“I thought that they would just do some countermeasures, aside from that”
I and two Agents ran for our lives into the forest, disregarding our fatigue and complexity of the cause of fire. Two hours have we ran until we found a glade within the forest, where we can completely stop.
Never in my wildest dream I could imagine a ghost was raising a child, but truths are truths. My feet can’t stop trembling.
I looked at Randy, by full name of Na Rang Jie of Seokgulam that looked stupefied at the rising smoke, After the case is wrapped, He explained to me that He was from The Secret Agency that enforces the law in The Southern-east of the continent, that means I am also in the Southern-east part.
“Well” I lightly called to Nekomata Soo-Min and lowered my head “I beg your forgiveness for my rudeness prior...”
She seemingly flashed to behind Rang Jie, her tails bristles as She looked at me with cautious eyes.
But, even when my urges to kneel and beg for forgiveness so strong, I spoke with a calm suppressed voice “By the way, Do you know any fastest route to The Fortress city of Mercuria ? and oh, The Sesame seed please”
And by the way, that statement was made when we were chased by a horde of Undeads, those gas must have attracted them. But I keep my calm because I judged that making a blunder is too stupid.
Fur and Tailcoat
Early January 1529
It has been a month since I had been almost kicked into the bucket-or whatever the phrase is, with a slave named Stella in tow on a journey to the west. Still, First I need to find who is the perpetrators, but I lacked something myself.
“WHY AM I SO UNFORTUNATE !?”
My discontent voice echoed through the woods as I walk like a wagon with a cargo of a person as I walk through this seemingly infinite woodlands. But, rather dismal metaphorically, my enchanted legs doesn't feel sore, making me able to cross with significantly shorter time even without knowing the actual way.
Other reason is, After I got my payment, Divine retribution struck me in the head in a form of wanted posters. Announcing me as a child molester and extremely dangerous to all of Irrilith.
Just like that, I had to flee through. But it seems that a little luck still nested in my spirit, after this month-long march, I could finally see a huge shadow at the distance after all the walking.
“Halt” a Guard on the walls called to me with a shout the instant he spotted the figure, the sunrays was foreshadowing his figure so I couldn’t see him clearly “Who are you ?”
“Err…I’m an adventurer” I answered with the same loud tone after confirming the language, He then responded by telling me to wait after seeing me, if I’m not mistaken, It was the language of the central portion of the continent.
After some waiting, a figure came out of the small door at the side of the gate. I can’t see his features because of his helmet with visor down, but he seems to be a part of the guards with the halberd.
“Your Identification card please ?” He inquired in hoarse, heavy voice.Which I judged that he seems to be a 40 year old male.
“In my pants pocket”
Because my hands are full as it appears, He involuntarily reached into my pocket and pulled out a blue card. After confirming it, He stepped to the side of the door.
“Anyway, Why do you only wear those thin clothes? I know there’re eccentric people in the guild but still…” His stares are literally stabbing daggers into me, a fact that I can only shrug off and claim.
“I have no other choice but to come back when I found this kid in the woods”
I wasn’t even interested in his answer, so I just passed through the gate just when He looked at me with bewildered look, even the town folks are seeing me with weird gazes, well,it’s only natural to look like that at a man with only a sleeveless undershirt with a larger size carrying a girl with beast ears, with only a loose coat to cover her body.
At this rate, rumor will spread like a wildfire. But it’s still better than to let some life die out in vain. The pale-skinned slave girl snored around my ear as I found The Guild office, a 2 story building with a name that is not so different from before.
It’s already around 6 in the morning, and yet nobody is still here ? Fortunately, I wasn’t coming in normal circumtances. I carefully put Stella on a small table and walked to the counter, where I pushed a bell to call an employee.
The Guild Employee that was assigned to this branch came out of the back not too long after, She is still wearing her pajamas and her hair are all bed-ridden “…What business do you have today ?”
She yawned with her eyes half-open, doziness reeked from her like a bubonic plague on her human body.
“Well” I pulled out my blue member card and put it on the counter “I wish to take some quests”
“Uuh~, Then, please check the bulletin board ?”
“Um, okay. But is it fine if I took some err…newbie tasks ?”
It looked like she isn’t taking me seriously due to her drowsiness, but she took the card and gave it an adjustment before returning it, doesn’t the guild have policies of checking though ? The member card even had a security measure such as not leaving it in radius of 15 meters or it would send an alert to the corresponding adventurer.
But, experience has taught me the importance of money, so it’s essential tomake first move in reserving quests. Moreover, some load has been passed on my shoulders in the past month.
