Goblin Slayer! Side Story: Year One Volume 2 is the second novel of the Goblin Slayer Year One series.
The die is cast.
During one of his usual raids, the young man who has come to be known as Goblin Slayer discovers a ring that glows with a mysterious, fiery light. In is quest to identify it, he's introduced to Arc Mage, an eccentric wizard who lives on the edge of town. She enlists Goblin Slayer's help in revising the Monster Manual, a task the Guild has entrusted to her. It just so happens that the article she's been assigned to write is about...goblins.
Arc Mage and the young Goblin Slayer's ongoing research takes them to the ends of the earth, where they eventually reach an ominous, dark tower... It'll take some teamwork to get all the way to the top!
- Chapter 1: After Session, Scenario Hook: The End of One Fight, the Shadow of Another
- Interlude: Of How Everything Starts with a First Step
- Chapter 2: One Ring, One Spark
- Interlude: Of How They're Unable to Come Home Because the Map Is Unfinished
- Chapter 3: The Electric Magus
- Interlude: Of the Things That Worry a Receptionist
- Chapter 4: Johnson and Runner: The Relationship of Quest Giver and Adventurer
- Interlude: Of How Showing Off Is Part of Being an Adventurer
- Chapter 5: Her Scenario, His Scenario
- Interlude: Of How It's Best Not to Argue over the Distribution of Magic Items
- Chapter 6: After Session, Scenario Hook: The Reward and the Next Adventure
In the aftermath of a battle, a young monk was told by an injured general to give rites to their deceased enemies so they wouldn't return undead. After mentioning that the west, the general said that she wasn't interested in becoming an adventurer, farming nor selling herself, to which the young monk praised her for finding her own way to live. The general admitted that she came here because she didn't want people to look at her as a spoiled and coddled person, and thought to herself that her sister was the same. When the general asked him what he planned to next, the lizardman priest stated his interest in visiting the western frontier, thinking it would provide him with excitement.
Young Warrior was in the middle of advising a party of four to be careful before entering a mine, but struggled to talk due to the presence of a female silver-haired adventurer who looked like the late Half-Elf Ranger. The rookies then got into a disagreement about what to do next. Young Warrior began walking away, recognizing that he was little more than a rookie himself and that it was shameful for him to patronize them. However, when the silver-haired martial artist thanked him for his advice, Young Warrior figured moping wouldn't help anyone and decided to go with the party to assist them.
Inside some stone ruins, a group of goblins entertain themselves by raping their captive adventurers. Before one goblin could have his turn, Goblin Slayer killed it before taking care of the other grunts. The leading hobgoblin proved to be formidable, but was defeated once Goblin Slayer bludgeoned its head multiple times. While looking for goblin children, Goblin Slayer found a ring with a shimmering stone, but decided to carry on with taking the captives home, collecting the reward and taking the next goblin slaying quest.
As Cow Girl washed Goblin Slayer's clothing, she found it difficult to imagine him as the same person as the boy five years ago. She thought about what to do for him, and decided to make him dinner.
At the equipment shop, Smith refused to buy the ring Goblin Slayer found. The craftsman labelled it as a magical ring that had to be identified before being handled, which he claimed was a hassle. Having other plans for his money, Goblin Slayer was unable to afford Smith's price, so Smith suggested he ask other adventurers. After arriving at the Adventurer's Guild, Goblin Slayer is introduced to Witch, who suggested that he look for someone living on a riverside outside town. Once Goblin Slayer left, Witch asked Guild Girl to form her a proper party with Spearman.
After entering a hovel on the riverside, Goblin Slayer requested the wizard inside to identify his ring, which immediately piqued the wizard's interest. The wizard, who turned out to be a woman, assumed he had found Spark, but decided to analyze the ring first. After Goblin Slayer told her his ring was found in a goblin cave, the woman burst into laughter at the fact that it was found in such a location. She identified it as a breath ring, a ring that allowed him to breathe anywhere. The woman then attempted to seduce him into giving it to her, but Goblin Slayer simply asked something to help him kill goblins and offered her apple cider. As the woman fell down laughing at his response, the narration states this was Goblin Slayer's meeting with the magus of electricity, Arc Mage.
Led by Young Warrior, the rookie party fought off goblins as one of them mapped the abandoned mine, and eventually encountered a hobgoblin. Martial Artist delivered a punch to the hobgoblin, but its layers of fat protected the hobgoblin from harm. When the hobgoblin caught her leg, the padfoot wizard cast Fumble to disarm the hobgoblin long enough for Martial Artist to launch a kick into the hobgoblin's face. With the hobgoblin dead, the party finished off the remaining goblins.
