Sub29: If you have trouble imagining how the dungeon structure looks like, you can refer to my drawing (at least this is how I imagine it to be) <Click here to see>
The dungeon construction is progressing very smoothly.
Even Ann’s antlings have increased in number, and thanks to Elibel’s improvements on the drawing mannequin, the speed of trap installation has also improved.
The surface area is almost completed.
In a few more days, we will probably start the full-scale construction of the middle and lower layers.
The original dungeon that will determine my safety.
Oh, Ann and Elibel have already started working on the design of the floors in the deep underground.
If you look now, they are still descending through the crack using ropes made through alchemy.
They must have dug deep.
By the way, I have also descended to lower layers through the crack before, but the purity of the magic stones that can be obtained was hardly any different from the depths.
It seems that the purity of the magic stones reaches its limit around here.
However, the number of magic stones that can be obtained is significantly higher in the lower layers.
When I went down and dug for a few minutes, I obtained a considerable amount of magic stones.
I ate half of the obtained magic stones myself and had the rest carried by the drawing mannequins to everyone in the dungeon and forest monsters as their meal.
I will continue to give them magic stones regularly.
It seems that the joy of the forest monsters is incomparable when they receive them.
Are they really that happy to receive these magic stones?
For me, it’s just like sharing food and side dishes with the neighbors.
Sometimes, in Elibel’s laboratory, I see images projected from the brilliantly colored spheres, and the delight of those creatures while eating the magic stones is truly amazing.
There was even one monkey among them who cried while eating.
Also, that spider sneakily stole two to three of them and brought them back to its nest. I saw that.
That guy is quite strong, huh.
Well, it’s nice to see them happy.
Let’s continue doing that.
As for the excavation of the bottom layer, I have completely entrusted it to the drawing mannequins.
I helped with the digging, but the drawing mannequins are still faster.
Well, that’s only natural.
They are in greater numbers, after all.
If we assume that my digging speed in one hour is a hundred units, the drawing mannequins can probably dig three to five times that amount.
The drawing mannequins outnumber me by a significant margin.
Furthermore, unlike me, they work tirelessly around the clock.
Of course, the excavation speed would be faster.
So, I casually dig for some magic stones, and the rest is all left to the drawing mannequins.
In that case, my tasks would involve activating the drawing mannequins and setting up the teleportation gates.
Additionally, I’ll wander around the dungeon to create magical corridors.
Well, I can work on that concurrently with the installation of the teleportation gates.
In that case…
Naturally, I will have more free time.
The installation of teleportation gates in the middle layers is still a bit further ahead.
We’ve already installed the teleportation gates in the surface layer for the most part.
So now, I’m currently trying out a new hobby.
That hobby is gardening.
The deep parts of the Eld Desert have vertical holes where sunlight reaches.
Ultimately, I plan to fill all the parts facing the holes.
I intend to make the entrance to the Eld Desert a complete vertical hole with a depth of about three hundred meters.
I’ll create a spiral staircase there and make a pathway to descend.
Well, of course, it won’t be just a simple descent.
I plan to add various tricks to the staircase.
Slippery steps or golems emerging from the walls, for example.
Well, let’s leave that aside for now.
Let’s get back to the topic of gardening.
In other words…
If sunlight can reach there, I thought it might be possible to grow plants even in these deep parts.
Why did I think of such a thing?
It’s because I wanted to experience the soothing effect of nature.
The feeling of the air when I visited the Yuguru Great Forest.
The unique scent and the healing properties of the vast forest.
That’s a good idea.
It might be the next thing to provide comfort aside from Tres and Pururu.
After all, the dungeon is originally quite barren.
I previously focused on drawing mannequins and golems because I disliked that aspect.
I thought of creating a forest as one of the special environments within the dungeon.
Mainly for my own healing.
Now, you might think, “Why don’t you just go to a real forest?”
Well, that’s a misunderstanding.
If possible, I prefer not to go outside.
It’s bothersome to go outside…
If I can manage everything from within my home, isn’t that ideal?
That’s why I thought about creating it within the dungeon if possible.
For that, I won’t spare any effort.
Healing is important.
It’s the next priority after meals and self-preservation.
When I consulted with Elibel, she said it was possible.
However, she only said, “…don’t do it, no matter what, understand?”
Even though it’s just planting some plants.
There’s no need to be so cautious.
Well, for now, I thought of trying it out in this deep part as a test.
If it succeeds, I’ll consider gardening in the completed bottom layer in the future.
What I have in front of me are plants brought from the Yuguru Great Forest.
I don’t know the exact species, but they are some kind of plants for now.
I borrowed them from the one growing randomly near the caves in the Yuguru Great Forest.
To ensure they can adapt to the changing environment, I brought small seedlings as much as possible.
I planted them in the sunny area of the deep part and have been nurturing them for three days now.
Truly, plants from another world.
They are growing rapidly.
When I brought them three days ago, they were small seedlings of a few centimeters, but now they have grown into trees nearly two meters tall.
They really do grow, don’t they?
Indeed, having greenery around is soothing.
The dozens of seedlings I planted are also growing well.
It’s like a small park.
There are even moss-like plants growing under the trees.
Hmm, the healing effect of greenery is truly wonderful.
By the way, Elibel has been away for three days now.
She’s heading to the Add Mountain Range to finalize the traps for the dungeon being built there.
She probably won’t return for a few more days.
In other words, I have some free time.
It’s been a while since I’ve had a leisurely vacation.
Well, if anything comes up, I can always communicate with her through thought transmission.
Now then, let’s add a little twist to the gardening.
I’ll try giving the plants crushed magic stones as fertilizer.
The monsters seem to love these magic stones, so maybe they’ll provide good nutrients for the plants too?
Crush the magic stones and sprinkle them everywhere.
Oh, what about water?
Should I ask Una if she can transport water through the teleportation gate?
Lena Wetlands would be a suitable water source.
Let me contact her…
I send a thought transmission to Una.
She replied immediately, saying she’ll take care of it.
But what should I do if I want to create something similar in the bottom layer?
Perhaps by improving the light magic stones, I could use them as a substitute for sunlight?
I could plant them in areas without sunlight and try nurturing them with the light magic stones.
I’ll discuss it with Elibel next time.
And so, I immerse myself in this new hobby.
Oh, of course, I’m still taking care of my other responsibilities too.
After all, it’s just a hobby.
A month later――――
The depths had transformed into a lush “forest.”
Gigantic trees took root in the ground, proudly displaying their presence.
The forest floor, where the trees took root, was teeming with lush foliage, making one forget that this was the bottom of the ground.
Bird-shaped golem homunculi perched on the trees, and real birds seemed to mingle among them.
It was truly heartwarming to behold.
But that’s not all.
The wall surfaces were also covered in abundant foliage.
Some of the trees bore fruits that I had never seen before, ripe and plump.
All of them rooted into the vertical tunnels, growing straight towards the sunlit surface.
Moss grew densely, and the formerly brown depths had transformed into a verdant paradise.
Even the areas without direct sunlight flourished thanks to the effects of the light magic stones.
It was a dramatic and astonishing transformation.
Hmm… It’s a bit… out of place.
『There’s something wrong here.』
With such a dense forest, as a source of healing…
Ah, I see.
That’s when I realized.
『We just need a hot spring!』
「That’s not where your focus should be!」
Elibel’s kick landed on the back of my head.
…Eh… I was… wrong…?
I slumped to the ground.
The forest that was created in the depths can be imagined as a depiction of the “Toxic Jungle in Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind”…