Will I End Up As a Hero or a Demon King - Chapter 3
First Day of Yuto’s Adventure.
Only an hour after I started walking, I was already lost in the forest that resembled a sea of trees.
(Damn, there are only some undulations, and I can’t find any high ground at all…)
For someone like me who doesn’t enjoy the outdoors, this is the first time in my life that I’ve been on a major forest expedition.
As I repeatedly take shallow breaths, I can’t help but blurt out in my mind how tough it is.
The terrain repeatedly rises and falls, the roots of large trees impede walking, and the leaves of shrubs block my view as if they were blocking my way.
Although the objective is to find high ground or a river, wandering around without being able to see a goal is a waste of energy and spirit and is likely to break one’s heart.
I am still thankful that I haven’t encountered any large animals or suspicious creatures, but…
Fortunately, the direct sunlight is blocked by countless leaves on the trees, and it is not extremely hot in this forest.
The temperature is bearable to the extent that I can force myself to wear my oversized suit jacket so that I can at least keep one of my hands free.
However, the seasonal difference from Japan is not that noticeable, and the strong humidity makes me sweat, which runs down my cheeks.
Wary of my surroundings, I walk around, my ears attentively searching for the sound of running water, and then I stop to think.
In my bag I carry a smartphone, a company-issued mobile phone, my wallet, a large notebook, several ballpoint pens including spares, a plastic board, a hand mirror, a business card case, a calculator, a set of seals, and a bunch of contracts and documents in case of emergencies.
There is nothing in there that can change my current situation.
The cell phone is useless, as I have already confirmed that there is no signal.
In addition, a flashlight for work, spare batteries, a Phillips-head screwdriver and a flat-blade screwdriver in my bag.
But it will not matter if I hold them in my hand right now.
The business meeting is scheduled at 2pm in my original world time. Considering my transfer from there and the fact that I’ve been walking for almost an hour since I confirmed my situation…
The sun might have started to set already over there.
I have no idea at this point what kind of cycle this world that I was transferred to goes in a day.
But if there is a possibility of sunset, I have to hurry.
With nothing yet sorted out regarding where I will sleep, water, or fire, the growing anxiety is making me feel even less energetic.
(Calm down, calm down… Kasahara-san taught me that a salesman should always be cool-headed and passionate on the inside, while keeping.)
The relationship with the boss I was working with was not so bad.
His sales performance was excellent, and last year he was promoted to a section manager position despite being the same age as me, probably because I was a new graduate, and he had been with the company for a long time.
For a while, we were both regular employees, and we had a very delicate relationship: at work, we used honorifics, and in private drinking sessions, we spoke to each other as if we were friends…
He was one of the few friends I had who I could talk openly with, and he was also one of the few bosses I could speak openly to.
(It’s long past the appointment time. I’m sure the client has already called the office. I’m sorry, Kasahara-san, but it looks like I won’t be able to come back to the office, and I apologize for causing you trouble…)
While apologizing in my heart to the person I will never see again, I suddenly look at the belt that Kasahara-san has given me as a gift when I am promoted to assistant manager.
A good quality belt, though not outstanding.
[You should care a little! A suit is a salesman’s battle uniform!]
I remember his habit of always saying that.
Unlike cheap ones, the leather doesn’t lose its shape, and I’m quite satisfied with this belt.
I look at the trees beyond my line of sight.
Then I check each for any branch near the ground.
I already tried many times to climb trees, thinking that if I climbed, I could see some of the scene ahead of me.
However, I can reach the lower part of some branches when I jump, so I gave up climbing trees because it is impossible for me to grab hold of them.
This once again made me regret my suggestion, since I am now more than 25 cm shorter than I had ever been before.
(If I use the belt well, I might be able to do it…?)
The tree must be within sight, growing higher, and have abundant branches that can be climbed.
The first branch should be as close to the ground as possible.
Ideally, it will be on a slightly higher elevation!
It will be worth a try.
Before I give up, I will try first.
