There was alteration to the slime’s geographical knowledge after ravaging Frederica. It now knew of the existence of a road that lead beyond the village at the foot of the mountain.
Well, although it did know about it, it still hadn’t mobilized due to running the risk of being discovered by humans. Even so, it understood the capability of adventurers—things that were its natural enemy—to some degree, so it wound up attacking beasts that were making the areas along the road their territory.
Wagons coming and going through the rural road were things that typically wouldn’t stray too far off of the path. This was because of their wariness against wild animals and bandits.
Therefore, it was able to unhurriedly catch and digest animals some distance from the road. Of course it would spend its days on the mountain and in the cave while the sun was high, but it would go out and hunt beasts as night fell. Due to the slime relying on its instincts at first, it had consumed all of the mountain’s animals and there was no food left for it on the mountain.
It was alright with assaulting the domesticated animals in the village at the base of the mountain, but even that had its limits. Although the slime wouldn’t die if it didn’t eat, it had an appetite and hungered.
Additionally, it needed to prepare food for Frederica. It violated her during the day and attacked beasts along the road at night.
This was the slime’s life.
Several days passed like this. Around ten days after Frederica’s group went missing, there was a certain commission posted on the adventurer’s guild’s bulletin board in the royal capital.
As the royal capital’s guild was overflowing with various work, the addition of another commission document wasn’t something unusual.
However, the person that started this commission—what they had brought in was a problem.
Two days after Frederica had gone missing, several of the the village at the foot of the mountain’s elders searched the mountain with the abandoned mine on it. They were terrified, but because adventurers had gone missing, it had already become a problem for knight or mage corps.
They looked around to at least get some evidence. With that thought in mind, the several elders found a splendid staff, as well as the adventurer group’s luggage.
Although the black ooze was able to dissolve things like meat and plants, clothing and leather armor took time to melt away so it discarded them out of its body.
Finding those things, the elders brought it to the royal capital. For an incident like the disappearance of adventurers, even if the village didn’t prepare a reward, the country would prepare a reward in accordance with the details.
As such, because the person to go missing was Frederica, someone famous in the guild and had a fair bit of ability, it just so happened that many people were interested in the commission’s details. A mage had gone missing, leaving behind her own staff. Staves could be considered as a mage’s identification.
What had happened? No mage would leave their staff behind and disappear.
Something must have happened to Frederica’s and the others’ bodies. That was the adventurer’s guild’s view on it.
“Should we do it?”
However, even with that said, no one was going to jump on board with it. With that much of a reward, there was that much of a risk to their lives.
Their lives came first, nothing else would matter if they died.
Frederica was famous amongst the guild’s youths and was even recognized as a skilled mage. With that in consideration as well, everyone avoided the commission.
In truth it was because she had let down her guard and made a mistake due to the dark of the night, choosing the wrong kind of magic to use.
Even so, the people in the guild wouldn’t know about something like that.
Like that, the commission document for surveying the abandoned mithril mine was left posted for several days.
Everyone turned their eyes from it, taking the commission documents posted around it. It slowly became the only one in its area on the bulletin board, alone.
A small hand reached out towards that document, grasping it.
Following that, a quiet voice that seemed to drown out the guild’s clamor could be heard.
“… This commission.”
A small woman could be seen; she was carrying a disproportionately large staff and stretching on her tiptoes for that commission document.
Her long, beautiful and seemingly transparent platinum hair was gathered to the left side of her head, hanging down low in a ponytail. She read the commission document with somewhat drowsy eyes.
Her brown eyes moved left to right and back as she looked over the document, reading line-by-line.
“Satia, you’re taking that commission?”
One of the men in the guild called out to the mage who had stopped in front of the bulletin board and read the document.
Satia. With no family name, she was a former female slave. Satia had some potential for magic, so she was bought as a slave and used as an adventurer while obeying her adventurer master.
Her experiences as an adventurer were lengthy, she was a woman who became an adult the moment she first passed through the guild’s entrance. Although she had a somewhat doll-like figure and was fairly short, she gave others the impression of being more beautiful than adorable.