“Um…”Before I go, I asked her in introverted tone “Do Guilds have some Medical items ?”
“Ngah ? Yeah, of course. They are right there”
I instantly darted my sight to the direction she pointed and walks over, a second later, my activity is accompanied with a snoring sound from the back.
Well, I couldn’t care less about her behavior. So, I just flush it off and took the contents of the box. It includes a stick with 5 colors, a synthetic bandage roll and 2 small bottle of blood red potion.
I held the stick and examine it as I think to myself “This must be one they use to identify the plague”
this is a device I have never seen before, but I had known of it’s use, for I had seen something similar.
It would glow if it found the disease, either caused by Bacteria or some infection. Naturally, I just do the same and put the stick in the sleeping girl mouth.
After a short while, I pulled the stick back. It glowed with pinkish hue at the end of the stick. I have almost no knowledge on magic items or medical items, so I need to ask The Guild employee.
“Ah, Pink ?” She said with half-closed eyes “That was….Hallucinogen and…the bottom was black…Sedative”
After telling me the problem, The Employee dropped back to sleep. It looks like Rang Jie was right, She was given Hallucinogen and Sedative because of her slave status, Slave trafficking is a serious crime and further that Nigan had the weaponry of The Alchemy branch, some noble must have betrayed us.
“I will send an execution letter…” Yeah, That is definitely. But for now, I need to expand my ability to provide a synthetic environment because I now live by myself, and although I’m knowledgeable about magic, My mana just won’t rise to that level.
I picked the sleeping slave and packed the remaining emergency items, I also didn’t forget to take a job notice to take once I put her into rest
It was a vacant position of a butler in the mansion at the center of town, I might make it one way or another, because of my rank, I can’t take subjugation quests yet.
It couldn’t be any worse, right ? Now I wonder if Silver could cook by himself… As I think about that guy, I managed to find an inn and rented a room for the rest of my money.
This is my first day in the town, after 16 years of my life, I-Nina- 17 years old am able to go to the city and learn about how the city folks able to live such a decent life.
“Nina, Don’t let some handsome guys have their way with you okay ? Most of them could have lecherous thoughts about you” warned my mum before I depart on the canopied cart of Mr. Marlone, a merchant that usually came by to buy goods from us.
“I will do my best !” I yelled suddenly while holding my clenched hands at the front of me, this is a day like none other. I have been accepted into a magic academy by letter.
“Nina, We are near the town, so fix your manners” Mr. Marlone looks like he is in bad mood…perhaps because I was yelling periodically in my excitement, merchants are silver tongued to customers he said, but I’m not a customer myself.
Meanwhile, I have finally arrived in my destination. A shadow of large building could be seen in the horizon. It was the landmark that has been written in the letter “Minesta Royal Academy” that symbolizes the capital of the country of Minesta, The Fortress city of Nanaar.
But still, it is still bigger than I expected. I expect it was like some industrial city with magic stores and arms stores everywhere, but instead it has more districts than I expected from my home village which only has one grocery and butcher each.
“Whoaaa…Big city sure is awesome !”
I was dazed by the sight around me, waters with various color and also things I have never seen before looks like they were telling me to come and try, although Mum only gave me around 7 bronze coin, I couldn’t possibly resist !
“Oi ! If yer gonna walk, then walk ! Don’t block the road, lil’ missy !”
Suddenly, my braid was pulled by someone when I was looking around. In my surprise, I turned around. An Uncle that looks like in early 30’s with goatee looks like he is angry.
“S-Sorry !” I stepped aside as He let go of my braid and passed me while wearing a piercing glare. I was so scared that I closed my eyes for the duration he took to pass me.
“Uh…I can’t be loitering around here…City folks sure are scary”I opened my eyes and took my bag and then took out the recommendation letter that was sent after I passed the exams. I got B in magician rank, a rank that a few only have from what The Village Chief told me.
It has my name written on it and was sealed with wax before, it instructs me to go to a certain address. I followed it, but it looks like my habits are still kicking in, because I was entering a back alley area instead of The School grounds.
“Aw Lord…It looks like I’m lost, again” Slums, Back alleys, Taverns. All kind of unpleasant smell were gathered here made me almost threw up. Having no sense of direction sure is a problem, even a woods is easier to navigate than this.
At the roadside are various kind of people like The Uncle from before, They gave the aura of thugs that used to extort money from us, Just when I was nearing the wall as to avoid getting my shoes soaked in a puddle of dirty water, I could hear angry arguments on the other side of the wall.