Muttering this in my mind, I search around for a clear “target” with faster steps than before.
“Haha, I finally found it…”
Finally, I found the tree and terrain that I considered a good ‘target’.
It’s been more than 30 minutes since I made up my mind to start looking for it.
(The ground is roughly 3 meters higher than the others, and the tree is seemingly quite tall. First, the trunk is much thicker than the others.)
While checking my surroundings, I first jump towards a branch to try and reach it.
But, as I have expected, I can’t reach the lower part of the branch.
So first, I need to make it possible to grab the first branch.
First, I am using my Duralumin Case as a foothold.
This should give me an increase in height of about 15 cm.
If I set the bag vertically, I may sprain my foot at worst if I end up in an accident, so I don’t have to go that far.
Needless to say, the sturdiness of the case is its main selling point, so it will not break at all when I, a 13-year-old, stand on it.
I made sure to step on the corner of the bag, to prevent any dents, to maintain the height of the bag.
Then I take off my belt, pick it up, and throw one end of the belt over the branch.
The belt slips through the top of the branch and hangs from either side of the branch.
Now, if I could get a hold of each of the belts on either side, I should be able to climb up the trunk and hang my feet on the foothold!
Once you get that far, it’s just a matter of perseverance.
Now I just have to climb up with my feet parallel to the ground…ugh…without the buckles, my hands are slipping…it’s tough.
But I managed to hang my foot on the branch.
When both of my feet are on the branch, I can hang my hand down and pull up, although it will be hard on my abdominal muscles.
All that I have to do now is to rely on my muscular strength! Full power for the first time in 15 years!
Half an hour later, there is now a man on the verge of exhaustion clinging to the top of a tree looking at the sun that is about to set.
Who is that person? Of course, it was me.
I have by no means climbed to the very top.
It is too high and scary, and the branches are too thin and dangerous, but even without going so far up, I manage to get a 360-degree view of the landscape.
It is the result of persistence and careful selection of large trees, the environment in which it grows, and a difference in elevation.
And what are the results?
The result is a view of a large forest that spreads across the entire field of view like a sea of trees.
There is no town, no plains or grasslands in sight, just an endless expanse of dark green sea.
There is no visible exit from the sea of trees.
It is as if Acorn Head has been trying to kill us from the very beginning.
However, I still can’t believe that Acorn Head is actually trying to kill me from the very beginning.
Despite my hopeless situation, I can’t help but smile.
I am not in despair or out of my mind.
So, what made me feel that way?
There are three reasons.
In the 360-degree panoramic view, I can see a fairly wide range of mountains stretching out in one direction.
Although I cannot grasp how far it is from my vantage point, it seems to be a group of mountains with a considerable elevation.
So, that means.
If I continue on in a direction away from the mountains, there is a good chance that I will reach a human settlement.
Humans like the plains, and this world is probably no different.
It is now easier to confirm a precise orientation.
The setting sun may not be the same as the setting sun on earth, but I can determine the direction using that.
If it is the same as on Earth, even a novice would know that the direction in which it sets is the west.
But there is something else that I noticed while I was frantically climbing up the tree branches.
It is my wristwatch, which is a conversation starter for salesmen.
Although I am not uninterested in brands, I am interested in functionality, so I am using a watch made by a certain Japanese manufacturer.
I now noticed that the wristwatch had a compass function.
I never use this function in my daily life, so it was not surprising.
It is fortunate that I found the wristwatch in my field of view because I am climbing a tree, which is a stance I usually do not take.
Three, I am able to find a slight but lingering gap in the dark-green field of vision.
This can be nothing more than the presence of a river.
If I had been told that it was a fault line, I may have died of shock.
And since the gap extends away from the mountain range, I expect that the river is descending with a slight difference in elevation.
In other words, going down the river will allow me to rehydrate and get closer to the area where people will be living!
There are still many unresolved issues…
I mean, the sun is about to set, and I don’t know how I’m going to sleep tonight…!
Still, it is the first day that I feel as if the future has opened up a little bit.
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