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New Game – Chapter 27

The birdie that doesn’t chirp – Part 3

The approaching twilight started to paint the sky red.
As promised, Takumi and his comrades were bringing Lise home, and were currently walking in the streets after descending from the gondola.

“Thank you for accompanying me home.”

The archbishop bowed her head, and Takumi shook his hand.

“I always keep my promises. I’m sorry I interrupted your research.”

“I do not mind. If I could, I would have loved to have also a taste of Mirta’s dessert.”

“Yeah… she fled in a hurry for the ‘puppet show’.”

Mirta was glad that Lise enjoyed the food, and started to prepare even a dessert, but she noticed that it was getting late, and darted off without finishing it.

“The doll maker had finished his job, but she couldn’t fail the play.”

“I would have never expected that you worked even as doll makers and as a theatrical company.”

“Ah, well, we plan to do a bit of everything.”

“…You are strange people. I heard that you originally were an illegal company of the slums, so I thought you only did scary jobs.”

Karin wore a complicated expression while looking at Lise’s slightly shining eyes.

“…Takumi, do you really want her to believe that?”

“Why not? She didn’t directly ask, anyway.”

The two talked in whispers, so that the child couldn’t hear.
He used a code.
The puppet show was actually a delivery of smuggled goods, the doll maker was the deal, and the puppets were the method of trading, which consisted in hiding the things within a false corpse in a coffin.
Vatel came up with all of this, and only Suzuran members could understand the real meaning of those words.
Karin was sorry to see that Lise was trusting them, but this type of job wasn’t something that a child like her had to know about. Although the corpse they used wasn’t real, she would have shown her indignation and scolded them for using such blasphemous methods.

“So, Lise, how was your first time in the slums?”

After their meal, Takumi and the others took her for a walk.
She couldn’t see the slums from the cathedral or the castle because it laid behind the top and middle layers. That’s why, time permitting, she wanted to visit as many places as she could.

“Now you’ve seen something you can’t just look from up there.”

“…Yes. I saw the embodiment of hell on earth.”

Remembering what she saw, Lise let out a deep, heavy sigh.

“Plenty of drunk people sleeping in their own vomit and excrement in broad daylight… Stallholders and seamen randomly fighting among each other while being surrounded by people who instigated them to violence… Children taking advantage of that to steal goods… Are the slums always this chaotic?”

“Nah, usually it’s even worse.”

“Right. The sleeping ones would yell at the fighting ones to shut up, and things end up in huge brawls.”

“Yep! Then the guards join in and quell everything!”

“…Admittedly, I can easily imagine it.”

The archbishop’s tone was resigned, but her expression somewhat relaxed as her gaze grew distant, like she was seeing a faraway land.

“This is the worst, most awful place I have ever seen…”

Then, her voice became a whisper.

“…but I cannot help being envious of it.”

She lived in a completely different world, and although she was still admiring the townscape around her, she ended up lowering her gaze.

“You are all so free. Even the pervert bird and the sultry drakonid are, despite being demi-humans, so existences that should not be able to have fun and be that noisy given the hostile environment surrounding them.”

Her lips bent slightly into a little smile as she remembered the carefree behavior of that duo.

“The people living in the slums are poor and struggle to survive, pursuing the few choices they have… still, they have not lost the freedom in their hearts.”

Her answer took a philosophical direction while her smile became slightly bigger.

“Seeing people acting like that was… really nice.”

Resignation and a dim shade of envy painted her face, along with hope.
Seeing her, Takumi rubbed her head.

“If you’re envious, why don’t you also try to act like us?”

“Because… I cannot do it.”

Her words leaked out her lips as tears streamed down her eyes.

“The caged birdie… will never be allowed to chirp freely.”

The moment she stared down while balling her hands, an unexpected voice reached her.

“You catch up quickly, Lise Crest.”

Her entire body started to tremble.

“How dare this repulsing trash take my guest for a walk?”

A thick arrogance permeated those words, and soon, the speaker stepped out.

“Lise… we couldn’t find you in the cathedral and grew quite worried.”

“…I am sorry, Lord Kiad.”

Seeing her apologetically bowing, he snorted.

“Now… the thugs that kidnapped the archbishop deserve an exemplary punishment…”

A simple gesture of his hand, and a lot of soldiers stepped out while drawing their swords. They were the pride of Richtert: the magic knights.

“P-Please, wait a minute! They did not do anything wrong! I–”

“Who said you could speak?”

He growled and grabbed her by her slender neck.
The child struggled in agony as her airway was being crushed.

“You are very wise despite your young age. I thought you knew your place, and you even said all that just a minute ago, but you probably weren’t educated enough…!”

He easily lifted her up and forcefully threw her away from Takumi and the others, who watched the scene without moving an inch.

“Oh, weren’t you good friends? I thought you’d try to help her.”

“…Do you really think we’d fall for a cheap provocation like that? You need to come up with something better.”

“Hah… I didn’t know trash could be intelligent. If only you tried to touch me, we’d have washed the streets with your blood.”

A crooked smile cracked on his face as he lightly prodded Lise, who was lying on the floor.

“Look what you did by taking what’s mine with you… It’s hard to see her making such a face… no one even asked for this.”

“…You have quite the status to treat her like something belonging to you.”

“I know, right? You all belong to Fortesea. And sooner or later, everything will.”

Takumi quietly listened while glaring at him.

“Lise, get up and hurry back home.”

“Yes, Lord Kiad… Thank you for sparing them.”

“Well, I must consider a plea from someone who always does what we ask. Also… I finally got something off my chest.”

He smiled sadistically in front of her, whose aching body was trembling in fear.

“We’ll see again each other in the match. Enjoy your last days, filthy trash.”

Spitting harsh words, Kiad turned on his heels and started to walk away, followed by his men and Lise, who looked at Takumi and his friends for a brief moment. A gloomy shadow was cutting her bruised face as her lips moved in silence.

I had fun.

Then, she silently walked away.

“Well done for controlling yourself, Kunon.”

“I’m not so stupid to jump into a fight without thinking of the consequences! You’re talking to a wolf, you know?! Still…”

She gripped the hilt of her black daggers and whispered in a low, guttural voice.

“…that wasn’t nice to see.”

An aura of blood-lust formed around her, while Karin flicked her hair back annoyed.

“I totally agree. Even though I’m used to see stuff like that, it still gets on my nerves.”

“Yeah, I know where you two are coming from… but now there’s something we know for sure.”

Takumi started to tap on his temple as he repeated Kiad’s words.

“Although he said they couldn’t find the archbishop in the cathedral, the rest of the city was too quiet. He didn’t mobilize the guards or his personal army to search for her, and that bragger didn’t look worried in the slightest.”

“…So, he doesn’t consider her that valuable?”

“No, in that case he wouldn’t have come all the way here. Also, he forced her to go home with violence. You know better than me who gets treated like that, don’t you?”

He used violence to bend her to his will.
Despite not being a slave, she acted in the very same way, and that meant that there was a reason she had to be like that.

“Now, how could he find us? A simple estimation of the path we were going to take wouldn’t be accurate, and he said that we were good friends with her… Almost like…”

He then stopped his finger.

“I see… that’s why that was written.”

“You mean that personal request…?”

“Yeah. It was only one sentence.”

A few days before, they received a letter.
There weren’t details of any sort in it, so they had to blindly search for information, but the only thing they found was a sentence that looked like a request of help:
The caged birdie will never be allowed to chirp freely.
Takumi kept thinking about what that could mean.

“…This isn’t an easy request.”

“Indeed… It’s the archbishop we’re talking about. Contrary to slaves or ordinary people, we can’t just kidnap her, and she can’t run away by herself either. Anyone who would help her would be considered a traitor from the country and executed.”

Being the archbishop meant having a certain authority, and also be subjected to some very strict rules.
Even running away for a short time would be difficult, since the Fortesea’s shadows might appear at any time, instilling a growing fear in the evader every day.

“She really is in a cage of steel.”

“And there’s more, right?”

“Yeah. They’re earning quite the profit from her.”

Saying that, Takumi smiled amused, and the others looked at him and did the same.

“Is it doable, Master?”

“Of course. I wondered why she acted in such a roundabout way, but now that I’ve understood it, we can act whenever we want.”

Turning on his heels, Takumi took the way back the slums while tapping on his temple.

“Karin, once we’re home, reorganize the information we’ve gathered. Kunon, you come with me. I’ll let you vent a bit.”

“…Will you let me kill that guy?”

“Something like that.”

“Really?! Yaaay! Takumi finally told me I can kill someone!”

“You know how messy things will become if you kill the capital’s top authority?”

Seeing Kunon drawing her swords and slashing the air happily, he grabbed her from her nape.

“Owww… but I wanna squash him so haaard…”

“I already told you that killing will only put an end to someone. Killing for revenge makes you fill better at first, but deep down, your heart will always search for forgiveness…”

As he scolded her, his lips bent again.

“But I’ll never forgive Kiad. I’ll not have mercy. Every single cell in his body must scream in agony and be forgotten in the darkest pit of loneliness, otherwise I won’t feel at ease.”

Lise’s aching face as she walked away flashed in front of Takumi’s pitch-black eyes again, and the words she couldn’t say out loud resounded in his ears.
I had fun.
With her image still burned into his sight, Takumi faced the others.

“It’s been a while since we got something to do in our territory. Let’s go.”

“Recently, we only had to work as a major company… I’m glad you didn’t forget about our main activity.”

“I’m perfectly fine with destroying everything!”

“Feel free to do that in the match. This time we must tell Mirta what’s going on. We need to define some details, and she knows how to do that very well.”

“Roger. How should I tell her?”

“I guess telling her directly will work just fine.”

Another smile appeared on his face.

“Let’s go save Lise Crest.”


<Prev | Index | Next>

4+

Guild Master – Chapter 29

 

The hero’s lie and the tiger-race’s feast

I identified the two bodyguards from the guild cards they brought with them.

They were part of the ‘Purple Scorpion’, a guild located on the 5th street that was famous for the high number of assassins and bodyguards among its members. There were many dangerous guys in there.

Lang and the others were Vinceburg’s subordinates, and their personal story wasn’t exactly ‘clean’. Plenty of nobles were affiliated with the obscure part of the capital, to a worrisome point.

“We should punish everyone, right? Like, even if they’re from some guild, right?”
“Well, yeah. Lang and the other guys asked for help, but accepting a request isn’t compulsory.”
“You always listen carefully to the details of requests and value their worth first, don’t you…? Well, you often end up accepting them, though.”

My guild couldn’t deal with every type of request, so I always made sure to make the right choices. Failing might prove fatal.

Still, its greatest point was information gathering, which allowed me to prepare properly in advance. Thanks to that, we hardly had problems with dirty and bothersome jobs.

◆◇◆

I contacted my guild and asked to send here enough people to ‘escort’ Lang and the others to our closest base. In the meanwhile, Aileen went to pay the inn’s keeper for the room’s repaying fee.
She also helped me moving the fainted guys, although her help wasn’t necessary.

I couldn’t say that the reward for our actions was the country’s peace, but we were trying to prevent a civil war, so I was sure we could profit from the situation.

“Okay, I’m going to Cody’s place. Will ya come back home for now, Dick?”

Her question made me think. My body was in a safe place, but Mylarka and Riko were probably tired of waiting.

I and Mylarka were invited to the elder’s house, where the tiger-race arranged a banquet. They all started to drink, and as the mood grew livelier, they entertained us with artistic performances, but Mylarka quickly grew tired of them and tried to talk to me, since our hosts were busy partying.

At that moment, my body was pouring some drink into her glass, but since I essentially kept giving monosyllabic answers, she blatantly said it was no fun talking with me.

