Translator’s Corner: To make releases more regular I’m going to be splitting chapters into two parts since they’re so long. Small chapters will still be normal though. I’ll see how this goes before making a finaly decision.
Giant Magic Steel Dragonfly
Time to eat.
Stones are piled to stand up two iron bars. A large black pot is hung from the iron bars over the fire.
A wooden bowl is filled with hot water and placed it to the side.
A large onion, green pepper, and fish are put in the hot pot, then I watch the brown juices boil.
It’s making me hungry.
The smell of the steaming vegetables and salt drifts.
I’ll be a little extravagant today.
Taijiki wanted to offer his gratitude and opened his supplies to prepare food.
Everyone eats, drinks, and sips the hot soup.
I can take a fresh meal out of the item box when I want, but that’s not important, everyone is eating happily, so I keep them company and smile.
The red-haired Fran is smiling too.
The invisible hawk is perched on her right shoulder.
She came back from reconnaissance a while ago with the hawk on her shoulder, she may have been able to get in contact.
I appreciate the beautiful smiling woman.
“…Shuya, you’ve already seen it, but there is more than just goblins and orcs here. From here on out the Giant Magic Steel Dragonfly (Alloy Dragonfly) appears.”
Gomez emphasizes the name of the monster with his beard soaked in soup juices.
Fran’s face has recovered…Ma, as we’re talking we get on topic.
“…What are they?”
“You don’t know? This place is famous. It’s an enormous dragonfly monster. You can acquire magic steel if you defeat one. They’re famous for their magic steel armor.”
Ah, that reminds me, Marquess Chardonnay mentioned them.
“A giant dragonfly? I haven’t seen one.”
“Is that so. Unfortunately, once the marshes increase you’ll see more than your fair share. Also, we’ll probably encounter adventurer clans hunting them.”
Eating a cabbage-like vegetable, Fran joins the conversation.
“…Magic steel armor? I’ve heard rumors that half of Holkerbam’s adventurer clans are employed by trading firms.”
Gomez and Fran seem to know a lot about magic steel.
“It can’t be helped. So many giant dragonflies breed in the marshes regardless of the season, and except Osberia, it’s the main export. Adventurers gather where there is money to be made. Right?”
“Where there is profit there are merchants.”
“So that’s how it is? Gahaha.”
Gomez and Fran repeat their Q&A while laughing.
I leave my seat while they’re talking.
I return to Popobumu with a sauce plate.
I am worried about my prisoner, Misty.
Her hands are tied behind her, sitting on Popobumu’s back she is staring at the Hayme river while behaving herself.
Rollo is sleeping above Misty’s knee on her robe.
Rollo looks extremely attached.
When I approach, Misty looks in my direction and speaks.
“Hey, we’ll be in Holkerbam soon, what are you going to do about me?”
“What to do, should I kill you? Sell you? This is hard~.”
“…I’d appreciate it if you didn’t kill me.”
Her gaze falls on the ground.
She mutters with a distant expression.
Ma, I mentioned killing her, but I have no intention of doing so.
She’s a criminal, but I’ve killed and tortured humans before.
However, I can’t say I’m perfect, I’m a blood-sucking monster after all.
I’m similar to a person, but my existence deviates from standard logic.
Besides, she’s a beautiful woman. (TL: There’s the Shuya we know and love!)
She’s also a skill holder, and I learned interesting things from her.
I’ll probably keep her alive. Ah, that reminds me, I have the permits for a slave trainer that Kuna had.
So, should I enslave Misty?
Speaking of slaves…
The slaves sold in Hector all wore a black collar.
Those should be sold somewhere-
“-Shit, hey, say something, don’t just stand there being quiet.”
Misty disturbs my line a thought.
She appeals with desperate eyes.
“Ah, I was thinking about something. Sorry. After all, I won’t kill you.”
“Then you’ll make me a slave?”
Mmm, talking like this is unreasonable.
I did kill her brother…It doesn’t sit well with me.
I’m particularly worried about enslaving her since she keeps dropping shit, shit, all the time.
I could release her already. I’ll think about it.
Besides, I keep thinking about how beautiful she is. (TL: Shuya, EXPLODE!)
Oi, that’s important to me. (TL: Uh, sorry.) I’m happy to meet a beautiful woman, but…I guess that’s it.
I’m okay with unquestionably killing someone if they aim for my life.
I could let her go.
“…Depending on the circumstance, I may let you go.”
“So…eh? That, really?”
“You’d let me go? It can’t be, you’ve fallen for me? Are you after my body? But isn’t it obvious I would sell for a lot with this seal on my head? This skill is proof that I used to be a noble. If you sold me I would go for at least five white gold coins…”
Misty appears upset.
Her browns eyes are darting back and forth while she talks.
I wouldn’t want to sell her although the price would be high. I guess the appeal is the opposite…
Such a trivial thing, it doesn’t need to be said.
“…Fine white gold coins, that certainly is a lot. I would be right to sell you. However, as of now, I have to say over your life-and-death. So, I can sell or kill you at my own convenience. Moreover, I have money. I don’t need to sell you. Plus, I’m a man, so of course, I’m interested in your body. However, I won’t force myself on you.”
“Uh…weirdo… I can tell from the purple glitter on your grey overcoat that the cloth is extremely high-quality. …You wiped out the thieves group, that spear ax isn’t an ordinary halberd.”
“That’s right. Because of that, I can afford to let you go, but…”
Misty looks at me as what starts to find hope.
I meet her eyes, raise a finger and speak.
“First, don’t look for revenge. Second, don’t enter a thief group. Third, you can go to any city aside from Hector. Fourth, do not try to kill me. By the way, next time you attack me I won’t hesitate to kill you.”
“Is that enough?”
“It’s fine. However, can you really stop looking for revenge?”