My Heart screamed to me to get out of here as quickly as possible, it only worsen when I could hear the men I passed whispered in weird way. Before I knew it, I’m already half-running.
Just when I looked forward again, I had bumped into someone on the crossroads. But strangely, I don’t feel any pain at all. When I looked at the one I bumped into, I know why I didn’t feel anything, I bumped into a girl and caused her to fall.
“Sorry ! are you okay ?” I extend my hand to help her stand up. it’s unexpected, She looks like a pre-adolescent girl and a pretty one. Her hair are colored light green and tied into twintails by two white ribbons that allow a full view of her nicely proportioned face.
“Yes, thank you” Even her tone of speaking are unexpected and too different from the thugs. from experience, The Thugs tone were made to be intimidating that always made me cry, but this girl tone are gentle and nice although this is supposed to be the shady place, She wore a plain white one-piece dress with a white ribbon tied over her neck.
She titled her head after she took my hand and stand up,and dusting off the dirt on her clothes “Are you by chance a Freshman in Minesta Royal Academy ?”
She pointed her hand to the ground where a piece of paper is on , I must have dropped it earlier.
“What a coincidence, I am also a Freshman. Nice to meet you, My name is Chelsea Meadowripe”
“S-Samewise ! Name is Nina !”
I hurriedly picked the recommendation letter up and bowed down as she bow lightly. I have to show some manners as to not be recognized as a country hick !
“Well, Are you perhaps lost ?” She hits the bulleseye, I was lost because of my no sense of direction. I unconsciously dropped my head accompanied by a giggling.
“It cannot be helped then” Chelsea stopped her giggling and turned to the west of the crossroad “I will take you there, If we do not hurry, we might be late for the assembly”
“Eh ? Ah, T-Thanks…Anyway, it is rude for me to ask, but which rank are you ?”
“Me ? I am Rank A+”
Seriously, How much could a city surprise me ? My fellow freshman is an A+ rank ? Unbelievable.
“Well then, Thank you for your care this past month”
A middle-aged man in luxurious clothing waves his hands as I spoke my thanks, my hands are clad in gloves with my body is covered in a butler outfit.
I bow my head deeply and kneeled to give a deep impression. But really, I couldn’t make deep impression to this Master of mine.
It has been a month since I received this quest in this mansion located in the innermost sect of the city, with the Duke was the one issuing the request to the guild.
It was a plain job at first, being pushed and bossed around. But as per tenet, I have gotten an advantage of free information from the duke
And as a bonus, I have also earned a privilege because of a “special case”
“You are a reliable butler, for an adventurer”
“Brother James was surely reliable” came over a sentence in high-pitched voice, accompanied with the low, deep voice telling to raise my head.
I raised my head with a smile, and what welcomes me is a small girl with her characteristic green eyes and purple dress is at the front of me while clenching her hands, a large grin crossed over her face.
“Mistress, It was nice serving you over the past month” I put my right hand on my left chest and bow lightly, This is the special case, the only daughter of the Duke, Aura.
As I stood up and bow again to excuse myself, She started to cling to me, it incited the master’s wrath“Aura ! It is unsightly ! Cease that behavior !”
“It is okay, Master”
I raised my linen-covered hand to stop my temporary master from separating the young mistress. She was surprisingly precocious for a little girl, She is still 7 years old but She already likes tea, solid foods and could eat vegetables, however, still childish that radiates an adorable charm.
“Come now, It is already past 11. Shall we ?” I lifted and put her on my broad shoulder unlike the first day. When I first got here, She was a sleep-deprived youth that absolutely needs a counseling, but that time is not what I have.
I simply have to knock continuously until she opens up to me
That is why, She is used to my harsh behavior and rehabilitation. With a gentle smile on my face occasionally, She has actually become a sociable member of reality.
“What snack do you wish to eat today ?”
“Mm…Let’s see, Scone, maybe ?”
“As you wish”
She held onto my neck as I walked through the manor corridors, the maids who were once a prideful noble daughters have been reduced to a silence with lips when I arrived at a doubledoors with the young mistress on my shoulder.
Inside this is a scene of a fairy tale, which I designed myself. As The Master was troubled over his heir, I had requested this for her rehabilitation, which He agreed without a second thought.
“Please wait a little, your snack will be here shortly”
I put her down after we passed a way bridge to a Gazebo, She then throws herself on the couch with a table at the front already prepared there.
I stride back through the garden’s door and walk out. And although it’s quite expected, a small giggling voice spoke to me
“You seem to be enjoying yourself”
“Ah, Not at all.”