Yeah, it was probably better to go back, but the runes of Small Spirit were still active on Aileen’s chest…

“Dick, you heard?”
“Y-Yeah, sure. I’ll go back.”
“Nice. Take care of Mylarka. By the way, will you come back tomorrow…? Maybe in the morning after a sleepless night?”
“Do you really think she’d let me? I’m not a beast, you know.”
“How adorable, you didn’t even try to deny it~! So cute, I’m getting excited!”
“D-Deny what, exactly? I…”
“Yeah, okay, just go back now. I’m sure Mylarka is missing you.”

She was probably right, but I couldn’t imagine Mylarka missing me. Still, she was probably in a bad humor right now, so…

“Thank you, Aileen. You are a great help.”
“Uh… Y-Yeah. You don’t have to thank me like that. I’m a freelancer, but also a member of your guild.”

She said while touching her hair, which, as her blood was a mix of human’s and spirit’s, had a pale, washed out red color, almost resembling a peach’s.

“I’m going. Why don’t we drink all together after this job’s over? Let’s invite Yuma, otherwise she’ll feel lonely.”
“Yes, nice idea. Sometimes sitting back and taking it easy is good.”

She smiled and put her hood over her head, then exited from the window.
She climbed on the roof and jumped from a building to another. My philosophy was to never stand out, and she always tried her best to respect that. None of her cat-like steps could be heard in the night.

◆◇◆

Cody lived in the part of the capital where the families of the most important knights lived, northeast of the capital.

Aileen was faster and freer to move than a horse-drawn carriage, and after some time, she finally reached Cody’s house.

“That’s his room, right…? Hop!”

She jumped on the garden’s tree, and from there on Cody’s room veranda.

“Uff… Cody, you there~?”

She lightly opened the window, and he approached her.

“Good evening, Aileen. I keep repeating you that the rear door is open, but you never change…”
“Hahaha, sorry! Thing is, I’m in a hurry and want to ask you something.”
“I had the feeling that Dick was going to call for me someday soon.”

He let her in. His clothes, armor and sword were laying on the bed, and there wasn’t a single speck of dust in the entire room.

When the King granted him his title, he was provided with a silver armor and the ancient longsword with the royal family’s crest carved on it. He never used the sword in battle, but always wore the armor.

“Do you wash yourself before going to bed? Your hair is wet.”
“Yes. Or rather, today was the first day of practice this month, so I sweated quite a little.”

He was wearing short pants, and bandages wrapped the upper part of his body. It wasn’t a look fitting a knight.

After he finished the maintenance of his equipment, he took a bath. That was his habit, both as an SSS rank adventurer and as a former member of the expedition party.

Still, something in him changed from back then.

“Cody, do you wear that thing every time you exit the bathroom even at home? You should take it easy every once in a while. I mean, everyone grows sooner or later.”
“It’s not a big deal, although lately it is becoming hard to do it by myself… but I am still grateful to you for teaching me how to put this on.”
“You completely took me off guard back then~! But in a way or another, I knew about you. Let’s call it woman’s sixth sense.”
“Hahaha! I don’t think that really fits you, Aileen. But I shouldn’t be the one to say that.”
“Oh, c’mon! You can’t take words back, you know? Anyway, I know you have a lot in your mind for keeping this secret since you joined the expedition party, but… I think you should let Dick know. At least, as a friend.”

Said Aileen while pointing at the bandages wrapping Cody’s body, which was hardened by exhausting training.

“Seriously, you just have to get used to it. You are supposed to wrap your chest when using a bow, anyway.”
“The bowstring would hit it, huh…? You don’t look happy, anyway.”
“This is nothing to worry about. I decided to do this. Also, it is troublesome if I don’t wrap it before training.”

Cody wiped his hair dry with a cloth, exposing his white nape, and Aileen let out a sigh.

“Why has Dick still not noticed about you? I and Mylarka didn’t at first, but it became evident with time.”
“Because he trusts me.”

After he invited his friend to take a seat, he put on the undershirt he used when wearing the armor, which he left on the table, and discerning something strange about his body became impossible for anyone.

“…Sorry, Cody. I might have said something I shouldn’t have to Dick… Like that you care a lot about him…”
“What is the problem with that, Aileen? I really think that, and I feel the same for you guys, His Majesty, and Albein’s citizens.”
“You always sound so honorable… So, if we say that you love Dick, how would you feel?”

He didn’t answer at first, but little by little, his mouth curved into a faint.

“Even then, he will never notice. He didn’t in the past, and he doesn’t now.”
“That’s also true… Cody, do you really want to hide it from him forever?”
“At first, I thought I needed to lie. I should be coherent with it.”
“But you know there’s no reason to keep this charade up! Didn’t you say you trust him?!”
“…Yes, I did. That is exactly why I will never betray his trust.”

Aileen struggled to find the right words, but soon gave up and took off her overcoat, leaving it on the chair’s back. Then, she took the water jug on the table and filled two glasses, chugging hers down right away.
Cody accepted the other one and gulped half of it down, exactly like he used to do with the Silver Mug’s ale.

“Cody, why did you do that? I always wanted to hear your reason, but it’s been five years already… Please, tell me.”
“…It was something I decided when I was very young. Meaningless.”
“No, I don’t think it was. You’ve always been a serious person, so you reached this conclusion after thinking a lot about it. What was it?”

He gulped down the rest of his water and met Aileen’s gaze.

“…I had a brother. His name was Leon, and he was an SS rank adventurer quite famous in my city.”
“Leon…? Yes, that sounds a bell. There aren’t more than twenty SS rank adventurers in the country, after all.”
“He was part of a branch of the White Goat, so rumors about him might have reached even the capital… given his bad reputation and infamous conduct.”

Cody’s expression darkened in a moment, and slowly but perceptibly, the grasp on the empty glass in his hand started to tighten.

“He was the kind of person who played with women’s heart. He used them. Party members or nobles, their status was insignificant. Maybe he did that for the best of our family, but it was easy for him, thanks to him being good looking.”
“Well… if your brother was like that, I feel like I can understand you.”
“Then… he laid his hands even on a girl who took care of me since I was a child… Of course, he did not want to marry her, so when they separated, I got punished on his behalf and was forced to move to another city.”

Aileen lost her words as she peered into her friend’s face, who showed her a gentle smile.

“This is a story of the past, but what I learned from watching him… If I ever became an adventurer, I wanted the members of my party to be all the same gender, or at least to be balanced between boys and girls. If there was only a boy or only a girl, I was sure that would have brought a lot of troubles. I knew it was stupid, but I was just too obstinate, and I could not even imagine that there were a lot of boys in the world that did not act like him.”
“…Then you joined the expedition party… right?”
“I am still ashamed of myself for this, but I could not trust Dick at first, probably because I was well aware of his strength.”

He brought a hand to his chest and felt his heart racing as he dug into his memories.

“I was with four people who were almost as strong as me… but I couldn’t understand why Dick was the strongest among you, and what made him so.”
“Yeah, that’s a mystery still unsolved… He isn’t physically strong like me, but no matter what, he will find a way to win.”

Cody smiled at her comment and filled their glasses again with water.

“When we fought together, I felt sorry for doubting of him… but I am also glad for it. If I never lied, we might not be friends right now.”
“…And with that lie, you even became the general of the Albein’s army. So, there is no turning back now, huh?”
“You strike where it hurts… My only desire was to protect this country’s people, and for that, I needed to become what I am now.”
“I admire how diligently you’re working. Even Mylarka and Yuma think the same, but we’re also worrying about you.”
“…Thank you, but I am fine. It is not hard on me, and I almost forgot about my lie.”

‘That’s just another lie’, whispered Aileen, but Cody didn’t hear her, or probably pretended not to, as he grabbed his sword and held it close to his chest like the first time they met.

“I want to be his sword, and I will slash down anything he wants.”
“…You really love him. But Dick wondered why you never let him touch your belly.”
“…If he ever found out, I would try to erase his memory… He must never know that I am…”

At that moment, his voice became a distant whisper, then disappeared along with the room.

“…ck. I have had enough… can’t you just come back here?!”

I could hear someone calling my name. My consciousness was drifting back to my body as my magic connection was cut.

◆◇◆

“…Nhhh… Soft…”
“Excuse me?! You fell on my legs as soon as you got on your feet! You are heavy, so get out!”
“Oh… I-I’m sorry, Mylarka…!”

The tiger-race was still partying, and there were over a hundred of them in the tent.
Sat on the place of honor were me and Mylarka, whose lap I was using as my cushion. It was a worthy opponent of Verlaine’s, and its unique softness made my head sink ever so slightly in it.

But despite the good feeling, I couldn’t just stay like that forever, so I had to get up.

Until the runes of Small Spirit where on Aileen, I could hear her conversation with Cody. I needed Verlaine’s help to force my consciousness back to my body before the time ran out.

Still, even though I knew I would end up eavesdropping them, I heard the part about Cody’s brother, and also things I was supposed to never know.

Leon, his brother, was a philander, and that brought Cody to not trust me at first.

That’s why he lied. But… was it necessary?

Also, seeing the bandages wrapping his body and how he dried his hair made me sank into a deep sense of guilt.

Cody is a man with beautiful hair, smooth skin and cannot be delusional.
I grabbed the drink I poured for Mylarka before and chugged it down.
Yeah, I must be drunk.

“…You do not look well. Riko, can you bring more drinks?”
“Yes. This is fire beer, a drink from dwarves. Watch out when you drink it, you’ll feel like your body’s burning.”
“Thank you… Ugh, this isn’t good… there’s something wrong in the recipe, but if you wait three days, I’ll bring you the real deal.”
“Ah, Masked man, you know how to make good drinks?! Amazing! I’ll go tell the Elder!”

She dashed away excitedly.
Damn, I should’ve stayed silent…
Mylarka looked at me with a strange expression.

“There’s something wrong with you. Let’s talk about it later. Now it’s late to go back home, so I asked if we could spend the night here.
“Y-Yeah, it’s okay… thank you, Mylarka.”

I thought about it. They’d probably provide only one tent for the two of us.
As I vainly searched for a way to point that problem out, Mylarka started to sip a glass of something blended with fruit juice, and while my mind went astray, I left myself entranced by the unfolding dances of the tiger-race’s women.


<Prev | Index | Next>

1+

New Game – Chapter 26

TL note: heartfelt thanks to Jethro Salim, who donated twenty euros for this series!


The birdie that doesn’t chirp – Part 2

As the gondola floated down the river, the elegant townscape around them gradually turned into the slums’.
People tend to relax when they return to places they know. On the other hand, those who set foot into a new territory are usually excited and curious, and it’s exactly that curiosity that dissipates their caution, pushing even the most careful of lambs into the lion’s den…

“I-I… should have stayed home.”

Lise was now in the dining room of Suzuran, trembling slightly.

“What Her Majesty said was real… Scary people kidnapped me when I was alone…”

“Hey, who’s scary? Don’t go around tarnishing people’s reputation.”

“…I am sure she is talking about you, Takumi.”

Karin, who had finished her work, was taking a break and sighed deeply.

“I can’t believe you kidnapped the archbishop…”

“I didn’t kidnap her, but only fueled her interest and got her to come with me without specifying where we would go.”

“So, you are not only a crook, but you also tricked a child, huh…?”

“I am not a child. I can go back alone anytime.”

Lise tried to put up a brave front, but her voice was weaker than usual.

“I already told you we’re gonna bring you back later. Relax.”

“I-Is that so…? Are you not lying?”

“No, I’m not. You said you never visited the city, so I wanted to let you see the one part you would have never bothered to see in your entire life.”

“C-Can you not decide everything by yourself, please?!”

The archbishop showed her anger, and so did Mirta, who was listening to their exchange.

“She is right. You cannot keep doing whatever you want, and stop involving people in your moody choices.”

“…How can I take you seriously? You prepared all of this with a huge grin on your face, Mirta.”

