Chapter 30: Library Check In
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Bloodlust was knocked out cold. I guess even without stats, my body is rather strong. As expected of a Rock Golem. Now… there's a slight problem. With Bloodlust knocked out, I can't really progress right now. Bee is also out. She's currently hanging atop one of the trees, still in her giant form. I can't tell if it was from being thrown into the air by Bloodlust's escape from my rock bullets or her still being in meditation mode. Estelle is also still asleep, but that masked hunter of hers is nowhere to be seen. Must've gone back in once the fight ended. This is yet another time I curse this body incapable of rest.

Now that I think about it, this is actually a blessing. I finally have time to go to the Library. Yes! To the Library, I shall go! The Library! I found myself back in the familiar reception area, yet Metis wasn't there to greet me. I looked around, finding no trace of her ghostly self. I also couldn't see the motionless body that was behind the desk either. The two locked doors were still locked, so she couldn't have gone there… hmm… whatever, there are books to be read.

I walked towards the shelves, hoping to grab the first book when I noticed something behind the desk while walking past it. It was the Metis' typically still physical body curled up in a ball on the floor. She also noticed me walking by as she had poked her head out to make eye contact.

Uh… hi. 

"Nice… body…" She tucked her head back into her body. 

Why are you on the floor?

"To be robbed of one's existence is a cruel fate."

What? I don't get it. One's existence?

"Just when I get access to my physical body that I could've used to help you, you get a body yourself. I'm feeling quite useless right now, alongside forgotten."

Well, sorry about forgetting you. As for your uselessness, you can still recommend books to me, right? Surely that's a use.

"The shelves do that if you think about what you want."

Then… uh… can I ask you questions about the Library?

"That…" She immediately sprung to her feet. "You can do. Ask away. I should be able to answer."

Okay, first question. What's behind those two doors?

"..." She returned to her fetal position. "I can't answer that."

Okay, okay, this next question you can answer, surely, definitely. Is there any limit to the Library?

"What do you mean by limit?"

Well, it stores every text made in this world, right?

"Yes, yes it does."

So I'm gonna list down a bunch of written stuff, and can you answer yes or no. Got it?

She perked right up. "Got it!"

Fictional stories? "You should already know. It's implied through the upgrades."

Educational textbooks? "All the way to its earliest editions."

Diaries? "From the writings of an everyday commoner to the most secretive journals of ancient kings."

Tax records? "Yeah, but who would want to read that?"

Destroyed books? "Recreated in their peak condition!"

System notifications? "Surprisingly, yes. Theoretically, you could learn all you want about the System." 

Wait… what? "It's text, isn't it?"

True. I just didn't think it'd count. "Why did you ask about it, then?"

Curious. "Ah, classic you. You rascal. I don't want to call you 'you'. Can I just name you?"

Later, first the questions. "Got it."

Skill scrolls? "They're words written down. They sure can be."

Wait, really? "Just like with the System, it's text, isn't it?"

Hmm… then that can be useful. "They're useless, though."

What? "The Library merely recreates the material a text is made on and what the text is. Nothing outside of that. As such, Skill scrolls don't have the related energy that allows them to give others Skills."

What's the point, then? "Whether the text in its original context doesn't matter. You're going to read it anyway due to your nature."

That's… true. I am more interested in seeing what's written down as opposed to getting the Skill. "I'm glad I know that about you. Want to learn anything about me?"

There is a lot I would like to learn, but later. I am still curious about the Library. "Typically, someone would get sad about a library being prioritised over them. Fortunately for you, I've cried too much today already."

I see. Anyways, as far as I can tell, pretty much any text appears in the Library. Can you think of anything that wouldn't qualify? "Nope. Even scrap pieces of paper with a single word or number written on them are stored here. Parchments with magic circles, broken slabs of stone with primitive writings, blankets with hidden messages knitted into them, even paper golems powered by words infused with magic are stored here. Naturally, the words don't have magic in them, meaning the golems are inert."

Those seemed less and less textlike the more you listed down. "I'm pretty sure when the System Goddess made the Library, instead of text, I'm sure she just made the requirement be 'words'."

That seems rather… idiotic. "Well, she's an idiot with a penchant for slacking."

You've met her? "And you've met the Evil Goddess, so we're even."

Even? For what? "Meeting Goddesses."

Aren't you a Goddess yourself? It's what you said when you introduced yourself, right? "Aww… you remember! I can see this working out after all, even if you forgot to check in for way too long."

Okay then. Glad to see you're back to your chipper self. "Talking to you does that to me."

I see. By the way, wasn't there a timer for my time in the Library? "Oh, that thing. Don't worry, it was tied to your MP, and since that thing is gone, you can be here as long as you want."

Perfect. "Still got to go outside, though."

Huh? Why? "Estelle is awake and confused about where you are."

Oh… yeah. The outside world exists.

I did the double release... somehow. There's a bunch of things I want to write in this author's note, but I also want to go eat dinner, so I'm cutting this short.