“You could cook, clean, tending gardens and also could protect the master. It is a shame you are only an adventurer”
“You are flattering me too much, Miss Rienne”
My cheeks turns into a rosy hue color, I am still not used to praise, especially by Superiors because I had no superiors to obey. But The Head maid Rienne was always consoling me when I first entered about necessities of a butler.
how to wear a tailcoat, a waistcoat and the proper manners of a butler, even though she is a maid that always wears maid uniform, She knows how to properly wear a tailcoat, it doesn’t come with perfection, but her imperfection has made something perfect.
Her imperfection are such as, Her hands are partially one of the Harpies and at her waist, sprouted a tail. According to her, She was a Kikimora, a descendant of harpies that regressed violence and tried to coexist, this earned her my respect.
“By the way, What does The Young Mistress wishes for ?” She said as she made me blurt an answer in my hopeless daydreaming
“She wants scones for accompaniment for Early Afternoon tea”
“is that so ? I shall prepare the ingredients then”
After She left with a handful of maids, I retreated my Linen-gloves and dashed through the opposite direction which leads me to a latticed steel doors as I put my legs to a sudden halt. After I cleared my voice, I spoke
“Well,well,well. Have you all behaved yourselves ?”
“Screw you !”
“It looks like you haven’t learned your lesson.”
I pinched my nose bridge in reply to the angry voice from the other side, this is the privilege of working as a butler. I don’t particularly have any qualms working here because of this, If I want more, It wouldn’t end.
I reached to my albert. A key with a horse ornament is attached to the chain. After putting it in and turn it, the door opened with a painful, scratching sound like one would hear in a dirge.
The Interior is by no way pleasant, a dark room with only 2 torches as a source of light. I can smell a putrid smell at the end of the room, the limited light only illuminate figures of two people at the back and one bounded criminal at the center.
“Well then, Have you learned your lessons, Louis ? Lest you broke like your friends in the back there ?”
He wriggles in fear and let out a soft groan as I pointed to the cannibals, or at least former humans that I broke using torture tricks. I can’t request torture instruments so I resorted to what that is available, I removed their testicles, pulled out their vocal cords and haven’t feed them anything after I strip them naked.
By the castration, gone was their dignity as Men. By loss of their vocal cords, lost was their ability to share their pain. And By stripping them naked, squished were their human dignity. With all their worth lost, and without any means to feed themselves, they fell one by one and because no longer they have self-awareness as Humans anymore. They feed among themselves, becoming even less than an animal.
This is the complete and deserving torture of slave traders that cast aside the Human rights of the slaves for maternal richness.
They were sent here around 15 days ago. When I was immersed in thoughts on how to find the culprit, The forgotten “Telepathic Glass” which connected to The Inquisition Force Major transferred my thoughts to her, which after judging, authorized personally by me for a “Teleportation Jewel”.
She was awe-struck when she heard it, because such items are only available to higher ranks, but my knowledge over items used in The Order consists of much more than that, which proves that I’m one of the high-ranker and have authorities.
After I told her the criteria and how to use the jewel, these guys were transferred in after I secured this slaughterhouse. 5 people with the same criteria of The ability to produce that blue powder, which I used as a bait co-ed with information I made Nigan spit to corner the culprit.
The Merchant family of Bluestar, more specifically, the third son of the Bluestar household, Louise Bluestar is the mastermind behind the trading of slaves.
“Now then, I will start to get serious” I took off my tie and throw it to Louis “Louis Bluestar, In charge of slavery and their trafficking, I, 14th generation of Hargreave family by name of James Hargreave, am going to give your judgment, do you have anything left to say for your coup de grace ?”
“14th generation !? What the hell !?”
My right hand swooped onto a weapon rack next to the door, originally various weapons and instruments were stored here, but since I used this prison, it all replaced by broadswords.
“Say again ? “
“Yeah ! You should’ve been dead ! Mecuria was destroyed ! And-“
Before he could finish his sentence, my arm sliced off his body in two. As usual, my arm didn’t even twitch during the execution. As his torso squirted blood to my shoes, I feel something in my chest.
“This is…anxiety ?”
I looked at the twitching corpse and my stained sleeves. Although my grip isn’t trembling, the upper part to my shoulder trembled slightly . He is indeed right about me being killed and Mercuria attacked by Dragonkins, but shouldn’t The glorious city be rebuilt at this time ?
“Maybe just some worthless arrogance, Mercuria should have been rebuilt decades ago”
I spun my sword and push the hilt to send it piercing to the cannibals who came over the fresh meat, as I think how their happy corpses now serve as decoration of reminder in this torture room, I turned away from the gruesome vista and went out the room and locked it.