“I-I was not! I was only trying to cook what you suggested and… ended up doing too much!”

Bashfully pressing her fingertips together, she lowered her gaze from the dining room’s long desk, which was covered with food.
Stew, omelets, doria, gratin, hamburgers, fried chips, pizzas, curry, various fried food, tonkatsu, fried prawns, udon, carbonara, napolitan, sandwiches, french toasts, pancakes… and many more.
She was used to cook large quantities of food, given how many people their company counted, but she asked Takumi for advice to expand the menu further, and things turned out like that.

“This looks like a family restaurant…”

“A family… what?”

“Nothing, don’t mind me. You gathered quite a lot of ingredients, huh?”

“Gaitsu asked his contacts to help him, and they made him seal a business deal with a new sea route, which stocked a lot of foreign ingredients. He had to go through quite a lot of troubles for it.”

Mirta showed a radiant, proud smile. She was indeed a passionate cook, which was wonderful, but it wasn’t a great characteristic for a leader.
Still, in front of her effort, Lise looked amazed at the delicacies spread in front of her.

“There is plenty of food I have never seen before… May I have a taste?”

“Yes. I never cooked these before, but feel free to help yourself.”

“I will.”

Lise grabbed a spoon and timidly brought some stew to her mouth. Then, she repeated the same motion again and again, in silence, like she was in a trance.
Seeing that she was liking it, Mirta’s face brightened.

“Lise, would you like some hamburgers?”

“Mh, yes, please. I would love to taste many of these dishes.”

“I am glad to hear that. Let me give you some, then.”

Suzuran’s leader started to take small portions from various plates for her guest.
The usual image of a dignified leader was nowhere to be seen, but she was honestly enjoying the moment, so no one said anything.

“But… is consuming this meal not impossible for us alone?”

“Probably… I’d feel bad to have any leftovers, and Karin doesn’t eat much…”

In front of them was food for dozens of persons, and many of the plates were main dishes and fried ones, so they were quite heavy on the stomach.

“Ah, do not worry. There are some voracious members in our company.”

“You mean Kunon?”

“Are you speaking of Kunon?”

“Yes, like Kunon… Ah, Lewin told me he and Aigle will come here after they finish their work.”

Karin and Takumi stiffened at her words.

“Karin, you got it?”

“Yes. What if Aigle tries to do something?”

“Make sure he can’t move. If necessary, feel free to beat him until he passes out.”

“Roger.”

“Why would you do that?!”

“Prevention is better than cure. We can’t make him meet L–”

The door flung open, interrupting Takumi.

“Woah! There’s a lotta food!”

“There really is, Instructor! Is this aroma not a bliss for the nose?!”

“Keep it down, Aigle! Otherwise I’ll pluck your wings!”

“Ahaaah! That would be a real honor for me!”

“Then, Sis Mirta will cook them!”

The three demi-humans entered the room, and as soon Kunon saw Takumi and Karin, she trotted to them.

“Hey Karin, Takumi! Are you back already?”

“Yeah… we came back to eat. Why are you with those two, anyway?”

“I met them on my way here! I just finished training the other kids!”

She happily answered, and Takumi hid his face with his hands.
It was bad. He didn’t expect that turn of events, and now it was too late to prevent them, especially her, from coming here.
The next moment, Aigle opened wide his bloodshot eyes and sniffed the air deeply.

“I smell an unknown girl.”

“Damn you, stop sniffing out people.”

“I can prey on targets with both my eyes and nose!”

“Can you?! For Filia’s sake… your super-senses are a hassle in these cases.”

Ignoring Takumi’s shock, Aigle looked around to track the source of the smell, and after locating it munching food nonchalantly at the table, he slowly walked and stopped beside Lise.
His overwhelming frame towered over her, who looked at him puzzled.
The next moment, something changed in his expression, which became more elegant, and he kneeled.

“Forgive my rudeness, Silver-haired Lady… would you be interested in riding on my shoulders?”

“…Riding on your shoulders?”

“Yes. If possible, I would love your soft, silky legs to swing in front of my face… Legally speaking, enjoying bare legs should not be a problem!”

“I believe your death will unburden the world.”

“NHHH! So glad I was abused by such a soft voiceee!”

As Aigle shout his torrent of feelings at the sky, Lise turned to Takumi.

“Slave merchant, what is this revolting and twisted bird’s problem?”

“Long story short, he’s a pervert.”

“…Thank you for putting it this clearly.”

“W-Well, Aigle is a bit gross, but he is also a good guy… Do not mind him and let’s keep eating before it gets cold.”

“Lady Mirta screwed my service… but this feels good in its own way!”

Paying him no more mind, everyone started to dig in.

“Oi, Silver-haired Missy! This curry is hella good, ya know?! It’s so spicy it reaches even my blazing heart!”

“…I cannot handle spicy food.”

“Dahhahaha! Probably it’s still too early for your taste!”

“Lady, try this fried chicken meat, then! Delicious juices spread in your mouth when you bite it!”

“…Bird, do you consume your own race’s flesh?”

“I descend from hawks, so, technically, I am no cannibal!”

The two demi-human’s loudness and energy softened the mood, and probably resonated with Lise, whose cold expression seemed to warm a little.
Observing her from the distance, Takumi smiled.

“Karin, make sure those two don’t get carried away.”

“I know… You really are soft-hearted.”

Karin was surprised by his choice, but got happily closer to them the next moment.
Kunon, who was eating at the table, rose on her feet after seeing her friend approaching, and walked to her Master.

“Takumi~! As you said, the Captain gave me these!”

“Oh, great job. Are you sure they are two different types?”

“Yes! They’re the oldest and the latest style’s magic tools!”

Saying that, she took a couple of bracelets from her pouch.
They were magic tools provided to the guards: both were made of gold and silver and had a peculiar shape, and words carved on them.
Takumi tried to analyze them by sight alone.

“I see. Writing the code with gold on holy silver speeds magic transmission up… and using the Veril continent’s language, which comes from the ancient Centaria, boosts the output power… huh?”

“Woooah! Could you tell only by looking?”

“Well, I was in charge of those magic tools and law formulas.”

“Didn’t you say they resemble some of the machines you have in your country?”

“Yeah, only a little bit. If I think of magic as electricity and law formulas as circuits, I can get a grasp of it.”

Magic tools weren’t that different from his former world’s machines.
They reproduced magic thanks to the materials they were made of, their shape, and the Law Formula that bound the components together.
Fundamentally, they controlled the flow of magic to reproduce the desired effect.

“But this is closer to occult stuff than machines. Law Formulas are a mix of semiotics, iconography, and mainly allegorical hermeneutics, while magic’s concept is closer to Taoism and Chinese medicine.”

“I have no idea what you’re talking about!”

“Basically, there’s a lot of jumbled, unclear stuff. I could figure out some parts thanks to what I learned in my country, so I can potentially create a Law Formula that Richtert hasn’t still come up with.”

“Woah…! You really know a lotta things! I don’t wanna study more than I need to, and I prefer guessing than remembering!”

“I think you’re fine as you are, Kunon… so? What does your intuition tell you?”

Asked Takumi while staring at the magic tools, and the Hound frowned slightly.

“I’m not sure… but these are somewhat bad.”

“Bad?”

“It’s like… a drop of oil that melts into water… something like that?”

She started to think deeply as she couldn’t express her feeling clearly.

“Well, I’ll remember there’s something off. You demi-humans have incredible senses and can perceive a lot of things we can’t, so I’ll trust you.”

“Yaaay! So, can I go back eating now?!”

“You sure can! There’re lots of plates from my coun–”

“I wanna eat meat!”

“…Then try tonkatsu.”

Kunon grabbed a fork and pierced the tender, fox-like colored meat and brought it to her mouth, where it melted slowly as she chewed it.

“Nhhh~! It’s crispy but juicy, and the seasoning is perfectly made! The sauce’s flavor is richer and tastes a bit like apple, which also fixes the oil’s boring taste!”

“Try to express what you just felt like that.”

“I can talk about good food, but everything else is boring, so forget it! Gimme more!”

“Yeah, fine… Eat as much as you want.”

“Eeeh? I’m tired from all the work, so I want you to feed me.”

“…No? If you only want to stuff your stomach, shouldn’t you do it by yourself?”

He protested as he brought to her open mouth some food.

“Lieeege! I am really envious of what you are doiiing!”

“Masteeer! That’s not what a Master should dooo!”

“Shut your traps, bird-head and blockhead. If you two wanna do it, just do it.”

“Hoorayyy!”

“Hell yeeeah!”

As they pushed their fists together and let out cries of joy, Kunon turned her face away.

“Forget it. Aigle is too noisy, and Lewin is too sultry.”

“Nnnhhh! Instructor, abuse me more, please!”

“Sis Kunon, drive a hot shot into my mouth!”

As they asked for some good, they felt a tight grasp on their shoulders.

“You… know what will happen if you dare to touch her, right?”

“Guys… if you keep yelling like that, you will ruin our meal, you know?”

Mirta and Karin were grinning as they towered over them.

“If you want, I can pluck the feathers of your forehead and write ‘idiot’ on it.”

“Ah, this frying pan is still really hot…but you like hot things, don’t you, Lewin?”

The next moment, the two demi-humans prostrated while begging for forgiveness.


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6+

Monsters’ Guild – Chapter 31

TL note: I don’t like beating around the bush: we are dropping this series.
We humbly apologize for all the readers who followed it so far, but nothing will change our mind.

The reasons are simple. First, I keep falling behind with my schedule, and this is starting to build stress on me. My hands are already full with other projects (all of which I find more fun than this one), and I don’t want to keep limping on my schedule like I’m doing for the past… two, maybe three months? Also, if I can be brutally honest, the more I translated this story, the less I liked it.
My editor feels the same for it, so we both decided to stop now.

Probably, in the next few days, I’ll update this series’ consistency guide for the last time, then leave behind this translation. We warmly invite any new translator interested in picking this series up to contact us, so that we can link their translation of the next chapter both here and in the project page.

Currently, we are not planning to do the same for any other series.
Again, sorry for this sudden decision, but I need to free my hands from those projects I am not enjoying or that are simply very time-consuming.

Thank you for understanding, and enjoy the last chapter of this first volume!


Everyone’s home

“It’s finally over”

“It really is!”

Lamia got closer to Raiz as she answered energetically.

“Our new home…”

It was way bigger then the old building, and it was solid enough to not get easily destroyed by another storm.

“Thinking about everyone’s needs was hard… but we finally did it!”

Raiz was overcome with emotions as tears started rolling down his cheeks.

“Finally…! Goodbye wall-less house!”

“That would be innovative, though…”

Lety said that as a joke, but she was impressed by the idea. The rainy season in Dekush brought along many tempests, so the carpenters had to come up with ways to prevent the houses to break down.
Raiz and his monsters had lived in there with simple cloths as walls and doors, something very old-fashioned even for the oldest people in Dekush.

“Our customers will finally stop looking at me suspiciously! I have my house and office again!”

The proof of their authenticity was hanging on the front door: a sign with ‘Monsters’ Delivery’ wrote on it.

“We also have a waiting room for the Dragon Express, so there won’t be any more chaos!”

Commented Lamia as she pointed to the simple but efficient room at the building’s side.
A sign showing ‘Dragon Express’ was placed over the door.

“We built it since people kept asking for one!”

Said the master carpenter while holding a bag of tools in one hand.

“Great job! Now people will know where to wait!”

Before, there wasn’t a specified place where people could wait for Dragon, so the town mayor asked the carpenters to build one to prevent any more confusion.

“Well, Dapta paid for it in advance, so you should thank him.”

Actually, the town mayor wanted to make profit for the city, so he gathered money from all the supporters of the idea.
As a living creature, Dragon couldn’t fly day and night, neither he could do extra rides when he felt to, so people had to find a place to get some sleep and food, meaning that they would contribute to the growth of the city’s economy.