Noticing that Martial Artist was still distraught by her near-death encounter, Young Warrior went to solace her; He told Martial Artist that it was okay to be scared and not everything goes as planned the first time; she would get another chance as long as she was alive. The elf and dwarf recovered pictographs from the hobgoblin, speculating that they were directions to wait for orders. Young Warrior learned that the party didn't know how to read or write, but offered to learn alongside them. Deciding to keep going a little longer, Young Warrior intended on telling the bald monk who was a member of his former party with to do the same.
To Cow Girl's disappointment, Goblin Slayer refused her offer of breakfast to go goblin hunting. She and her uncle discovered the large amount of money he left behind for rent, which made the latter speculate that he has a lover. The flustered Cow Girl suggested otherwise, which led her uncle to guess that Goblin Slayer may be finding companionship among whores. Visibly upset, Cow Girl called her uncle disgusting before storming outside. Alone, Cow Girl's uncle worried about how the boy from five years ago had taken up the nickname "Goblin Slayer". He hoped nothing odd would happen to his niece, but immediately regarded the thought as disrespectful to his late sister and her husband.
After Goblin Slayer came back to the hovel, Arc Mage told him that had he accepted her seductive offer, she would have cast an illusion on him to satisfy his fantasies. She revealed that she had been assigned to revise the guild's Monster Manual, specifically on goblins. Wanting to dissect a goblin, Arc Mage asked Goblin Slayer to help her. The two promptly went inside a goblin cave, but Arc Mage left the responsibility of guarding them both to Goblin Slayer alone. Nevertheless, Goblin Slayer killed the goblins and their wolves, along with a shaman and hobgoblin. As Arc Mage disemboweled several goblin corpses, she confirmed that goblins were a purely male race, and pointed out several vital points she suggested Goblin Slayer to target. She suggested that Goblin Slayer research goblins to aid in hunting, but Goblin Slayer refused, claiming that would allow goblins to destroy villages and that his sister told him they came from the green moon. When Arc Mage dismissed the latter as a mere fairy-tale for adults to joke about, Goblin Slayer told her he never found it amusing. As the two carried the goblins' captive outside, Arc Mage commented that to travel was to have traveling companions, but added they weren't going to the same place despite that.
At the Adventurer's Guild, Inspector deduced that Guild Girl was harboring feelings of depression upon seeing Goblin Slayer with Arc Mage, someone she knew little about. Arc Mage went up to the counter and asked for something, but Guild Girl could only nod and reply "yes?" as a response.
Wondering what to do for Goblin Slayer, Cow Girl remembered leaving the village a day after arguing with him, but struggled to remember everything else about her childhood. Upon remembering her uncle's guess that Goblin Slayer was spending time with whores, the flustered Cow Girl ran to the well to wash her face. Along the way, she noticed that the fence was fixed and figured that her uncle fixed it.
Goblin Slayer continued bringing goblin-related items to Arc Mage for several days. As a reward for bringing her goblin droppings, Arc Mage offered him one of the scrolls she collected. Goblin Slayer was told to ask another wizard to identify the scroll, so he sought out Witch to do so. Witch explained that it was a Gate Scroll which he could use to travel anywhere in the world, but he had to write a destination beforehand. Not knowing what to do with the scroll, Goblin Slayer asked Witch to keep it for him, leaving several gold pieces as advance payment before departing.
Guild Girl informed Spearman that Witch was looking to form a party with him, and Spearman became excited to partner up with a capable adventurer. Before Guild Girl could have a sip of her tea, Goblin Slayer went up to her to take two goblin quests. After he left, Guild Girl noticed that he drank the tea she offered her, which made her happy.
Despite arriving at night on a goblin-slaying quest, Goblin Slayer noticed that nearly all of the goblins in the cave were sleeping, as he had arrived at a time when it was early morning for them. As Goblin Slayer executed the sleeping goblins, he thought about washing them all away with a flood. He shrugged off the thought, but decided it was worth thinking about.
While delivering goods to the Adventurer's Guild tavern, Cow Girl eavesdropped on Young Warrior and another adventurer. To her dismay, she learned Goblin Slayer was frequenting a woman's house and was bothered by how one of them thought they were "birds of a feather". The next morning, Cow Girl's Uncle asked Goblin Slayer to pay her some consideration by spending time with her. As a result, Goblin Slayer agreed to help Cow Girl make her delivery to the guild. It was then that Arc Mage arrived, hugged Goblin Slayer and told him to get provisions from the tavern. Noticing Cow Girl was upset, Arc Mage eased her feelings by clarifying that they weren't in a relationship. As a word of advice, Arc Mage told Cow Girl that although Goblin Slayer may seem dense, he will listen to what she says to him.