I focus on Misty’s eyes.
She silently returns my stare until she is forced to look away.
“…What you said might be impossible. I am known as someone from the Gustave House. The nobility from Gustave had everything stripped from us, and we were driven out of Hector… my father and mother died in despair. It’s all because of that older brother. I want to find and kill him. I also want to kill the nobles of Osberia who destroyed the Gustave house. I especially can’t let the Marquess get away…the people living in Hector are horrible…haa, it’s no use, no matter what, I can’t let go of my hate.”
She’s honest about her hate.
“It can’t be forgotten?”
“Oh well…the chains of hatred are coiled around my heart.”
Misty’s brown eyes are burning.
Indeed, deep in her eyes I can see a swirling black chain.
“Honesty. You could have lied though.”
“You spoke kindly about releasing me… I didn’t want to lie to you. I wonder about that?”
“Haha, it’s an extremely admiral feeling.”
“It seems like I’ll become a slave, shitty woman, my hobby of listening, letting it escape, I heard something kind after such a long time, the kindness made me waver.”
Misty’s face turned red.
“If you have such feelings, I feel like you can forget vengeance….”
“…Perhaps. There might be other roads.”
It feels like the chains of hate disappeared from her eyes.
Then, even if it’s a lie, isn’t it okay?
Even if 【Osberia Kingdom】 is damaged, I don’t serve this country.
This isn’t definite proof, but I want to believe her.
“That’s right. I believe Misty can find other roads. Like, an adventurer?”
“Ma, it’s an example. I’ll let you go tomorrow when we arrive in 【Holkerbam】.”
“…Thank you. Giving me a chance to restart…I really couldn’t have argued if you killed me.”
“It’s fine. Sleep soon, ah, wait. It’s cooled down but eat this. It’s good.”
I say so and temporarily remove her shackles, then hand her the pot filled with food.
I decided to free her, besides there’s are a lot of things I don’t understand about slavery. Well, I could have the merchant Taijiki teach me about buying and selling slaves.
I walk away from Misty toward the covered wagon Taikiji is in.
Taijiki appears from the covered wagon.
“I have a few questions, is now okay?”
“Eh, hai. It’s fine. I’ll come out in a minute. -So, how may I help you?”
Taijiki comes down from the wagon and speaks.
“It’s sudden, but I some questions I’d like to ask.”
“Eh, since it’s Shuya, you can ask anything.”
“…If I were to sell the prisoner I took, what slave merchant would you recommend?”
“A recommendation. That, after all, you should go with a slave merchant from a larger firm. Still, if you’re going to sell…I would like you to sell to my trading firm. After all, my life was saved by Shuya. I can ask the chairman to buy her for a high price.”
Is that so. He can’t recommend a specific firm.
“I see. I’ll remember that when I sell. And then, what are the qualifications of slave dealer?”
“The country provides a license. If you have the qualifications, you can participate in slave auctions, and other transactions with slave traders are possible. They’re first class since you can’t buy or sell slaves at a slave trading firm if you’re a first-time customer.
First-time customers are refused.
I remember playing with an apprentice geisha-san.
“There’s such a store, huh? How does enslavement happen? And then, I would like to hear how one becomes a slave trader.”
Taijiki nods and quickly continues his explanation.
“To directly perform an enslavement you need a document of contract, a collar of subjugation, and the blood of the master and blood of the slave are dropped on the collars. In regards to slave merchants, the subjugation collar, the person, and the documents are held, if you already belong to a trading, you can be considered a slave merchant.”
It’s useless unless there’s a trading firm because they’re professionals.
This is enough from the perspective of a customer.
“…I see, for example, saying I had a slave, could I sell them to a different adventurer without going through a merchant?”
“It’s possible, but the private selling and purchase of a slave isn’t realistic. A new collar of subjugation is needed, and the documentation and collar are expensive if one doesn’t belong to a trading firm. Also, if a slave resides in a city without permission they are penalized by the government.”
“Application? Sounds complicated.”
“It’s alright because when a slave is bought from a merchant who belongs to a trading firm all the government procedures are handled.”
“Ah, it’s like that.”
With the blank subjugation collar, qualification certificate, and required slave documentation, after all, I’ll need to leave it to a slave trader if I don’t enter a firm.
I won’t be able to enslave someone easily.
It’s too much to do myself.
Still, in distant lands, there may be places where the slavery system is different than this.
In the end, I ask about this area.
“…I understand. I heard what I wanted to know. Thank you for taking the time to teach me.”
I politely lower my head to Taijiki-sensei.
“Well then, see you tomorrow.”
When we arrive at the city tomorrow, I will let Misty go.
I walk away from Taijiki using <Night Vision>.
I walk along the night bank of the Haym river.
Pale and purple flowers dot the green shores.
The evening Haym river… a gentle breeze caresses my cheeks.
A refreshing cold stings my cheeks.
Guess I’ll sit here.
I choose a suitable location where no flowers are blooming.
I take a blanket from a bag, place it on my waste, hug my knees and enjoy the temporary break.
Rollo has come to my side.
She sits beside me quietly.
The chilly evening wind from the Haym river brushes her black fur.
We enjoy a beautiful night sky under the moon together.
The dark blue sky has two moons. The bigger one is missing.
However, because the way the light shines from the fragmented pieces of the moon, it creates a beautiful sight.
The moonlight is reflected on the river surface.
Silver ripples of light flicker.
Rollo watches the silver river expressionlessly with her bright crimson eyes.
Clouds cover the moon, and the river surface darkens.
Once the clouds flow and the moon returns, the river surface glitters silvery again.
Rollo has been watching the scene expressionlessly and now looks around her little head.
Like this, with the moonlight from the Haym river illuminating Rollo, I fall asleep.