Dragon Express was an outstanding service. Thanks to its speed and security, it attracted the attention of merchants, encouraging the improvement and comfortability of existent land travel services.
Nearby Raiz’s office, some branches of inns and restaurants were already under construction. They were still in the early stages, but the carpenters, along with Raiz’s minotaurs, were working hard to complete them as soon as possible.

“Thanks to Dragon Express, even our business took off. I’m so happy I might scream! And now my family’s funds are safe! By the way, wanna make a contract for adding a new wing to your house?”

“Ahahah! Let me finish paying you for this, first! Maybe in the future!”

“Is that so? Great. Lemme know if you need something! See ya!”

With that, the master carpenter started to walk to the nearby inn.

“If they didn’t allow us to pay when we can, we’d be screwed.”

“Indeed. Thanks to it, we even added more rooms compared to our original idea!”

At first, they wanted a somewhat normal house for him and the monsters that wanted to stay inside.
But then, the project changed, and waiting rooms and guest rooms were added so that they could finally live all under the same roof. There was even a barn for Unicorn and similar monsters, and a room for Lety.

“I am Raiz’s bodyguard, so it is only logical for me to stay here.”

Said Lety, but Raiz still couldn’t accept that she covered the cost of her room by herself.

“Don’t mind her, Meowster. If you’re lucky enough, you might see her change.”

Hearing Cat sith’s words, the tamer suddenly accepted it.
Not like he had dirty thought or anything.

All those changes brought the shape of the house to change drastically.
On a door was hanging the chivalry department branch’s sign, perches for flying monsters were placed on the roof, and behind the building were the stables and the cat doors. In front of that bizarre house, a wingless monster would wonder why the eaves were that large, and a normal man would be puzzled by the overall structure’s shape.

“I still can’t believe that my Master made a room only for me~!”

Lamia smiled happily. If one included the lower half of her body, she was quite a big monster.
That’s why human houses were usually too narrow for her race, and they normally lived in caves.
But Raiz tried his best to satisfy everyone’s needs.
Her room was long and thin to let her stretch as much as she wanted without touching the walls, and it had a big window to let her warm up in the morning sun, as well as a futon where she could entirely fit in. That was undoubtedly the ideal room for her.

“My barn is great too, and so is my hay bed! If there were also some little girls, I wouldn’t have had anything to say!”

No matter what, Unicorn was always the same.

Whenever a monster entered the rooms, they suggested changes to make them better, and most of them came even cheap.
Kobold, for example, used his savings to cover his room’s floor with ore, and Cat Sith wanted a wooden box with a towel as his bed.

“Guess I’ll go unpack my stuff.”
“I will bring here my things from the inn, then.”

The present monsters watched Raiz walk to his room and Lety heading to the city.

“There is no use in making arboreal monsters live in this house, huh…?”

“You lonelyyy?”

As Dryad was about to walk off too, Treant spoke to her.

“I am not. The soil is our house. I was only thinking about how happy they are looking, but I do not feel sad about it.”

“Master is kiiind.”

“Precisely. No tamer granted any private room to his monsters before.”

Those words came from her heart.
Dryads could share information and feelings among themselves. For example, they could feel or see what someone else had experienced.
Among those images were also tamers, which usually used their subordinates as tools and treated them as beasts. But Raiz didn’t. He was unique.

“This is… unprecedented.”

Dryad shifted her gaze to the bizarre building, the house of her comrades.

“They will be surpriiised.”

“They sure will. It should not take much before they reach this city.”

As they pondered on the approaching troubles, they ended their conversation.


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By |2018-09-28T01:10:38+00:00September 28th, 2018|Welcome to the Monsters Guild!|5 Comments

Guild Master – Chapter 28

The dancing fighter and the road toward peace

Aileen took a little distance from the wall and readied herself to smash the window down.

“Wait, you don’t have to destroy it! It’ll be fine even without fighting!”

“Say what? This way is cooler!”

“If you shatter the window and some little fragment remains on the floor, it will cause troubles to the next guests that will book this room, don’t you think?”

“Oh, right. The inn personnel didn’t do anything wrong, so it would be bad for them.”

She bumped her fist on her palm after sincerely agreeing with me.

“But I might break stuff when we fight. I wanna punish them.”
“Well, I guess that can’t be helped… just try not to as much as you can.”
“Sure thing~ ♪ Let’s start!”

Aileen was honest, but she was somehow naive. She probably didn’t even consider that the employees of the inn might spread bad rumors about the masked saviors if we broke something… or maybe it was just me exaggerating when it came to these things.

“Well, the door isn’t locked, so I guess I’ll simply enter. Excuse me~!”

The window opened with a clatter, and she climbed over the windowsill while the presents stared at her flabbergasted for a few instants.

After she jumped down and landed without a sound, one of the men moved his hands angrily.

“W-Who the hell are you?! An underling of the empire?! Or an enemy?!”
“Sir Lang, we’ve been found out!”
“What are you waiting for?! Call the guards before…”
“Before what?”
“Iik!”

She closed the distance with the man who was trying to leave the room in the blink of an eye and grabbed his shoulder.

She was wearing a heavy-looking coat, but her movements were silent and quick.
Even the members of the tiger-race, renowned for their speed, wouldn’t have had a chance against her.

“I haven’t done anything, yet… even though it sounds boring, I can’t hurt you much… Thing is, I heard quite a number of nasty things from you guys, so you reap what you sow. At least your guards seem to know how to fight.”
“R-Run…!”
“Right. I don’t wanna be seen fighting, but Di… I mean, I don’t mind him.”

She was lightning fast. Before the two guards outside the door could enter, I saw her figure splitting into four, moving around the room and making the four men pass out with a blow. It looked like some kind of magic, but actually those were mere afterimages.
That was just how skilled she was in martial arts.

The men fainted in silence, but I saw that she went easy on the one called Lang. She probably wanted to gather information from him later.

Right now, I looked like a little light insect or an orb of light, but my score was around fifty thousand. Even if our enemies were on par with SS ranked adventurers, Aileen’s inhuman speed was barely perceptible, and her score exceeded a hundred thousand points merely with her close combat abilities.

“That was a superior hand-to-hand technique called ‘Carnage phantom fist’. Sorry for using something this plain.”

No matter who would look at it, that wasn’t anything plain. Also, she didn’t even break a sweat… it looked like a piece of cake for her.

“Next are the guards… but I bet they’re hiding something in their clothes.”

“Aileen, watch out! He’s gonna throw you something!”

When the two guards stepped into the room, one of them threw a couple of knives he took from under his mantle to her.

Aileen grinned and deflected their trajectory with her fists, which led them to stick in the wall.

“Nice moves, but aiming at a girl’s face is mean.”
“Ugh…!”

The man didn’t expect her to deflect the knives, and prepared for another attack.

“Leave her to me! Aaah!”

The other one unsheathed his sword and charged Aileen, trying to slash and stab her numerous times, but she kept dodging his attacks with a smile on her face.

“You think you have more chance to win using a sword against me?”

“Shut up!”

The man wearing a helm was successfully provoked by her words and recklessly kept attacking.

“Ya-ah!”

She yelled in the spur of the moment, and faking a parry, she avoided his lunge and hit him on the head, sending him flying. The average fighter would never be able to avoid such a hit.
Her overcoat fluttered, showing her long, slender legs from beneath the slit of her skirt.

“Take this!”
“Wah…!”

As she was taking her overcoat off, the other man threw another knife that pierced through it and left a hole behind.
Did he foresee her action…? No, that was probably a coincidence.

“Damn! Di… I mean, he gave me this, and it’s also one of my favorites! Now you’ve really done it!”

I wondered what she was talking about. Well, at least she didn’t get stabbed.

“Don’t take us easily!”

The man who was sent flying by Aileen had moved around her and started another assault. He was probably an A rank swordsman, given how precise his slashes were, but that wasn’t enough to best the strongest martial artist in the kingdom.

“Hah!”

She let out a yelp and stood in a firm pose called ‘Rending lightning’, which was used to focus all the power to kill the target in a single blow.

The man tried to attack Aileen again, but she ducked in response. Taking advantage of her lower position to counterattack with the base of her palm, she aimed at the weak point of the sword, which broke with a sharp sound, then she sprang and forcefully hit the man behind her.

Secret superior hand-to-hand technique: Star collider rakshasa. She stretched her wonderful legs and crashed on him, who let out a gruesome sound before ramming into the wall. Several seconds later, the gravity brought him back to the floor.

The other man didn’t run, and tried to take advantage of the situation to throw another knife to her back.
An A rank adventurer might have avoided that… but the difference between that level and an SSS rank’s was just abysmal.

“Hah!”

She twisted her body and drew an arc with her white leg. After the blast made the knife stop in mid-air, she kicked it directly and sent it back, piercing the man’s shoulder and the door, sealing his movements.
I couldn’t believe my eyes… Was that really possible?
As I watched her in awe, I hoped to see more of her techniques.

“Ugh… M-Monster…!”

She then briskly walked to him.

“I’ll pay for the door later. My boss cares about these kinds of things.”
“…Huh?”

She took the Rending lightning pose again and got ready to vent her frustration onto him. At that moment, even the ground seemed to tremble.

“Atatatatatatata!”

Aileen trashed the poor man at an inhuman speed. Her blows were so strong that they left countless dents on the door behind him.

“Guah…”

He fainted as his eyes rolled back. His clothes were destroyed.
She was really angry for what happened to her overcoat, and I couldn’t really understand if I was more uneasy about that or sorry for the poor guy who enraged her.

Now that the men were knocked out, she breathed in and kicked the air a few times before standing in a victorious pose.

“We shall not overlook the wickedness crawling in the world as we assist people in need! The unbeatable masked saviors are here!”

Why did she say it now that no one could hear her? I mean, even Mylarka did the same after defeating those guys, but… was introducing yourselves necessary? Still, although I didn’t want to stand out, I knew that doing it must have felt great.

“Your catchphrase is different from Mylarka’s.”
“Eh? What does she say? We should talk it over with Yuma next time we see, but mine is cooler, right?”
“Slightly… I didn’t do anything to help you, though.”
“If I went all out, they wouldn’t have survived. I bet you’re way stronger than them, though! Wanna try fighting?”
“No, thank you. Anyway, what Lang said is a problem. Aileen, sorry for troubling you again, but can you be Manarina and her sisters’ bodyguard for a while?”
“Yeah, no problem. What do you wanna do with these guys? Should I ask the guild to seize them?”

Except for Lang, who was tied up as we talked, the other three men and two guards weren’t going to wake up any soon, and Vinceburg would have noticed for sure that someone was trying to sabotage their plans.

“Let’s ask a few things to Lang, first. When will Velvechia attack us?”
“The first contact… will be tomorrow… Lord Jean will take advantage… of the opening…”

I had imagined it. Jean, who couldn’t even defeat the princess, was seen as useless from his allies, so he arranged the preparations for this invasion, but then they ignored him.

“Did you want to live the rich’s life after selling the kingdom?”
“…When Velvechia reaches the border’s fortress… we planned to surrend-oof!”

Aileen headbutted him. Her strength when she got angry was terrifying…
The spirit race was filled with inflexible people, and their power was no joke.

“That’s stupid! If we lose our kingdom, whaddya think it’ll happen?! I must punish those idiots who listen to you. Dick, can I?”
“I know that feeling, but wait a minute. We just need to show them what we’re made off. Can you tell everything to Cody before meeting Manarina?”
“Yeah. I’m sure he’ll be glad to help his l–I mean, friend.”
“What was that…? Anyway, we have to rely on the hero wielding the sword of light.”