“Maybe The Order I know might have corrupted more than I expected”
With this, My business is considered done. I’m glad that my predictions were not so far off. His arrogance that thinks that the world revolves around him provide an adequate reason for execution.
And such as such, My last day end up by silently making a swift exit after changing up and passing a note on the scones of “This has my purest and fullest skill poured in it ! I wish you all happiness this world has to offer, Young lady Aura !”, But I have to admit, those note doesn’t sound like me as I head towards the city outskirts to gather herbs.
The Shining King has set when I have finished and returned with bundles of herbs, I need to visit The Adventurer Guild before I went back to the inn to exchange these.
“Hey, I’m back” Unexpectedly, The Employee who had been taking care of me had yet to leave although it was past closing time.
“Oh, you are back, James. Are you here to exchange those herbs again ?”
“Yes, and also, another contract for today.”
I passed the employee the note I got from the master and afterwards and she came bringing my rewards. 2 Asuryan Silver coin, an even amount.
“Hey, by the way. Here a silver coin extra, The Duke said you prevented his daughter from being a shut-in, right ? He asked the guild a favor from the paper.” Suddenly a silver coin was flipped into the air right into my counting palm, I immediately direct my head to the employee out of surprise and distraught.
“Congratulations on ranking up, You could probably take up subjugation quests. You know, for that kid of yours”
She is a nice person, although a little cold. But she is a warm one even with all the inadequacy which I envied her.
I accepted the Silver coin and advice with a nod and leave the Guild office heading towards the Inn nearby. After I get my key from the keeper and confirming reservation, I went to the rented room. I had to make a double check to ensure her safety.
“Hey, Stella. I’m back”
I vainly announced my return as I opened the door. A Girl with black hair and wolf ears I had brought with me more than ten days ago is still asleep, even without eating or drinking anything, the ears didn’t even twitch a muscle every night I check on her.
“Well then, Old man. I leave the rest to you” I faintly sighed as I tapped the Inn’s doctor whom I passed a silver coin while doing so, He then enters the room without many questions while I do the opposite.
A boy that has been molded into the finest ideal that is without fear, regret and filled with virtues instead of common sense, I think about am I really molded to such while leaning to the wall next to my room.
And I slowly fell asleep.
We walked through the slums alleys after that short meetings. She said her name is Chelsea Meadowripe, a transfer student from a big town that is lacking in magic, She also said that her teacher that is a magician said it was a waste to let such as her talent to rot.
“Chelsea…” I timidly called to her as we walked through, it has been past midday already.
“Yes ? What is it ?”
She responded cutely to me as she tilt her head, ugh…It’s hard to believe that this girl is an A+ that is considered as monsters in a form of Humans. Although my village was occasionally visited by powerful magicians too, it’s still surprising that I would find a younger one here.
“Nina, Do you need me of something, And you hair has been a little ruffled. Has any ruffians acted rudely ?”
“Ah…Well, Some middle-aged man pulled my braid earlier…”
“Hmm, Could it be a dwarf ? Do you need me to ?"
Her big yellow eyes looked at me with anxiety, I was completely mystified so I just picked a random family topic to drive away the awkward mood.
Suddenly, a gloomy tone passed her that replaces her cheerful nature.
“Well, My family is not here anymore…”
“But still ! I can’t give up just yet !”
She quickly shook her head side to side. now I get it, She must have given effort more than anyone, I don’t know her reason, but she is trying so hard for a recommendation, my reason was to support my parents in the village, but Chelsea doesn’t have any parents anymore.
“Now then, The Academy shouldn’t be far by now. Let’s go !” She cheerfully grasped my hand and runs forward, trying to desperately focus herself to her goal. I couldn’t help but smile, a city girl has a rougher life than a country girl like me, it’s another surprise because I expected them to elegantly walk without care in the world.
After a quick run, a large silhouette appears behind the slum’s roofs. A Green gem embedded on top of a golden gate that surround the academy gives an imposing atmosphere that is so much that it made me think that could I have been in wrong place.
“Your recommendation letter, please.”
“Huh ? Uh-yeah, here”
Suddenly, a deep voice was from nowhere stated that it wants to see the recommendation letter, I took my letter out of my clothes in a flustered fashion when Chelsea held her letter in her hands.
“Very well, New students are to be gathering in The Assembly Hall. Welcome to Minesta Royal Academy”
It looks like the voice is the guard or something, because the sturdy gate didn’t show any sign of opening before we show our letters.
