to be a goblin. Using the Appraisal skill, it becomes apparent that their strength is comparable to a level 3. That is a Hobgoblin!

Goblin Shaman and Hobgoblin are formidable opponents. Dealing with either one of them alone would be challenging enough, but facing them both simultaneously is a heavy burden. In addition to these two, there are 10 regular Goblins. Normally, this would be a situation where fleeing is the wisest choice. With Akari’s skills, they could easily escape from the forest. However…

I wonder if the Onii-chan will be okay…

I contemplate the situation. The protection enchantment is active on the siblings. Even if the Goblins throw rocks, as long as they can withstand that, it will come down to a physical battle with the Goblins. With the two of them together, they might be able to handle it. However, the Shaman and the Hobgoblin are formidable opponents. I need to take care of them myself.

“Show me what you can do, Onii-chan!” (Akari)

Her little sister is at Level 3, so she should be able to handle herself. The rule of thumb is to take down the spellcaster first, so I will at least help with that. I focused on the Shaman and unleash a barrage of Magic Missiles at him.

“It’s a pit!” (Finn)

Now that I think about it, the goblins seem to be more civilized than me. No, now is not the time to be thinking about such things.

I don’t have my spear with me. It seems to have fallen outside the pit. The depth of the pit is about 1.5 meters. If I jump, I should be able to see my surroundings.

Goblins from all around were closing in, each of them holding rocks as big as their heads.

And then, the rocks came raining down. I held Shari close, shielding her from the impact.

・・

The goblins, after tossing rocks into the hole, cautiously peered inside. They clung to the edge of the hole and extended their hands from below. Using my ability to sense their presence, I located the goblins and dragged two of them back into the hole.

Attack boost!” (Shari)

Shari, using her level advantage, pinned down the goblins, and with the added boost to my attack power, I crushed the goblins’ heads with rocks. It was a well-coordinated combination attack. “Crack!” I heard the sound of bones breaking echo twice.

Without wasting any time, we swiftly dragged the next two goblins into the hole. Black smoke rose from the pit.

The remaining goblins seemed to have been intimidated or frightened, as they withdrew and hid away.

When I used my <Presence Detection>, I found the location of the goblins. They did not escape; they were lurking nearby, observing the situation. What should I do?

The depth of the hole is about the same as my height. However, I can’t see the goblins from my current position…

I grip the rock thrown in my hands. It is about the size of a goblin’s head, roughly the size of a handball. I swing it overhead, relying on my <Presence Detection> to aim, and throw it with an overhead shot!

Crack!

It hits. Using <Presence Detection>, I managed to hit down one of them.

Shari hands me the next rock. Onii-chan will do his best. I aim at the presence of the goblins and threw it. This time, I missed. No, it seems like they dodged it. Well, that’s okay. There are plenty of rocks to use. As long as I hit with my enhanced attack power, it will still deal damage.

As I defeat the seventh goblin, a surge of heat wells up from deep within my body. Strength surges through me. I’ve reached Level 2! Excitement fills me.

I placed my hands on the edge of the hole. With Shari’s help, I was pushed up, swiftly emerging from the hole. Shari extended her mace towards me. I grabbed it and lifted Shari up along with it. I looked around… There it is! I see my spear! I swiftly ran and retrieved it. The sensation of invincibility surged within me.

“Gweh?” (Goblins)

Three goblins are looking at me. They don’t have a weapon. How pathetic.

I flash my spear. With a swift motion, I decapitate one of the goblins with the blade of my spear. Without hesitation, I thrust and twist, impaling the next goblin. Two of them turn into black smoke and disappear. Becoming Level 2 really does make a difference in the sharpness of my body.

“Gweh!” The last remaining goblin leaps towards Shari, but Shari who has also applied <Attack Boost> to herself, counters with a swing of her mace. The mace connects directly with the goblin’s head, shattering it into pieces.

・・

“Gmooooooo!” (Hobgoblin)

Just when I thought I had cleared out the goblins, a large figure emerged confidently from behind a tree. It was about the size of a human adult, wearing leather armor and wielding a sword. At first, I thought it was a human, but its face was that of a goblin.

The creature swung its sword at me. I instinctively dodged with my spear. The sword hit the spear, causing it to snap! The feeling of invincibility was gone.