The Kingdom of Albein had the expedition party, an unbeatable team that became the masked saviors, among its ranks.

Cody – Holy sword of light, was the best way to show Velvechia how futile was their move.

“…By the way, I did a roundhouse kick before. Did you see anything?”
“…Do you really want to know?”
“Waaah! M-My panties are pretty today, but I absolutely didn’t want you to see ’em! Forget it! Now!”
“I might have glimpsed something white, but I guess it was only my imagination.”
“N-No, stop it! Red is fine, but white isn’t!”

Aileen – Charming goddess of wrath. I still had to see the ultimate form of her title, but seeing her dance-like fighting style, made me confirm how vibrant the ‘charming’ part was.


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1+

Monsters’ Guild – Chapter 30

Victory party

Torches lit the city as to drive the night away.

“Hahaha!”

“More meat incoming!”

“This’s good! Gimme more!”

People were drinking and wolfing down food, while others were improvising some strange dances, but everyone was enjoying the victory to the fullest.

“In the end, we managed to win.”

Lety was slowly chewing the cooked meat of a monster they killed in the afternoon.
Commanding amateurs wore her out more than she expected, so she was extremely tired.

“We didn’t have casualties, but many were injured. Thanks to Unicorn’s treatment, their life is not in danger anymore, but they’ll need to rest for some time.”

“Seems like the adventurer guild will help for that. They offered to provide medical discounts to those who got injured in battle.”

Raiz was relieved to hear that. He got close to the townspeople, so he was honestly happy.

“By the way, what was that frog?”

Lety recalled the apostle of Bael.

“Can demons simply be born like that? Aren’t they summoned with some sort of ritual?”

She was ignorant when it came to magic, and as far as she knew, only occultic and questionable parties summoned them by offering some living sacrifice in their rituals… or so she heard when she was a child.

“If the right conditions are met, the presence of a summoner is not necessary. I don’t think there was one this time.”

He didn’t have enough information, so that was the only conclusion he could come to.

“Also, if demons could only be summoned, how could the first guy who summoned one come up with the right ritual? You can’t know the ritual if you don’t know the summon, don’t you think?”

“Oh, you’re right.”

What should I eat next, some eggs or some chicken meat?
As Lety was stuck with that doubt in her mind, she agreed and accepted Raiz’s explanation.

“Oh well, let’s enjoy this night!”

“Here, Lamia. Have this too.”

“Thank you.”

The nearby old women kept offering her food, and she gleefully accepted more and more, despite having her hands already full.
Her duty was simple, but essential: bringing arrows and supplies on the walls as fast as she could while they were under siege.

“Here, Unicorn, have a carrot.”

“Why… I spent all my time healing people in the rearguard, so how come that only old-farts are thanking me?!”

He was always the same.

Nearby Raiz’s ranch was Dragon, who watched over the festival from the distance like a stranger.
He was the only one there, but soon a lot of people went to him.

“Oh, here it is! It’s here!”

Drunk men were approaching him while holding booze and food.

“Dragon, join our party!”

“You deserve it, man! You kicked that monster’s ass in a jiffy!”

“Yeah, let’s have fun together!”

“I refuse. I acted only because my Master wanted me to. Humans like you should be terrified of a dragon like me. ”

“Oh, c’mon! Come have some fun!”

“Yeah! Have some meat, here!”

“Drink this!”

“O-Oi, you…”

One after the other, the drunkards placed food between Dragon’s claws like they were putting it in some storehouse.

“Dig in! It’s super tasty!”

“Ugh…”

None of them was listening, but they were really convinced of their words.
Ignoring them would have been easy, but the feeling of food between his claws was annoying, so he brought everything to his mouth and swallowed it whole.

“Woah! That’s a real drinker for you!”

“A real eater, if anything!”

“Gahahaha! Both are fine!”

“Guys, let’s bring him more food!”

“And more drinks!”

The fearless drunkards set off and soon returned with more supplies.

“You damn drunkards…”

He cursed them but didn’t leave the place.
Raiz watched him from afar.

“Oh, some guys are bringing him food?”

He turned and looked at the people in the city having fun along with monsters.

“…Maybe we will really be accepted in this city.”

The party grew livelier as the night grew deeper.


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By |2018-09-28T01:12:37+00:00September 19th, 2018|Welcome to the Monsters Guild!|2 Comments

New Game – Chapter 25

TL note: heartfelt thanks to Johnson Keriri, who donated twenty euros for this series!


The birdie that doesn’t chirp – Part 1

“Aaah… speaking formal and minding etiquette made my shoulders stiff…”

The next day, Takumi left the castle again and after cracking his shoulders to relieve some stress, he checked his schedule.

“The match will be held in seven days in the western part of the Eltern plains… I can’t believe that queen. She’s too bossy, and we now have to handle another of her whims.”

Usually, normal duels and even magic battles were fought in the capital, but since this match could be nastier than usual, it was decided to relocate it outside the capital. Eluria ordered to install special seats for the overlords and the royal family, other than providing provisional ones for nobles only.

“And to make things worse, Elsa collapsed due to a stomachache… this is no good.”

The last encounter with Takumi had been a death blow for her. She accepted the request as long as she could have an entire day of rest.
The slave merchant was still thinking about it before raising his head.

“…Aigle, can you ask Gaitsu what’s going on? Trying to handle this by myself might be a bit too much.”

The bird-man that was walking with him spread his white wings and straightened his back.

“Yes, my Liege~!”

“Don’t shout like that. My ears hurt.”

“Forgive me! I will pay more attention next time!”

“…Just stop shouting.”

“Ahahaaah! Do you really think I will?!”

With burning passion in his eyes and an imaginary fire behind him, he kept yelling, so Takumi pressed his palms on his ears while frowning. Then, the drakonid that was with them joined the discussion. His scales were black like kurogane, and his big mouth was filled with sharp teeth.

“Dahahaha! Aigle was scolded ‘cuz he’s too loud!”

“Lewin, don’t shout.”

“Huh?! Am I?! What’s the problem with my hot voice?!”

“It’s that you’re sultry.”

“Duh, that’s a praise, not a problem!”

Opening his red mouth wide, Levin broke into a cheeky laugh, and Takumi let out a deep sigh.

Usually, Kunon and Karin accompanied him, but they already had something to do in the slums, so Aigle and Lewin became his bodyguards for the day.
They were part of his demi-human squad, whose members were equipped with modern weapons and entrusted with various roles depending on their abilities. Takumi taught them modern tactic warfare, and Kunon was their tutor, making them real elites. They were second only to her in terms of power.

Aigle was a bird-man with unbelievable strength thanks to his huge frame and muscular body. A single arrow of his longbow could almost sink a ship.
On the other hand, Lewin particularly solid scales granted him a tough, strong body that was almost matchless in battle.

Bringing many people into the royal castle was hard, and Takumi couldn’t allow anyone to see his underlings use the weapons or tactics he taught them.
That’s why he chose to be accompanied by these two, who didn’t need weapons, but…

“At least Kunon’s is somewhat cute…”

“I totally agree, my Liege! My instructor’s cuteness shines like a treasure! Whenever she pours abusing words on me, I feel an impressive joy warming my heart…!”

“I know that feeling damn well, Aigle! When Kunon kicks my butt hard and looks down on me like I’m a piece of trash I just feel too good!”

…Takumi should have predicted how rotten they could be, despite their amazing abilities.

“I’ve had enough of you two. Shut the hell up. I don’t want someone to see me walking with two perverts screaming in a place like this.”

“A pervert?! I’m so honored to be praised by you, my Liege!”

“Force me to! C’mon, bring it on! Hit me super hard!”

Handling them gave Takumi a headache for the first time, but then his gaze fell on the Goddess’ cathedral sparkling under the sunlight.
On its walls were carved law formulas, as well as complex patterns and figures, which only improved its artistic, beautiful appearance.
Takumi recalled the previous day, and casually started to walk in its direction.

“Aigle, go to Gaitsu and update him. Lewin, go to Mirta and make her write a list of people who need some construction, then reunite with Aigle.”

“But we are supposed to be your escort, my Liege!”

“He’s right, Master! What if we’re not with you and somethin’ happen?!”

“I’m going to the cathedral. Do you wanna come too?”

The two closed their mouths right away.
Bird-men worshiped the sky, the trees and the sun, while drakonids worshiped their ancestors, who they saw as deities.
Every demi-human race had its own creed and respected the others’.
That’s why they were inclined to avoid any contact with them, and Filia’s cathedral was no exception: they would have stepped into it only if absolutely necessary.

“I’m sure you would’ve come if I hadn’t given you another work just a minute ago. But don’t worry, the cathedral is a safe place, and I won’t do anything reckless.”

“Very well! I shall fulfill my new duty, then!”

“Yeah, me too! For our big sisters!”

The two rose their hands high in the sky along with passionate words before walking away. They were indeed noisy perverts, but when it came down to business, they were reliable.
Takumi, now alone, approached the guards stationed in front of the cathedral and spoke to them.

“Excuse me, I am Takumi from the major company Suzuran. I was entrusted by Lady Fairstadt to deliver a verbal message to the archbishop. Is Lise Crest here?”

“She is currently praying in the cathedral… Forgive me but are you perhaps the same Takumi who exposed Amberg’s wrongdoings?!”

“…Well, I do not think there are many Takumis around…”

“Oh my! I would have never imagined making your acquaintance, Sir!”

Takumi was slightly startled by the guard’s excitement, and waited for the right moment to speak again.

“I took part of the operation to unmask Amberg, last month! Your plan was flawless! Truly wonderful!”

“Oh, really? Sorry for using you as decoys, though.”

“Do not mention it! We were just… cowards unable to lay a finger on those nobles.”

For a moment, the guard hung his head in shame at his own words.

“We could only watch like miserable cowards… But we’re now respectful and proper guards, and it is all thanks to you, Sir Takumi!”

The slave merchant smiled back vividly at the guard’s pristine smile.

“I only pushed you a little, but you earned the respect you deserve by sticking bravely to an unreasonable tactic.”

“Thank you…! I will treasure your words and pray for walking the path of justice forever!”

“Good. I will also try my best to meet your expectations.”

The guard bowed deeply before straightening his back again and nodding to Takumi, who proceeded to enter.

The cathedral was bathed in sunlight, and probably thanks to the stained glass, there wasn’t a single shadow inside. In the deepest part, a young girl was praying on her knees. She must have heard the sound of the door opening, because the next moment she turned toward it.

“…Keep your voice down, slave merchant. I could hear you from here.”

“Ouch, really? My bad.”

“…No problem. I had already finished my daily prayers.”

After brushing the dust off her knees, she looked straight at his face.

“So, what brings you here in the holy cathedral?”

“I just left the royal castle and thought to drop by to chat a little… What’s that face?”

“It is the mirror of my current displeasure.”

Takumi smiled bitterly at her reluctant expression.

“This is no place for unbelievers like you. Go back home, please.”

“That’s rude. I’m a dedicated believer of Filia, you know?”

“Stop mentioning our Goddess’ name in vain. You have not even read the Holy Text properly…”

“‘Thou who aspirest to being a hero, thy Goddess shall grant thee the smile of victory,’ chapter of the goddess, twelfth paragraph. The words that Goddess Filia reserves for the heroes who march to war.”

“…Chapter of heroes, twentieth paragraph.”

“‘For our choice, we proceed down the righteous path we decid’d.’”

“…The difference between the other chapters and the law’s one?”

“The former ones record the ancient war between nameless heroes and gods and are divided into chapters and paragraphs, whereas the latter one is composed of two-hundred-sixty-four articles and forty poems that record the law established after said war.”

“…Umpf.”

Lise let out a puff, unable of finding an error in his answer.

“What matters are not the contents but what lays behind it.”

