Chapter 3:

The Sea, The Mountain And The Phoenix

Being a NEET... in another world?

“Guess it’s my turn this time, huh?” As the next day arrived, Nereid finally dropped her phone and stretched her body, ready to do her task. However, what seemed to be like every other day caused great concern to her sisters, as the youngest, Oread, was the one to speak up:

“Um, Nereid… How long… have you been up?”

“All night.” With a nonchalant look on her face, the sea nymph answered.

“Are you… sure you’ll be fine?”

“Eh, pretty much.” With a shrug of the shoulder, Nereid brushed off the conversation, but that wasn’t enough to convince her sisters.

“I really think I should go with you.” Oread once again suggested, and it seemed like the others didn’t plan to stop her any time soon. Nereid, meanwhile, didn’t show any discontent or joy at the thought, and instead continued:

“Come on then, we don’t want to be too late like yesterday.”

At the foot of the mountain once more, the two sister were both equally surprised when the first thing that caught their eyes was a small table with a strange, metallic-like box and another glass panel on the side. For Nereid, she had already know what the glass panel was, but the strange box was also a first for her. Naturally, she approached the mysterious contraption, while Oread was pulling onto her to no avail.

“Hey, hey, welcome!” As soon as she touched the device, out popped the deadbeat mage in question, surprising both sisters so much that they fell bottom-first onto the ground. And, as if to mock the two even more, the figure continued with a prolonged laugh.

“Surprised? Of course you are. Oh, but don’t bother attacking or answering back to me. This is a prerecorded message after all. Well, anyway, I’ve been feeling that I haven’t been that nice to you girls these past few days, so I’m gonna give you a fair chance.”

“See that phone over there?” Pointing exactly towards the table, the mage’s image continued. “I know that you know what that is already. Just open that up and you’ll see a kind of game. Like a lottery, if I have to make a simple comparison. So, the challenge is simple: win the prize on that phone, and I’ll listen to your request. Of course, I have my ways of knowing whether you win or not, so you don’t have to worry about that. Should you accept the challenge… well, what are you waiting for? Roll to your heart’s content!”

“… Roll?” The mage’s words ere puzzling for Oread, to say the least. “What does he mean by ‘roll’?”

“Oh, that little bastard…” her sister, on the other hand, was fuming with rage, something that no one had ever observed, or even associated with her before, “you wanna roll, punk? I’ll show you!”

“Um… but what does it mean?” Oread asked once more, but her question soon fell to deaf ears, as Nereid had already picked up the phone with the kind of determination and rage that one would normally feel upon entering a decisive battle.

“… Sis?”

“Ah, I see. A free 10-roll at the start of a campaign, eh?” Contrary to the mountain nymph’s still clueless expression, the saltwater nymph let out a devious smirk as soon as the opened that only app on the phone. “Rookie mistake. No one gives a free 10-roll on a standard banner without the intention of throwing the players a free SSR. It might be shit, but the rarity is all that matters…”

“I win this round, mage!” Letting out a triumphant battle cry, Nereid raised her right hand high up into the sky, and, using her finger, pressed down onto the screen as hard as she could.

On the phone, meanwhile, a blinding white light flashed forward, engulfing even the area surrounding it. As the light settled, one could see the still confused, but somewhat joyous look on Oread’s face, while Nereid bore the opposite.

“We did it, right? That light was amazing!”

“God damn it! Not even a 4-star? Who in the hell designed this stuff that I couldn’t even get a 4-star in one 10-roll?”

“Wait, so… did we do it?” Oread continued to ask, but her words continued to be ignored.

“Motherfucker… he gave me a limit of 100 rolls? You’re really testing my patience here, mage…”

“Roll!” With another roaring scream, Nereid’s quest of pushing really hard onto the screen continued.

And thus, the process repeated itself. The constant white light. The constant shouts in agony. The hair-ripping and tantrum-throwing experience, all witnessed by another innocent soul who had no idea what was going on. And yet, even without the understanding of her family, the ocean nymph treaded forward on her dark journey. Until…

“Is this it? Is this finally it?” Alas, not a white light, but a golden one blessed the area around the two sisters, and along with it came the ultimate bliss Nereid had felt the entire day; as if she was cleansed by the pure, sweet water of life.

As the golden light dissipated, her prize finally revealed itself…


“Um, so…”

“Wait, what’s this?” As if she was the only one left in the world at the moment, Nereid kept on talking to herself. “Paid option? Use your mana to get more rolls? Ah, I see what you’re trying to go here. You’re trying to make me whale for this. Well you’ve made a grave mistake, mage. I’m not going to become a whale. For you see… I am already a whale!”

“Wait, Sis, what are you doing?” Even if Oread had absolutely no clue what the events that had been transpiring around her so far were, if there’s one thing she could realize, it was her sister’s mana being slowly but surely depleted over time, at an alarmingly steady rate. If whatever Nereid was doing kept adding up, then surely she would run out of mana soon, and losing consciousness would sure to come afterwards.

“Nereid, stop! I don’t know what you’re doing, but please! You don’t have to do it anymore!” As a last-ditch effort to pull her sister back from the depths of insanity, Oread hel onto her sister with everything that she could muster, even by moving the rocks and earth around her to form a sturdy arm, in an attempt to separate Nereid from the demon’s phone.

“Unhand me Oread!” The sister, on the other hand, showed no signs of stopping, and, with a powerful blast of water, wiped out all of the rocks Oread could hope to support.

“How could you still use such powerful spells even when your mana is being sapped by the minute?”

“I reject my magical stability, Oread! Roll!”

Deep inside the castle on top of the mountain, a certain man lying comfortably on his king-size bed was watching the events transpiring from his own phone with great joy, occasionally letting out a chuckle as he witnessed the saltwater nymph living up to her name. Unbeknownst to him, however, another person had already infiltrated his dwellings, and, with a puff of golden flame, spawned right in the middle of his room.

“What the-Who are you?” Shocked by the sudden appearance, the man asked, immediately going into a defensive stance.

“I believe this is the first time we meet,” the perpetrator, a woman with beautiful and luscious orange hair, like a river reflecting the setting sun, answered, “I cannot state my true name to know, but you might know me by my title, the Phoenix Queen, and also the one who instigated your summoning.”

“The Phoenix Queen? How did you get in here?”

“Don’t oversell your abilities, young man,” with a light smirk on her face, the elegant queen answered, “I was the one who thought of the idea of summoning between worlds, remember? Figuring out something as simple as teleportation was but a mere child’s play.”

“… So, what do you want?” For the first time since he was summoned, the mage Jiyuu put up a serious face.

“Nothing, really,” contrary to his expectations, the queen only answered with a light shake of the head, “I just wanted to say sorry, for dragging you into our problems. With this experience, I realized that I couldn’t just bring a stranger to our world and expect them to solve our problems. And for that, I thank you for helping me notice that tiny, but important, part.”

“Heh,” now it’s time for Jiyuu to let out a smirk of his own, “so what’s my compensation?”

“Well… your current life here is quite satisfying already, is it not? Or do you want me to bring you back to your own world?”

“Uh,… yeah, no thanks. I’m quite content with here.” Waving his hands to signal a refusal, Jiyuu quickly came to an answer.

“Well, I believe we’re done here. Farewell.” With a quick goodbye, the queen engulfed herself in flames once again and disappeared from the castle without a trace. From his phone screen, he could also see the nymph sisters leaving the premise with their queen. For the first time since he had arrived in this world, it was the first time he’s truly been left alone.

“… Welp, now I’m bored.”