The gate closed after we passed it automatically, the school was simply too large to be explored on our own but luckily, there are many students that each of them seems to be either Geniuses, Wealthy people or simply magician. We headed east just as they instructed and saw a large building at the end of the grounds.
“Whoa…What an amazing campus….I-I’m not dreaming right ?”
“Of course you are not, Silly ! Um, That reminds me, What rank are you again ?”
“Um…I’m a Rank B”
Suddenly a shout interferes with Chelsea’s inquiry as a man clad in white robe run towards us, his skin is practically almost like they were made of white porcelain, with a white hair and shining purple eyes.
After He finally reached us, he reached his knees and speaks in tired voice “As I thought…You were lost, weren’t you ?”
“Ehehe~, You got me there.” Chelsea stuck her tongue and answers in gesture by winking her eyes playfully, She seems close to this person, so I unconsciously asked
“Chelsea, This person was ?”
“He is my brother, His name was-“
“Raphael Meadowripe, I must thank you for taking care of Chelsea, You are a fellow freshman, yes ?”
My fingers twitched spontaneously when Chelsea refer to him as her brother with some energy already channeled but it dissipated when Raphael bowed lightly while Chelsea continues
“He was in the same Orphanage as me.”
“Hey, Don’t say that ! I’m the one who built the orphanage, remember ?”
So She didn’t lie, and Raphael was perhaps carrying her surname because of pity after inheriting his parent’s orphanage…What a relief.
“Well, The examination should begin soon. So, you should go to the assembly quickly”
“Wait ! How old are you ?”
“Your rank ?”
“I’m a Rank SS. Once again, I thank you for taking care of Chelsea”
Just when he is about to leave, I let out my curiosity, but the proverb was right “Curiosity killed the cat”. As he walks away, I muttered under my breath with my feet freezing
“This Academy’s full of monsters…Rank SS…What kind of monster is he…”
“Don’t worry, He is not a monster.”
As if she was able to read my mind, Chelsea answered my self-asked question with confidence. I was dazed for a moment but She has already reached the hall that I run after to catch up with.
First step in The New Devil’s Mire
A soft voice called me from the darkness while I lay still in it, my eyelids that covered my eyes is seen like canopies that bring the darkness over.
“It is you…” I called with a blank mind that I can’t explain why
“Yes, I am your family ! now, wake up !”
“Ah, that’s right. I have yet to bid you fare thee well. I need to get to Mercuria soon and meet you”
I slowly open my eyes as the voice faded into black and my vision turns to a view of a wooden corridor of the Inn, the Silver queen of night has already sat on her throne mightily.
Ah, That’s right. I was sleeping after long hours or relentless working, I think of that as I get back on my feet and grabbed the door handle.
A lanky middle-aged man is already sitting next to the bed when I opened the door, it looks like he was doing nothing but because of my lack of knowledge on medical fields, but heavens knows.
“How’s her condition ?” I asked in a quiet whisper because I can’t have to wake someone
“Quite bad, It looks like She was exposed to Hallucinogen for a long time” He said in the same whisper, his fingers made a sign of O
She had been sleeping without any nutrition which in previous inspections was found that she was exposed to a large dose of Hallucinogen, but, I thank the Gods that she is okay.
“Well then, Thank you for your endeavor.” I bowed lightly, ready to fish out some more coins from my pocket.
“Yes, of course. I pray that She opens her eyes soon”
After saying that, He exits the room without further statements. Another one has gained my respect, even though some were rotten, golden apples are everywhere.
“Well, I really think I should have gone to the library more while going in service” I said to myself as I took a seat and unconciously rub my hand over the sleeping girl’s head, it’s soft, as expected of a beast-kin.
I let go of her head and start caressing her hair, it feels like silk even though She hadn’t taken any nutrition, they haven’t been malnourished in the slightest, her skin doesn’t even change in color.
“Forsooth, I need money to survive in this kind of society. But still, It’s not my priority to keep you alive, are you ?”
I let out quite a breath while contemplating, unnecessary thoughts was occupied my mind for a second “I think Young Lady was quite harsh on giving me a material on becoming a perfect butler…”
I closed my eyes as I realized my actions and released my hand in a panicky manner and placed it on my face. Hold the bow, Why am I thinking about the young miss to relate to Stella ? But…argh, bollocks.
I still remember the first impression I had that day clearly, it was “…What an imposing structure”. It was because I lived in a humble house back in the day rather in the castle because I dislike hectic places due to it’s being an obstruction in my studies.