“I can’t take you seriously with those puffed cheeks… anyway, don’t you think I’m a bit better than those who treat the Holy Text as a simple decoration? Shouldn’t I be awarded for this?”

“…I cannot help it. The archbishop’s duty is also to exchange words with other believers.”

Coming to terms with her work, Lise patted a bench with discontent, and Takumi sat on it facing her to have a proper conversation.

“Come to think of it, aren’t you the genius who invented the law formula?”

“Yes, I am. Is there something you want to ask this genius archbishop?”

“Oh, yeah, totally.”

“Given your rough conduct, you would not deserve any answer… but whatever.”

“Thank you for your generosity, oh genius archbishop. I have a question concerning the law formula.”

“…Is that so? I thought you were going to ask about magic.”

Lise tilted her head, and Takumi looked up at the ceiling while answering.

“Someone is already teaching me its basics and use in battle… and I’ve also done some research on it.”

Magic was divided into two parts: Innate and Control.
The former referred to the power stored in the soul, which was the source of magic, and the latter was basically imagination, which served to control and polish that mighty power known worldwide. People could create supernatural events by combining these two, and Takumi was especially interested in the Innate part.

“Is Innate something that you can simply imagine gathering on your fingertips?”

“Yes and no. There are many ways to control and use it.”

Lise spoke while moving her hand in circles.

“Imagining gathering it, casting it with words, activating it by moving according to specified patterns… It is not only about imagination, but about the various meanings that the actions hold.”

“Like the thing you just did?”

“…You have quite keen eyes. I was imagining magic gathering into my finger while enhancing it with words and shaping it like a circle. This way, I overlapped chanting, various hieroglyphs, and actions, so it does not really matter how you do it.”

“I see. Last time I saw someone casting magic, they only chanted it.”

“That is quite common. Other countries’ magic is weak exactly for that reason. Overlapping more methods is a slow process, but it amplifies significantly the output of the spell, and the only way to speed the preparation process up is doing everything simultaneously.”

“I guess it’s not that easy, though.”

“Indeed. Writing something with a hand while tracing a shape with the other and chanting at the same time is no easy task, but a real holy warrior should research how to speed up, polish and improve this process.”

“Wow… that’s quite interesting.”

“I agree. It is like trying to solve a puzzle in many different ways.”

Her expression was as dull as ever, but she was swinging her legs excitedly.
After a little while, Lise shifted her gaze to Takumi.

“What? I was listening.”

“…That is why I am surprised right now.”

“Don’t take me for one of those adults who never listen to children…”

“There are plenty of people like that among nobles. They do not care about the effects and essential points of the law formula that makes magic work, so almost no one listened to this kind of explanation except Her Majesty.”

“Well, isn’t it better to have a casual talk with them?”

“…I spend all my time researching, so I do not know how to do that.”

She replied with her usual flat tone, but there was a hint of loneliness in her words.
She was part of the elite of society, and wasn’t only a unique holy warrior thanks to her distinct ideas and intelligence, which made her earn the title of archbishop, but had even enough prestige to being invited from the Overlord of Fortesea as a house guest.
Takumi started to think about her words, and the next moment he got up on his feet.

“Lise, wanna try to get out of here?”

“…Eh?”

The slave merchant grabbed her hand and started to walk toward the door.

“N-No, wait. I have to get back on my research…”

“There should be gondolas passing on this layer, right?”

“I saw them passing behind the cathedral… should you not prepare for your match?”

“Who cares, I’ll just do it tomorrow. Have you ever been on a gondola?”

“N-No, never. I only watched them descend Listina’s channels. It was relaxing.”

“Getting on one is even better, trust me. Listina isn’t the Water Capital for nothing.
Also, the look of the city is amazing when…”

He kept talking to fuel Lise’s interest as they approached the gondola, and once they were in front of it, Takumi helped her getting inside.


<Prev | Index | Next>

4+

New Game – Chapter 24

Sorry for the delay, the editor had two exams this few weeks, so we couldn’t release the chapters like usual.
Enjoy this way longer than usual chapter! The next one will be a new game sponsored chapter too!


The ashen-colored birdie – Part 4

Mirta’s flushed face and angry expression were the center of attention.

“Get your hands off me, Lord Kiad! I said I refuse!”

“Aren’t you a bit too cold with me? My invitation should make a grown-up woman like you happy.”

She glared at the man in front of him, who not only was enjoying the situation while holding her arm, but also cracked a vulgar smile after sniffing her blond hair.
He was Kiad Fortesea, the overlord who administered and maintained the city’s military power.

“This buffet is hosted by Her Majesty, and I do not see how…”

“Mh… so what? Her Majesty still hasn’t come, and my father Elvis couldn’t attend this feast, so it would be a waste to not enjoy myself, don’t you think?”

She bit her lower lip, disgusted by his behavior.

The host was Queen Eluria herself, and they were now in the royal castle, meaning that any improper conduct would be interpreted as an insult to the royal family, but Kiad didn’t seem to care of it. The overlords detained the real power in Richtert, after all. The queen’s prestige was a mere decoration.
Those thoughts were evident on his face, and his harassment wasn’t going to end soon. The nearby lords and princes, as well as the guards who were attracted by the ruckus and wanted to check what was going on, were watching at the scene without trying to stop him.

The Fortesea family was so powerful that even foreign countries shook in fear when hearing about their magic knights, and their influence in the city was evident.
They could ruin any noble family if they so desired.
Their leadership was based on sheer power and intimidation. That’s how they earned the suffix ‘valiant’.

“I like strong people. You came all the way here after overthrowing Amberg despite being part of a company of the slums, and then you step into the aquamarine garden with the most influential nobles of Richtert… I greatly value your abilities, you know?”

He spoke those words with a hint of scorn in his voice, and looked down on her with fiery passion burning deep into his eyes, like a beast looking at its prey.

“I can’t stop myself from desiring a gorgeous lady who accomplished even such a feat.”

“As the leader of Suzuran, I am very busy, so I will not change my mind! I humbly refuse your invitation!”

“Is that so? Not even if spending a single night with me, the heir of Fortesea, would bestow my family’s protection on you and your organization?”

Mirta couldn’t keep her repugnance hidden anymore, and openly showed her emotions.

“I already know how skilled my men are, so none of us need that.”

“Hahaha, well said! Perhaps that elf approached us to enjoy my patronage?”

He burst into a loud laughter while eyeing Karin up, and Mirta lost her temper.

“That elf plays a key role in our company, and is one of my most important friends! Take back what you have just said!”

“A friend? Do you think demi-humans are on your level? What a sweet thing to say! Usually, they’re used as disposable pieces, and elves are particularly alluring only as toys!”

Brought to her limit, Mirta freed her hand and raised it to slap him, but Karin stopped her from behind.

“Calm down, Mirta.”

“No way! He dared to insult you and our organization, so…!”

“I appreciate your concern, but getting mad is not your duty right now.”

Karin smiled tenderly. Then, a thunderous, dry sound echoed around, and more guards came running to see what was going on.
Kiad turned to face the source of that bang with a sharp glare, and saw a composed, carefree guy approaching them while the smell of gunpowder wafted in the air.

“Hello. I saw you inviting my leader with enthusiasm, but… what about understanding that coercion does not make you look cool?”

Takumi was smiling brightly while the noble turned pale and brought a hand to the short sword tied at his hips.

“…Did you make that sound?”

“Oh no, how could I? That sound reminded me of a rifle… do you think I am holding one right now?”

The slave merchant provoked him by showing his empty hands.

“Now, trying to force random girls to come into your room is a thing, but unluckily this time you chose Mirta, Suzuran’s leader, and Karin, one of its important employees.
Might you take back what you just said and apologize, please?”

“How dare you speak to me like that… You have no idea who I am!”

“Oh, do I, overlord Kiad Fortesea? I do not think there is someone in all Richtert who does not know you.”

“Hah! So, you do know who you are talking to! I guess you didn’t grasp the meaning of my comment, though.”

Remarked the noble while a triumphant smile spread on his face.

“Is that… so?”

Takumi couldn’t contain his laughter anymore. It sounded eerie, but different from a madman’s. It had a deep meaning.

“As the owner of the magical knights, you detain the influence and leadership to control people… Your abilities are suitable for an overlord…”

Takumi curled his lips into a self-confident smile.

“But that’s it.”

For a moment, none of the presents could understand what he meant.
Even Kiad’s mouth remained closed as his entire body stiffened.
No one could conceive that someone could tell the symbol of the Holy Kingdom, Fortesea, ‘that’s it.’

“Suzuran is a company, and I am in charge of selling its goods. I am interested in valuable things, but… those who abuse of their power are simply worthless.”

“Are you trying to insult Fortesea?!”

Kiad came back to his senses and vigorously unsheathed his sword.

“It never crossed my mind. As a merchant, saying that something useless is actually worth something would only ruin my reputation.”

The next moment, blood-lust gushed out from the noble, who dashed onward and swung his sword at Takumi, but the blade stopped in mid-air.

“This is not good…”

A cheerful, blonde girl had blocked it with one of her black daggers.

“You have to tell me when things get spicy, Takumi.”

Ferocity burned in Kunon’s glare as she wore her usual smile.
The man tried to recompose himself, but when he saw the ears on the girl’s head, he openly showed annoyance.

“You have a lot of nerves to bring here even a filthy fox…”

“I’m a wolf, not a fox! I’ll kill you if you get it wrong again!”

She replied with a cheerful tone, but her golden eyes were dead serious, and killing intent overflowed from her. Kiad’s body froze, but his arrogance didn’t disappear.

“What a big mouth you have, despite being powerless in front of our magic.”

Magic was widely spread in the world, and even the distant island countries knew of it, but everyone recognized that Richtert’s magicians were extraordinary.
Thirty years ago, Richtert waged war against Dämmerung, known to use demi-humans to overpower human soldiers, but Richtert was victorious despite having only several hundred units.
Elvis Fortesea made the magicians be the key part of their battles.
They researched magic since ancient times, so they had the skills, gears and power to reach that outcome in such a dire situation.
Still, Takumi showed a boisterous smile.

“Do you really think that our bodyguard would lose against the magicians you are so proud of?”

“There’s only a way to know it!”

Kiad glared down at Kunon, when a voice reached them.

“Sheathe your weapon!”

Everyone fell silent when they recognized the owner of that voice. After a moment, a person walked through the crowd.

“What might disrupt the quietness of my buffet?”

Eluria’s words were grave, and Elsa, who was by her side, took a step forward.

“Her Majesty issued an order. Any other hostile act from any of the parties will result in their arrest.”

“Tch. Mind your own business, Fairstadt’s tomboy.”

“Silence, undisciplined son of Fortesea. Seems like you are getting ahead of yourself while your father is absent, but are you really going to continue your misconduct in front of Her Highness?”

Despite being both overlords, they didn’t seem to get along, as they glared daggers at each other.

“That ruffian of a slave merchant started this, and I only acted to teach him a lesson.”

“If that is true, he will be severely punished… but we will hear his version of the facts first. Slave merchant of Suzuran, what do you have to say?”

“I showed my contempt about the idleness of Fortesea, and also criticized the power of magic.”

Eluria looked at Takumi, who calmly mouthed those words, and nodded.

“So, are you saying that there was a discrepancy between your opinions? This does not change the fact that you bothered the other nobles gathered in this place with your behavior.”

She then paused for a moment before starting to talk to both of them.

“Therefore… as the leading authority of this kingdom, I propose to set up a place to clear their uneasiness.”

“Oh…? What does that mean?”

“It is simple, Kiad. Our Queen told you to reach an agreement worthy of the title of magic knight you earned in the past.”

“Precisely. You will set your dispute with a match and the royal family will personally oversee it. We will set a date for it, and it will be held in the presence of your companies and all the present nobles. Would it be good for you?”