As Spearman and Witch went over their quest, the latter asked him why he always talked to her. In response, Spearman brought up her appearance as well as her proficiency with magic. When prompted for anything else, Spearman stated that back when they took Cow Girl's quest, Witch went along with him despite the lack of entertainment and the low reward, making him realize she was a good person. Witch confessed that she didn't view herself as such a woman, but Spearman told her the fact that someone appreciated her looks, abilities and heart had to have made her happy. Spearman then gave her a smile, which rendered Witch speechless.
Goblin Slayer and Arc Mage decided to camp for the night after nearly two days since leaving town. When Arc Mage questioned what goblins thought about, Goblin Slayer stated he was only concerned with how they would act. Agreeing, Arc Mage admitted that concern was why she thought it wasn't wrong for Goblin Slayer to not write a book on goblins, and after considering the prerequisites to make one. She then commented that the world was a god's tabletop abundant with fate and chance, and that the light of knowledge was thin compared to the darkness of ignorance.
Once the two reached the end of a field that led to a wasteland, Arc Mage pointed Goblin Slayer to a dark tower infested with what appeared to be goblins. Before sneaking into the tower, Arc Mage clarified that the goblins were actually shades; respawned shadows of goblins from a previous battle. Goblin Slayer killed goblins as the two worked their way through the tower's passages, and eventually reached a room with a thick door. A mist-like shadow floated in front of it, which Arc Mage deduced was a key that had to be restored to its proper form. With goblins approaching, Goblin Slayer decided to hold them off while Arc Mage worked to open the door. Arc Mage struggled at first, but once she figured out the formulae, she managed to unlock the door, with its shadow being five. The number of goblins killed numbered over one-hundred nineteen as Arc Mage repeated the process each time for the next four floors; the respective shadows being eight, sixteen, twenty-four, and one hundred twenty. Upon reaching the sixth, Arc Mage panicked; the shadow was a six-hundred polychoron, and Arc Mage worried that she wouldn't have enough time to solve it. At the same time, the amount of goblins began to overwhelm Goblin Slayer. However, after Goblin Slayer declared he would buy her time, Arc Mage realized that was all she had to do, and cast a spell to accelerate herself and form the key. Goblin Slayer pulled out his Gate Scroll to unleash a massive wave of high-pressure seawater that tore apart the goblins.
After climbing a considerably longer flight of stairs, the two opened a door to what lay beyond the edge of the world, and Arc Mage told Goblin Slayer this was where she had to go. She then told him that she won't laugh if he became "Goblin Slayer", because his knowledge was a spark. Hoping it would help him hunt goblins, Arc Mage handed Goblin Slayer the Spark ring as a reward for everything she asked of him, before walking through the door. The Spark ring turned into a regular Breath ring shortly after, and Goblin Slayer used it to escape the flooded tower. After heading back to town, Goblin Slayer wondered about what was beyond the "board" and if Arc Mage wanted to become one of the players, but shrugged off the thought; he simply concluded that Arc Mage achieved what she wanted.
Before confronting a cockatrice, Spearman and Witch had slain the warlock who turned out to be a Non-Prayer of the Evil Sect. Witch cast her remaining spell to bind the cockatrice in a spider web, enabling Spearman to drive his spear through its heart. When searching for loot, Spearman found what turned out to be a wizard's staff. Witch suggested that they sell it, since they agreed to split the reward. Spearman stated building fighting strength was a priority when making a party, but was willing to sell the staff if she didn't want it. With that, Witch decided to keep the staff, which Spearman called an investment in the future.
Cow Girl accompanied Goblin Slayer as he took the delivery cart to Arc Mage's hovel. The two loaded the cart with books and items, which Goblin Slayer intended on giving to the Guild to donate to places like the temple of the God of Knowledge. After arriving at the guild, Cow Girl asked Goblin Slayer what happened to the wizard he worked with. Goblin Slayer replied that she went somewhere far away and that she may not come back, but added that he didn't think she was dead. When Cow Girl asked if he missed her, Goblin Slayer replied that he didn't know, but stated that in a way, he possibly did.
The two began walking back to the farm, passing by Young Warrior and the rookie party, as well as Spearman and Witch. After stealing a glance at Goblin Slayer, Cow Girl realized that it was him who repaired the fence. She also figured that if they worked until nightfall, she would have the opportunity to prepare stew to eat with him and her uncle. Cow Girl told him that she would pull the cart when they were doing her jobs, which Goblin Slayer assented.