Satia was around half a head shorter than others, even those the same age as her or younger. And that’s why the large staff she carried was disproportional to her, it was practically just as tall as her. It caused others to experience something like being attracted to a pretty girl.
She was also clad in a thick nun-like black robe. Adventurers would generally give off more of a boorish impression, but this girl was small and lovely—that was the sort of impression she gave.
She looked up towards the man that called out to her with her drowsy eyes.
“But y’know, that one’s about Frederica goin’ missin’ yeah? You guys ready for a load like that?”
“… Is it? I will discuss it with Goshujin-sama.”
All the man that was Satia’s master had told her was that he wanted her to look for a commission.
The reward was good and the commission itself was the only one that stood out, but she listened to the man’s advice. She had been treated as a slave in the past, so she was bad at interacting with men.
So even though she understood that he came with good intentions, she kept a distance away from him. Answering with a vaguely unsociable response, she moved away without even giving a single word of gratitude.
Everyone in the guild adored her like a doll, but she herself didn’t feel she was worth their time.
She put some time in looking over the other commission documents, but there were just things like garbage cleaning in the royal capital’s back alleys or medicinal herb collections remaining.
They were all more like the work a child would do for pocket change than what an adventurer would do. Even their rewards were lacking.
“… This one.”
“Ah, feel free to ask if you need any help.”
In the end, her response was curt.
Even though she understood in her heart that it would have been better for her to say her thanks.
Well, the man simply smiled complacently at Satia’s cute voice and appearance, followed by returning to his companions without taking it to heart.
In the corner of the bustling adventurer’s guild was a young man around twenty years of age.
It was Satia’s master, Alfred Will. With blond hair and blue eyes, he was an agreeable youth with a good-natured smile.
Satia placed the commission document she’d taken onto the desk where her master sat.
“… For just that, the reward is good.”
Saying that, Alfred looked over the commission document Satia presented him with.
Satia stared at his profile silently.
This was the sole area in the guild that felt quiet.
“… Frederica-san seems to be missing.”
“Yea, looks like it…”
Although Satia wasn’t acquainted with Frederica herself, Alfred had done several commissions together with her.
The image Alfred had in his mind of Frederica was that of a bright and sociable mage, brimming with beauty and will.
Although they weren’t at the point of being friends, it wasn’t as though they didn’t know each other at all. She had gone missing and this commission document found its way to him.
Even though it was dangerous, he wasn’t interested in leaving it alone and deserting her.
“The reward’s good too, so how about we take it?”
If a slave’s master decided on something, they had no way of rejecting it. Although she didn’t know what kind of person the woman named Frederica was, she would protect her master for the commission.
Her unshakable determination had become her core. When Alfred stood up, he moved over to Satia.
“It is dangerous for just us two, I want to hire a few people.”
“… Is that so?”
From Satia’s point of view, Alfred’s skill in the sword and magic were at considerable levels. There were likely few in his age group that could surpass him in Fonteau.
Even so, this young man didn’t relax his guard nor did he drown in self conceit. He would accomplish commissions by minimizing dangers to the utmost of it ability.
For Satia, her master called Alfred was an existence that could even be called a [Hero] that saved her from hell.
He bought her as a slave, but hadn’t used her as a woman*. Satia didn’t know if Alfred had some other woman in his heart, but it would soon be two years since she was picked up by him.
She had never entertained him. He had never even asked. Of his orders for her, none were unreasonable.
It was like Alfred treated her carefully, like a younger sister or a daughter. From what Satia knew of what people who bought slaves were like, it could be said that Alfred was simply too kind.
Although the mage didn’t say much and was emotionally lacking, she still harbored the emotions of a girl her age.
She would feel affection towards those that treated her nicely. He was excellent in both appearance and talent, but most important was that his nature was good as well.
However, their positions were that of master and slave. Her chest had tightened before she realized it.
Satia’s platinum hair shook as she chased after the young man heading to inform the guild head that he would be accepting the commission.
Her eyes looked drowsy—as they always did—but they were fixed firmly onto her master’s back.