“Absolutely. I didn’t want to meet them ever again, but I guess I need to teach them what the magic knights are made of… even though I don’t think they will last enough for it.”

Commented the noble scornfully looking at the merchant, who paid him no mind, with a sidelong glance.

“Her Highness, as Lord Kiad said a moment ago, it is unthinkable it will be a fair fight. To have a chance of winning, might I provide a list of handicaps we should take into account?”

“…I see. Indeed, Richtert’s magic knights are…”

“Let me clarify my words: my organization should have those handicaps, otherwise Fortesea will not have a chance of winning.”

Eluria’s solemn aura dissipated as she stared at him in wonder. Then, she timidly tried to confirm what she had just heard.

“Are you… sure about your decision?”

“Yes. This match would be boring otherwise. Our participants will be our elf Karin, the most powerless demi-human, and Kunon, who will be blindfolded and handcuffed… will this be fair?”

Eluria was baffled, and Kiad, on the other hand, was reaching the limit of his patience.

“How long will you keep to make fun of the magic knights?!”

“What do you mean? If I wanted to ridicule you, I would just go all out, no?”

Then, Takumi faced him while wearing a taunting smile.

“Checkmate, young master of Fortesea.”

The slave merchant’s irises were pitch-black, like bottomless pits.
His self-confident gaze stood out even more over his firm smile, and the overall pressure he exuded made Kiad’s expression warp for the first time.

“…Fine. Witness your defeat.”

Clicking his tongue, the annoyed Kiad left the place. Now that the commotion had ended, the curious nobles started to talk to each other again, and Queen Eluria, who seemed to enjoy the peace she had restored, smiled while bringing a hand to her cheek.

“Oh my, this will be a headache for Lux.”

“I was trying to meet your expectations, Your Majesty”

“In that case, I am looking forward to your showdown.”

With that, the queen turned her back and walked toward the puzzled nobles, while a dense aura brought Takumi to face someone whose veins popped from her forehead in anger.

“Aren’t you satisfied until you create a mess?”

“Hey, the bang you heard earlier came from over there.”

“Where?! Where is the guy who picked a fight with Fortesea?!

“In front of you, duh.”

“WHO ON EARTH CARES ABOUT YOU!”

Elsa started to forcefully hit him on the shoulder, but after a few instants she stopped and let out a brief groan while falling on her knees due to a terrible stomach-ache.

“Anyway, thanks for calling the queen.”

“Huh…? Go thank Crest’s archbishop, not me. I was greeting Her Highness when she called us in a hurry.”

She replied and shifted her gaze toward Lise, who was following the queen while glancing at them as to confirm their condition.

“The guy you’re searching for has already left. Oh, and sorry, but could you bring me Kunon? She disappeared again.”

“What?! Wasn’t she here just a minute ago?!”

“Since she couldn’t fight when the queen appeared, she got bored and went to get some more food.”

“And why didn’t you stop her?! Also, are you planning to make me take care of her again?! You are her master, shouldn’t you take your responsibilities?! Aaah, for Filia’s sake! No matter the problem she will cause, they’ll blame me anyway!”

Takumi turned around, and Elsa dashed away while screaming to bring Kunon back. No matter what happened, the captain of the guards was very diligent.

“Mirta, are you okay?”

“Y-Yes. My arm hurts only a little bit… Sorry, he interrupted me while I was speaking, and things escalated like that. Now our plans are ruined, and I can’t just try to introduce ourselves to influential companies…”

Realizing that she couldn’t carry out her duty, her eyes welled with tears, guilt gnawing at her from the inside.

“Now that I could finally act as a real leader… how could things turn this way…”

“Don’t be sad, Mirta. You did exactly what you had to. Our leader wouldn’t look down on her comrades, who you firmly protected. That was your real duty.”

As he patted her head, he shifted his gaze toward Karin.

“Also, this brought us closer to our true goal… right?”

“I gathered quite a lot of information, and we picked a fight like we planned, so everything was flawless.”

The two of them smiled at each other, while Mirta cocked her head, puzzled.

“Your… true goal?”

“Yeah, we wanted to pick a fight with that imbecile of Kiad. We needed a pretext to fish him, and even though I didn’t start it myself, I managed to arrange a nice table for this game.”

Tapping on his temple, he kept talking.

“Magic is the foundation of Richtert, and influences it greatly. The nobles and privileged classes use it to keep other countries in check and to mock demi-humans.”

Demi-humans generally lacked magical power. Only elves could beat humans when it came to it, but their knowledge was passed down their descendants only, and they kept living in secluded regions… or so Karin said.
Even if a demi-human learned magic, it couldn’t live of battles only. Since magic was considered ‘sacred’ for Richtert’s doctrine, the nobles wanted demi-humans, who couldn’t use it, to reside in the worst place possible: the slums.
Thanks to that crooked view, the citizens started to think that demi-humans were simply inferior to humans and developed unfounded prejudices about them.

“I want to destroy that stupid idea of omnipotence.”

Magic was the ultimate power, so the magic knights were unbeatable.
Soon they would have known the huge difference between them and demi-humans.

“Don’t you think it will be a lot of fun?”

He pictured that scene in his mind, and smiled while vacantly staring in front of him.
Karin couldn’t help but poke his back.

“That will be fun for you and Kunon, but do not drag me into this, please.”

“I-I agree! Kunon is a thing, but Karin can’t fight!”

“Actually, I am fine with fighting.”

“Are you?!”

“Well, as a former slave, I got used to it. I just cannot use the weapon I grew accustomed to.”

She practiced more than anyone else with the weapon that Takumi built for her, but she couldn’t bring it in a match with that many people.
Modern weapons should be researched and developed over a long time. Otherwise, the world’s balance would have been easily destroyed.

“So, Master, you will give me a great reward for making me fight, are you not?”

“A reward, huh…? What about this?”

He faced Karin with a complacent smile.

“If you win this match, I will do whatever you want only for once.”

“…Are you serious?”

“Yes. Anything is fine as long as it is possible.”

“Anything… He really said that…!”

She muttered something in a cute voice, and then nodded slightly.

“We will win, and you will feel on your skin the shame of wearing a dress!”

“Karin… do you hate them that much?”

“Of course, Mirta! I only want to go home and change into my normal clothes…”

Remembering that a lot of people had already seen her, she blushed furiously and hugged herself to hide her body.

“Takumi, it will be my first magic battle, though.”

“I know a few people that might help us, so don’t worry about it.”

“Do you know an expert in magical battles?”

“Yes. She should come here soon.”

Karin wore a doubtful expression as footsteps approached her from behind.

“Captain! Don’t hold me like I’m a bag or something!”

“You’d escape again if I were to hold you in any other way!”

Elsa was holding Kunon under her armpit, and once the guard spotted Takumi, she briskly walked to him.

“Here’s your lost pet dog, slave merchant! And don’t you dare to go away without me! You owe me one for this, you heard?!”

“Oh, great job, Elsa. By the way…”

“…What? I am all ears for your apologies.”

“Sorry, but can you be our instructor to win the magic battle?”

“…I must have misheard that. Can you repeat?”

“Overlord Fairstadt, might you be our instructor, please?”

“Oooh. You see, as a Fairstadt, I’m very busy.”

“Oh, c’mon. Everyone in the slums knows you as ‘the guard in charge of the slave merchant.’ We’re friends, so you will help us in this time of need, right?”

“Well, I’d almost want to see you bow and yell ‘my savior’ while I walk away!”

As she let out a dry laugh, Takumi placed a hand on her shoulder.

“We’re counting on you.”

It goes without saying that Elsa fell on the ground due to another horrible stomach-ache.


<Prev | Index | Next>

5+

Guild Master – Chapter 27

The tiger-race’s gratitude and the spirit girl’s mission

The night breeze scattered the ashes that once were the enemy base.

On our way to the tiger-race village, I spotted the last two soldiers remained in the area. One of them was asleep due to magic and the other one had fainted. Thinking that it was better to make them leave, I shook the sleeping one awake.

“…Mh? Is it still night…?”
“Yeah, and all of your comrades fled without you.”
“…Eh…? W-Wait, what…?!”

He didn’t understand what was going on, and it was a pain to explain things thoroughly, so…

“Don’t worry, even your captain fled, so you won’t receive any punishment if you run too. Oh, and take that guy with you until he wakes up.”
“O-Okay… Woah! What’s with that mask?!”
“You don’t need to know. Now, go before the tiger-race seizes you.”
“W-Waaah! Help me!”

He let out a memorable scream and dashed away, bringing the fainted guy I had hit before with him. While he was running away, I cast Healing Light on both them, and hoped they didn’t fall and hurt themselves too badly.

Five prisoners were more than enough. Any more than that would be a burden for the tiger-race’s village.

Those soldiers couldn’t come back without proper equipment.
Mylarka blocked their supply route and establishing a new one would’ve taken quite the amount of time. They also had to find a way out of here now, since the mountain wasn’t a safe place at night, considering the roaming monsters and beasts, but that was their problem. If they didn’t feel that their life was at stake, they might’ve tried to attack again.

If we didn’t act right away, they would’ve probably used this mountain as a base to take advantage of the gap in the kingdom defense.

I already asked Aileen to spy on Velvechia to know exactly what they were planning, and Kirsch was helping too. Sneaking into the Vinceburg’s mansion was overall simple… but to be safe, I had ‘stuck my eyes’ on Aileen.
I had to handle something else at that moment, though.

“Let’s go to the village… Guys, are you still there?”

The tiger-race members, who were worshiping Mylarka after having witnessed the overwhelming destruction of the enemy’s base, were still prostrated at her feet… or rather, at the dragon’s, since she was still riding it.

“Can you also tell them to raise their head? I do not like how they are quivering.”
“When we fell into a trap, an angel riding a dragon descended from the sky and razed the enemy base in the blink of an eye… I, Jedah, will tell this story as long as I live and report it to our chief.”

Jedah, a male tiger-race who would usually appear fearless and intimidating, looked at us with a child-like expression. He was probably fantasizing about us.

“Ah… Masked magician, you are oh so beautiful…”
“Masked swordsman, even your abilities are incredible, and so was your magic… What might you be called?”

Ludo and his wife also looked slightly enthusiast. Being praised was unsettling, but this time I had no choice but to accept it.

“We only happened to see Riko of the tiger tribe being chased by some soldiers of Velvechia, and we heard of your situation from her. In front of such a conduct, we, the masked saviors, wanted to help. Nothing more.”
“The masked saviors… I would have never imagined that there were humans so willing to help a race they kept exploiting. We should discard our prejudices.”

Unluckily, putting us aside, in the kingdom was normal to think of werebeasts as ‘inferior beings’.

But I just couldn’t think of them like that, considering how wise were their elders and how well they grasped the basic movements of fighting. Some of them were even wonderful mercenaries.

So, how could they have been captured like that…? Velvechia must’ve taken advantage of their pyrophobia and exploited these innocent werebeasts. After everything was finished, I wanted to make them pay for their sins… I needed to think about what to do.

“Do not feel obliged toward us. Now that you are safe, go back to your village and live in peace. We will try to not make Albein bother you ever again.”

Mylarka’s words were so intrinsic of her sense of justice that I didn’t have to add anything. She didn’t join the expedition against the Demon Lord for nothing.

Jedah, who was still prostrated, raised his head.

“The tiger-race always repays its debts. We cannot help it if you have to go off somewhere quickly, but since it is already this late, we would like to at least offer you a bed to sleep in.”

He then held a begging pose, and his comrades copied him. It was super effective.
Also, we didn’t really need to get back to the capital right away…

I had already written the rune for Magic Spirit on Aileen, so that I could help her in battle and know how things were going in real time.

She planned to storm into Vinceburg’s mansion, but the plan changed when she got in touch with Kirsch, who was trying to make her ex-comrades rebel along with her.