“Excuse me, I am The one who was accepting the request” I knocked the front door once the guard let me in after a long inspection, actually, even when I was walking in, He stared at me with stern eyes.
“Yes ?” a Maid with a long brown hair opened the door and after confirming me, stepped aside from the door way
“Please get in, You are the adventurer which will be serving the master today, no ?”
And that’s how I met Rienne for the first time, next is about how I was scolded by The Master, called a brute for not having the proper etiquette and shabby appearance.
“Aaah~, That was a pain though. First, button the white shirt, then fix the waist coat and then attach the albert to the waistcoat. Then, make sure to wear a butler outfit with no wrinkles.”
They was so convinced that they won’t employ a beggar-like person, so I bought a few set of clothes for the both of us, whether if I want to or not.
10 days later, when I had been properly applied those to myself, up to coincidence, I found the master was troubled when I made a tea for him.
He likes the refreshing tea, so I served him the tea leaves I gathered back in the day. He had been sighing so it was easy to tell
“is Aura still in her room ?”
Rienne, who is the head maid answered while bowing her head. I heard that The Duke has a daughter, but I don’t think I have seen her anywhere when I browsed my memory.
He let out a sigh again “That Girl has been like that since forever…”
“By The Way, How old is Young Lady Aura by this year, Master ?” I asked presumptuously, without any awareness of my place which resulted in many sharp stares directed at me
“And what do you plan on doing by knowing her age ?” The master said as one of those stares
“I will try to bring her out of her safe haven, of course. It will be troublesome if no heir could abide your seat if you happen to be…sick”
I regretted that day greatly. But praise the gods that I was given by multiple talent of Psychic preception and large balls to endure that dignified man’s stare.
After that, He carried on giving me the information in a suspecting tone, Her year of birth, day, et cetera. including her habits. Her favorite food was described by Rienne and it turns out that She is a sweet-toothed girl.
“Ah, My forehead still hurt from before” I smiled smugly in satisfaction, No pain no gain was a satisfactory indeed.
The door was thrown to my face as the result of my constant bugging but set the gears into motion, first being a big brother figure, second, making her interested in me, such as providing cuisines she had never seen before or by doing a flashy cooking in her room.
It took me 3 days to finally get her out, and by the night She finally stepped out. The Master congratulated me while rubbing his face against mine, saying that my face is like a girl when the hair is being neatly let down. I asked for the use of torture room after cutting off my hair in a spiky style albeit with a declination of the bigger reward.
“Well, That is why Humans are so interesting”
I rubbed her head once again as I looked at the window. Some sunrays has pierced through faintly, another working day has come.
“Well, then. Stella. I am off”
Just when I was about to take my hands off her, The Girl that is supposed to be in comatose state suddenly grasped my hand with her little hands. It is as if She hasn’t been under drugs but simply roll in her sleep.
I smiled faintly as my hand didn’t try to shake her off unlike in those memory, The Bandits I killed on the way to Zipangu, He pleaded for his life but I mercilessly gave him a coup de grace and uses his wounded friend as a boat, but because of Stella, I now know that I am still a being with some humanity.
“Can’t be helped then, I will take you along”
I end up getting to the guild with her on my back. A white cloth used as a blanket is tied around her body because dressing her in her sleep is a grave crime.
“Oh, it’s quite early for you…Well, carrying your kid and all”
“She is not my kid alright ?”
I had expected no one to greet me, but suddenly, a bright smile beamed over from the counter from the sleepy-head clerk from before.
“ Well, is there any high-paying subjugation quest ? “ I said while surpressing my surprise, I might earn a punch or two if I say something inappropiate.
“There’s one. check the bulletin board, it’s a bit hard though”
I turn to the bulletin board at the right side of the room, there are certainly one new paper posted among the old ones. Stroke with curiosity, I took a look at it. The pay is 30 Asuryan Platinum coins with indefinite time.
“a Raging Dragon is on the loose, Aid needed. It looks like some pretty high bounty.”
“Yeah, and do you plan on taking it ?”
“Of course I am”
“Do you have a party yet ?”
“Not yet, Do I need to ?”
The situation degrades relatively quickly, as I inspected the table of contents while pondering about a party, some thoughts came into mind, but I forgot about as soon as an irritated sigh broke the silence.
“You really…do you plan to take on a dragon barehanded ?” she said while scratching her head, looking irritated with her eyebrows twitched
“Well, if I must”
After a scolding and some remedial lessons from her, She updated my card using magic that replaces the newbie word with Intermediate-class Adventurer, a title of “Sharp Butler” was attached to the blank space of the card.