With only the remaining handle of the spear in my hand, I threw it towards the creature’s face, narrowly evading its sword.

“Onii-chan!” (Shari)

Shari intervened, blocking the sword with her mace. They engaged in a close-quarters battle between the mace and the sword. Without a weapon, I couldn’t intervene.

Although not overwhelmingly disadvantaged, Shari was being pushed back due to the height difference and the goblin’s experience in personal combat. The big goblin feinted an attack with its sword and used its legs. Shari took a direct kick, getting blown away and tumbling, but there was no follow-up attack.

“Gwoo?” (Hobgoblin)

Before I knew it, Akari had maneuvered behind the big goblin and thrust her dagger into its back. The big goblin turned towards Akari to fight her.

I rush over to my fallen sister and lift her up in my arms.

“Shari, are you okay?” (Finn)

“Onii-chan, do that… thing again…” (Shari)

Shari’s mouth hangs slightly open as she closes her eyes.

I hold Shari tightly and in one swift motion, I press my lips against hers, covering her entire mouth. Shari’s eyes widen in surprise. I apologize for being rough. I adjust the position of my tongue while trying not to hit her teeth.

I find myself passionately entangling my tongue with Shari’s as she eagerly reciprocates. Our tongues intertwine. Wait, what was I doing again? Right.

Level connection!” (Finn)

A level circuit was formed between Shari and I.

Begin level transfer!” (Finn)

In my arms, Shari wriggles and closes her eyes, enduring the surging power that flows through her. Then, Shari opens her eyes and murmurs, “Give me the mace.” She has a look of satisfaction on her face.

The battle between the big goblin and Akari continues. Akari skillfully evades the attacks, but her dagger falls short of the reach of the goblin’s sword. She is on the defensive, struggling to hold her ground. 

Then, Shari launches an attack. Her mace catches the goblin’s pivot foot, causing it to stumble. Taking advantage of the opportunity, Shari delivers a full swing of her mace, striking the goblin’s side. The big goblin falls to the ground, and Shari slams her mace onto the ground.

The head of the big goblin, caught between the mace and the ground, shatters. We won!

“That was a hobgoblin.” (Akari) 

Akari says while catching her breath. Ah, that explains a lot. It’s definitely bigger than a regular goblin. In light novels, hobgoblins are often portrayed as intermediate-level mini-bosses, right?

“Originally, hobgoblins in D&D were just slightly stronger than goblins, but this one was quite powerful. It seems like the world here is based on D&D-like settings with influences from light novels.” (Akari)

“Stop.” (Finn)

The hobgoblin turns into black smoke and disappears. After the smoke dissipates, the hobgoblin’s sword remains. It seems to be a dropped item.

According to Akari’s explanation, it seems that we had unknowingly entered the illusion magic of a Goblin Shaman.

“So, after I managed to defeat the Goblin Shaman, I was chased by the hobgoblin and ended up circling around before coming back to this point.” (Akari).

“Thank you, Akari!” (Finn)

“So, why were you two embracing each other during the battle?” (Akari)

“Well, that was…” (Finn)

“You can do it to me too, Onii-chan!” (Akari)

Akari smirks and says that with a grin.

Afterwards, we sold the hobgoblin’s sword to the blacksmith and returned the money to Akari. The rest was added to our party’s savings.

――

Finn: Level 1 (Human: Reincarnated)

– Blessings: Level Check, Level Transfer, Presence Detection, Spear, Throwing (new)

Shari: Level 4 (up!) (Human)

– Blessings: Healing (2x effect on Finn), Protection (2x effect duration on Finn), Attack enhancement, Mace (new)

Akari: Level 4 (Elf: Reincarnated)

– Blessings: Appraisal, Elementary Attack Magic, Stealth, Cold Resistance


Image of Shari holding a mace (?)

Then, Shari launches an attack.
~ Link to source


TL notes:

Thanks for reading!

Oh, I was wondering why the Hobgoblin didn’t do anything as Finn started fighting back but it was chasing Akari. Also come on Finn, you know you can’t hide it from Akari much longer.

Edit: I added a gallery for this series, for you guys who forgot which illustration is where or those who just want to see the illustration.


Footnotes:

  1. Malevolent = having or showing a wish to do evil to others.
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