Vinceburg’s servants held meetings outside the mansion, and currently Aileen was eavesdropping their conversation from the veranda of their inn’s room. She occasionally asked if she could break in, and I always had to tell her to wait a bit more.

If Velvechia couldn’t break in our kingdom from the mountains, they were probably going to force their way through the plains in the south.
That was the perfect battlefield for the Dark cavalry, their main force composed by high-mobility horsemen..

“Well, putting your offer aside, we made a promise with Riko, so we shall accept.”
“Yeah, but you don’t like the smell of humans, right?”
“Right, but benefactors are an exception. The elders will be surprised though, so it would be better if you could smell like us… How about…?”
“Ah, don’t worry. Riko told us she will think about it. I’m sure it would bother you if we were to ask for Ludo’s wife’s tail.”
“N-No, it wouldn’t… Both me and my wife would be proud to help our saviors.”

Her cheeks were flushed red as she was looking at us, but it didn’t look like she was against it.

Their reactions matched a human’s, and the only real difference between us were their beast traits. Their clothes were made of cloth or leather and looked quite shabby, and they also revealed a lot more skin compared to ours, but that was the best the tiger-race could produce for now. Humans would be too ashamed of dressing like that, but I guessed there were also some cultural differences that influenced their outfit choice.

My mind drifted back to the tiger-race’s proposal, and Mylarka turned to face me.

“…Do you perhaps want to rub someone else wife’s tail? Or do you want to feel how soft one is? Especially the end, it looks very soft, does it not?”
“Yeah, totally. But I wasn’t thinking that much into it… I mean, I was only wondering if it was fine to do it with Riko’s.”
“I was thinking that an adult’s tail and a child’s were different, but… Sorry, how old is Riko?”
“She’s thirteen. A full-fledged adult, given that we reach adulthood at twelve.”
“Lady Riko is the chief’s great-great-grandchild, and everyone in her generation longs to have her.”

She was what? That meant that she was part of the chief’s bloodline, right?
Her entire family was the core of their tribe, and given Riko’s relation with the chief, it couldn’t be excluded that many of their tribe fellows shared that same blood.

“…Wait a minute. Does it have a special meaning if an adult woman of your kin lets a human’s guy smell like her?”
“Well, I am sure it means that there is an interest from her side, but fear not, that does not necessarily mean that she wants to grow a family together. There is no law like that either. I doubt that Lady Riko asked you to touch her tail too, given that she is already old enough to discern certain things.”

The four women nearby Jedah, who just provided a reasonable explanation, wore a wry smile.

I cocked my head, unable of grasping the meaning of his words, and sensed the piercing glare of Mylarka, who had probably guessed it.

◆◇◆

We found the scratched tree outside the village exactly as Riko had said.
A wild boar or some huge beast must’ve rammed into it, leaving it scarred.
Given the size of the tree and the scar, the former should’ve been several centuries old.

Jedah and the others returned to the village first and sent here Riko, who had changed her clothes and got rid of the chains that bound her wrists and ankles. Her beautiful hair was arranged differently, and its colors mixed amber and black together… Even her lips looked different, now painted of a beautiful crimson color.

Mylarka slapped her forehead and looked up at the sky.

If she was a full-fledged adult, was there a meaning behind her dressing up?

“L-Lord savior… before we start, can I ask for something…?”
“Mhmh?!”

Mylarka was glaring daggers at me. I heard her inner voice squeal ‘What the hell was that?!’, and even I was aware that my voice sounded miserably in high spirits… but that’s only because I was wondering what she was going to ask.

“…I want you to touch my tail. I think it’s fluffy and pleasant to the touch… Only for a little bit will be fine.”
“I-I really appreciate the thought, but how can I say it…”
“Riko, does letting someone touch your tail mean something for you?”

Riko pressed her hands on her flushing cheeks and took a few steps away before crouching.

“…Only special people can touch it. But a couple of times will be fine!”
“A-A couple of times…? Give a minute. I’m not trying to become a polygamist or something. Also, we just met, so we don’t know each other. Don’t you think that we should spend more time together and discuss it before taking this step?”
“Why on earth are you talking like you are going to marry her, you damn drunkard?!”
“I might be a drunkard, but I never go too far. I can touch Riko’s tail, but it won’t have a special meaning for me. Would this really be fine?”

I didn’t want to hurt the pure heart of a maiden that was now watching me so innocently, and that’s exactly why I wanted to be clear with her. Stating that I would have never touched it would have been worse, but maybe I was just being too self-conscious.

When Riko recomposed herself, she stood up and approached me again with a kind smile.

“You kept your promise once, so next time we see I’ll let you touch it.”
“Great. I’ll prepare for it, but I can’t promise to be your future husband.”
“…You are so refreshingly disgusting right now, but you made the correct choice. It’s better if she doesn’t expect anything.”

I paid little attention to Mylarka’s nasty remark and confirmed that touching a female’s tail really was a marriage proposal, judging by Riko’s face turning red.

She then lightly run her tail over me to hide my human smell, and I waited to see the same treatment for Mylarka.

“Raise your arms. I need to pass it there too. Don’t worry, you will smell like me.”
“I-I’m sorry… I’m ticklish…”

Mylarka took her overcoat off and raised her arms, and Riko passed her fluffy tail on the masked girl’s weak points while I watched them without the slightest hint of malice. I mean, it was simply an interaction between fellow women… still, Mylarka was glaring at me like I was a filthy worm, and I couldn’t help but avert my gaze.

That very moment, Aileen got tired of waiting and spoke to me.

“Maaan, can I break in?! C’mon! Dick, lemme do it!”

“Wait, I’ll move half of my consciousness there. Things are calm here now.”

“Nice. I could tell that from the tone of your voice. I bet Mylarka did great, but I won’t fail!”

“Girls, don’t mind me if I look absent for a while, please. Just hit me on the head and tell me what happened if something’s going on.”
“O-Oh, are you going there? Do not worry, I will take care of things here.”
“Eh? Where’s he going at this hour?”
“Nowhere. He only has to deal with something and will be less responsive for some time, nothing more.”

After I made sure that they understood, I moved my consciousness into the small spirit.

◆◇◆

My tiny body formed from the rune on Aileen’s chest, and I flew off her dress.

“Woah! T-That was unexpected… You just appear like that?”
“Yeah, sorry for keeping you waiting. Are the others still in there?”

She nodded and stopped her breath to listen to the voices inside the room. Four men were talking in a firm tone.

“Velvechia’s army is on the move to cross the border in the western plains, and if they succeed, we must kidnap any of the princesses. I would go for Manarina, the first princess, but to inherit the prestige of a lord, even the third one would be fine.”
“Sir Lang, I find a bit risky to lay our hands on Princess Manarina on Lord Zevias’s behalf…”
“No one informed me about this. Lord Jean is a fool, but his underlings are quite outstanding. Especially Kirsch, whose beauty and loyalty are rare traits nowadays.”
“Stop, that habit of yours is showing again. Sir Lang is very fond of women, and although I can see why that girl might be alluring… she is still our comrade, you know?”

That was indeed a vulgar and disgusting speech.
Those who spread rumors regarding cute girls should just realize that it’s not cool.

The men in the room were thinking only about themselves and saw women as mere tools.

I wondered what Aileen was thinking about, but it was written all over her covered face. The blue mask she was wearing now had a different color compared to ours.

“I’ll try to go easy on them, but forgive me if my hand slips~♪”

She said in a cheerful tone while wearing her fingerless gloves.

Aileen was about to demonstrate how she earned her title. When I realized it, I felt my blood rushing into my veins, and my tiny body started to shake in excitement.


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Monsters’ Guild – Chapter 29

Bael’s apostle

The leader of the monsters, a humongous frog whose height almost reached five meters, towered over the surrounding monsters. On its head, a crown-like thing showed its strength.

“What the hell is that?!”

The fighting adventurers froze in place, while the frog started to slowly raise its forelegs.

“What is it gonna do?!”

It didn’t look like it was preparing to throw or spit something, and there weren’t any adventurers nearby it.

“Retreat!”

The fighters came back to their senses thanks to Raiz’s shout and started to run.
Then, the frog hit the ground and after putting strength in its legs, it propelled itself onward, jumping over the battlefield and crashing into the walls. No one died from the impact, but once it fell on the ground, its round body helped it to roll a little distance away and regain its stability without problems.

“…”

“…”

“…”

Horror painted the fighters’ faces while they peered at the frog’s face.
It jumped two hundred meters in the blink of an eye.

“D-Don’t let it jump again! Charge!”

Lety was the first to regain her cool, thanks to the large number of unexpected developments she had experienced before as a soldier, and started to once again issue orders to the adventurers.

Countless spears tried to impale the frog, but…

“Why can’t I stab it?!”

The fluids seeping through its hard skin made it too slippery to being stabbed.

“Shit!”

The adventurers tried to attack again, but the frog reacted and flailed its huge legs around, blowing them away. It was like it was trying to drive off some flies.

The one-sided battle was now reversed.

“Use magic! Warriors, push the other monsters back! Those who can’t fight must help the injured to withdraw before they get eaten!”

Trow yelled new orders to keep the soldiers under control.

“Raiz! What is the weak point of that monster?!”

Lety asked, but she didn’t hear the answer she wanted.

“That’s not a monster.”

“What?!”

She couldn’t understand what he just said, and shifted her gaze on the frog. No matter how she looked at it, it was just a giant frog.

“That’s an apostle of Bael… a demon.”

“A demon?!”

“Bael is a demon with a human, a frog, and a cat’s head, and it’s said that sometimes it manifests in the world granting a wish to one of those creatures, like in this case.”

“So, is this Bael?!”

“No, it isn’t. This is one of its underlings. To invoke Bael itself you need a huge amount of sacrifices. On the other hand, this one is just a demon that has spontaneously developed in this world, so it’s just a special case. Probably, it constantly wished for the monsters to find enough food to survive this breeding season, and this is what happened.”

“Okay, how can we defeat it?!”

She now understood the situation, but she still needed to know a way out of it.
Meanwhile, the frog was sending soldiers and adventurers flying, occasionally even monsters.

“Should we try to banish it on another plane?! Or should we just destroy its body?!”

Arrows and spells rained on it, but the formers were ineffective, and the demon could easily ignore everything else with its high magic resistance.

“There’re no such mages in this kingdom, and none of our attacks have any effect!”

Then, the frog was once again preparing to jump straight into the walls.

“Block it!”

Trow shouted at the top of his lungs, knowing that the next attack would have blasted the walls away, making the city vulnerable to the horde of monsters, or even directly jumped them.

The end was drawing closer…

“Only a divine blessing would grant a normal human a chance to defeat an apostle…”

Raiz let out a faint whisper, while everyone’s faces turned blue as the frog was about to slap the earth.

“…But we can do it.”

The tamer kept a straight, cool face, while a thunderous roar pierced the air.
Instead of jumping, the frog body trembled

“…”

“…”

“…What?”

Everyone expected it to blast the wall or jump over it, not to bury itself.

“W-Why is it hiding?!”

The frog was convulsing in horror, exactly like someone who was going to be beaten to death.
But how was that even possible?
Was there even someone who could scare a demon like that?

The next moment, a shadow covered the sun, and the sky turned dark like it was winter. A rumble shook the air violently, and the soldiers looked up only to freeze in fear.

The strongest monster in the world, the unbeatable foe, the lord of the skies, who could even fright demons, was hovering above them.

“Dragon can win this fight.”

Raiz’s strongest servant opened his mouth, and a huge amount of magical power started to flow from his throat. The next moment, an endless stream of fire, Dragon Breath, covered the monsters and their leader, as well as a vast area of the plains.


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By |2018-09-19T00:34:58+00:00August 20th, 2018|Welcome to the Monsters Guild!|3 Comments