“Well, then. Good luck, and don’t be failing your quest, as an Intermediate that uses UTILITY more.” She said as she went to the back of the building, feeling rather hostile to me.
“What’s with that woman…” I treaded out of the Guild office while wondering about why She is so unreasonable, I can kill most preys in a hunt with my barehands but…
Right now, the last thing I remember is I was being yelled at. What an absurd thinking of getting a weapon with a savings of mere 35 silver coins, but at this point, I have to knock anyway.
“Ah hey, Do you need something ?”
“Yes, is this shop on business ?”
“Of course, get in !”
A Young man finally answered my pleas and let me into his workshop. His body has been toned considerably from doing all the tempering with the workshop unbearably hot with the building only covered by heat-resistant brickworks.
“So, What would you have ?”
“Eh…Some stroller ? No,no,no. That’s not it…”
“Excuse me ?”
His amicable smile suddenly turned into an unbelieving expression.
“Well, you see. I need something to hold this girl while I’m fighting you see…”
Some Blacksmith were open in this time of the day, but most of them shooed me away with insults. In almost all settings, I could refer to the book on how to deal with them. But being an Adventurer now made that referrance into a pile of garbage.
“Ah, I get it.”
Unexpectedly, it came to a compromise. The Blacksmith lightly nudge his hand with another while looking at me, what a relief, someone does actually understand my circumtances.
“You need something so you want to keep that kid alive right ? This will do” He went to the wall and took out a tool, a backpack-like thing made out of metal. It has holes that allows one to take tools inside easily
“Well, you are unexpectedly well-versed.”
Just when I was about to take that thing, He pulled it from my reach and because of no place to put Stella on, I couldn’t make use of sudden movements.
“This is not for free”
He made a gesture of thumb and index finger rubbing each other that makes me frown
“Well then…could I buy some weapons ? for 3 silver coins ?”
“3 Silver coins eh…”
He held his chin and flicked his fingers in a short notice “I get it, Here, you can have this”
He scurried inside after handing me the backpack, I can’t help but not to see in puzzled mind. In another minute, He returned with a blade in a scabbard.
“This could sell for as cheap as 3 silver, how about it ?”
I see, 3 Silver. Totally not suspicious-not. What is this ? I don’t wanna pay 3 silver for a broken blade ! Because usually, normal blade would cost for around 7 Silvers now with this backpack, this has become quite suspicious.
“Okay…Unsheath the blade please”
But still, my mind still insists to buy a blade but my body soon compromised to check it first.
“Hehe, just see.” He snickered before pulling the blade. The Silver gleam shines on the blade like a shining luster, it was indeed, not one of a broken blade.
“Ho, This is a good blade indeed.”
I picked the blade and examines it while accidentally let out an admiration. When I swung it in trial, it also weighs right.
“How about it ? You are up ?”
I reached into my purse and paid him and went out through the door. Now it feels like I’m a proper adventurer, although I’m still lacking the experience as one.
I decided to look around the town after I saw that the counter was still preparing. I had never explored this city ever since I arrived here also, so I thought I have no reason to not to.
While my legs and eyes are doing their job, I thought of how I should get home, True, Mercuria is a country among the islands and in the warzone, but the fee is a ridiculous amount of 300 Gold coin, it made me despairs but when I met an incredibly important people,I saluted them. I must not forget my manners even when I was sight-seeing, after a trivial bickering, The Duke tapped my shoulders and tell me to work hard.
I do intend to work hard, but this city has a terrible managering system. Seeing these long lines will have popped out someone’s eyes, but luckily it’s my turn now.
“Well, I think I should get go-ello gentlemen.”
Suddenly, before I put my Adventurer’s identification card, a latticed window covered the counter. a characteristic sound of Halbers hitting each other sounded, then The counter keeper spoke with a serious tone
“All adventurers are ordered to be prepared for the incoming wave”
I retract any statement saying I was lucky, It could only be described as Presumptuous to The Heavens that seems to wish that I spend my time here a little longer.
“Nee-san, from here, I will be going alone”
I donned the midnight blue colored imperial court dress and put the hat on, Although I was just resuscitated, but if one is summoned to The Royal court, Personal feelings are trivial.
I casted “Wind Release:Storm rider”, a variant of “Gale” for an uneven terrain and cold air, I even breath in the air to make sure my lungs would hold out.
“Well then, see you later”
As I confirmed my conditions, I nodded and dashed with breakneck speed towards my destination.a shrine at the coast.