"It's time for the monster vaccine!"

Poke.

"GRAAAAAAAAAARGH!"

In terms of pure destructive capability, traditional weapons were traditional because they were good at what they did. However, there was no denying that there was something uniquely terrifying about a giant syringe, especially if it began firing magical bullets into the monster's body after piercing them.

Compa slumped down a moment later, panting, as the creature finally disappeared.

As everyone knew, dungeons were indestructible unless designed to be otherwise (like for collapsing after the Boss was defeated), so there were no dents or scrapes along the walls to indicate how fierce the battle had been.

There were only three girls, panting and wounded. Eventually, Compa managed to stagger to her feet, pull out a few potions, and hand them out.

Incidentally, nursing in Gamindustri was pretty much a sales job; only long-term sicknesses needed real care, so most people just downed a drink whenever they got hurt. It made things much easier.

"Jeez, why do these guys have to be so strong!?"

IF looked up from her cellphone.

"Well, Nep, maybe it's because you're a lazy bum who keeps losing her levels when things get peaceful."

"That's stupid! I don't wanna have to keep grinding all the time!"

Compa and IF ignored the tantrum. You had to let some things go or you'd never get any rest.

"Come on, Nep-Nep. We still have five dungeons to run before we head back for the day. I won't be your pillow if you're slacking."

"Fiend! Monster! Sadist! I should've known something was up the first time I saw that syringe of yours! You know I can't sleep without my hugging pillow!"

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"How are they doing?"

"Not bad. That romance simulator you set up is unexpectedly popular; a lot of them are gleefully going for a harem made of the CPU's."

"Wasn't our goal to pull people away from their tyranny?"

"Our goal is for them to play as many games as they want. We're not going to start telling them which games are right to play."

"I know, it's just… propping up our enemies like this seems wrong somehow."

"I dunno about that. If they think of the CPU's as objects to be possessed instead of worshipped, the Goddesses won't get any faith at all, right? That's a win in my book."

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"'All who are wounded in battle have the chance to earn a Purple Heart. It only counts if you actually beat the dungeon'? What the heck is this?"

Neptune stared at the poster plastered up on the side of the building, complete with a statue of her HDD form pictured on one side of it.

Neptune, Compa, and IF had finally finished their assigned dungeon runs and returned to the heart of Planeptune, Land of Purple Progress, to debrief, relax, and get something to eat. However, it hadn't taken long to see the advertisements newly posted around the city…

"Um… Histoire?"

"Yes, IF?"

"I don't think it's a good idea to encourage those shut-ins to get themselves hurt in the course of helping to clear dungeons. Aren't they going to deliberately get hit just to increase their chances of winning one of those figures?"

"…"

"…"

"I'm, uh, going to go get some new posters printed up."

"You do that."

A disturbingly high percent of each nation's population was composed of dedicated fans that would do just about anything to get some sort of prize. Stay up for two weeks straight playing a game? Easy. Achieve improbably high scores in chance-based games through sheer persistence? A normal task. Risking life and limb just to get another figure for a collection that already had dozens (if not more)? Just watch them compete!

"That statue doesn't make my butt look big, does it?"

"Don't worry, Nep-Nep, I'm sure it's correct down to the tiniest detail!"

"I'm not sure that's a good thing…"

Neptune turned to leave, only to pause when she saw somebody else looking at the poster.

"My butt's not that big!"

It never hurt to be sure people knew the truth.

The girl looking at the poster merely tilted her head a bit to look over.

"Hey, aren't you…?"

Compa's question, however, was interrupted almost immediately.

"You stole my boss monster! Gimme the rewards from that mission!"

As Neptune dove forward, the red-haired girl took a step backwards and watched as Neptune, deprived of a target, smacked into the ground.

"You're the Console Patron Unit of this land?"

"Yeah, what's it to you?"

Neptune pushed herself to her feet and put her hands on her hips.

"…You were having problems with a creature like that? I didn't realize the Goddesses were so pathetic."

"I was just about to smash it! Don't call me weak when you don't gimme the chance to show what I can do!"

"Victory needs no explanation. Defeat allows none."

The girl turned around and began walking away.

"Hey, don't walk away from me! I've got my pride as a CPU, you know! I'll show you just how awesome I can be!"

"A Goddess who doesn't do everything she can to protect her land doesn't deserve to be called a Goddess."

"She's gone…"

Compa sighed as the girl walked out of sight.

"Grr…"

Neptune's body shook.

"Nobody… but NOBODY… gets to talk to me like that! Compa, Iffy, after we eat, I'm going back out! You two can rest at the Basilicom!"

Food was always the highest priority for Neptune. Always.

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"Give me your toughest mission!"

Neptune slammed her hands onto the countertop and glared at the feminine young man standing there.

"Y-yes, Lady Purple Heart?"

His fingers flew over the keyboard behind the desk and the screen to the side flicked on.

"We've received a report that a monster called the Tyrant-Wyv… oh, hold on, somebody just beat it."

The attendant coughed slightly, then flicked another mission up.

"The Grand Sea Lo- no, hang on, the Golden Gu- wait, something like the-"

"MAKE UP YOUR MIND ALREADY!"

"S-sorry! It's just that a lot of the toughest enemies are all inside this one dungeon, and I guess somebody's clearing it right now. I can give you something from another place if you want, but it won't be the toughest mission."

Neptune twitched slightly.

A moment later, light surrounded her body. In just an instant, divine power hacked the fabric of the universe and restructured one girl's body. About half the people in the room threw themselves flat on the ground before her and began worshipping; the other half took out cameras and started taking pictures.

Well, this was Gamindustri, after all. The CPU's were more celebrities than actual rulers unless they got really serious about something.

That wasn't Purple Heart's concern however. She simply shot out of the doorway and began moving through the sky, heading to one of the areas that the Basilicom had always said nobody should ever go to.

"Tell me I'm not working hard as a Goddess, huh? Oh, I'll show her. I'll show them all! Ahahahahahaha! I'll get so much done that I'll be on top of the ranks for years even if I don't do anything else!"

Lightning flashed dramatically in the background as Purple Heart willed it to be so.

The one mistake that some people made was to forget who the Console Patron Units were. They might laugh, they might play, they might frustrate their Oracles and generally be difficult to deal with on a day-to-day basis… but when all was said and done, they were the ultimate entities that ruled the world with power all but unimaginable to lesser beings.

So, naturally, there were usually at least a few thousand heroes who could match them at any given time. Heroes were really good at beating deities who shouldn't have been beatable. Most of them stayed low to the ground, though, or only flew as high as was really necessary, because their attention was on the ground below.

Far above the land of Planeptune, however, Purple Heart could see a lot further than people usually did.

She crashed through the front door of her Basilicom ten seconds later.

"Histoire! HISTOIRE! Who raised a continent out of nowhere and didn't tell me!?"