「The owner of that weapons shop felt a bit strange……it can’t be.」
Rei walked towards the main gate with Set as he muttered to himself.
What’s wrong? Set asked as he tilted his head while walking next to Rei. Rei stroked Set’s head to tell him it was nothing.
Of course, Rei had skewers, sandwiches and all sorts of snacks in his hands as usual.
While Rei walked along as he ate, he was drawn by a smell drifting from a nearby store and he turned to take a look.
「……That’s right, it will be autumn soon, I should buy some stew. Set, wait here for me.」
Hearing Rei, Set gave a cry of consent as Rei entered the store.
Fortunately, since the 9am bell had already rang, breakfast peak time had already passed and there were a lot fewer customers.
Still, in preparation for lunch, there was a good smell in the dining room that stimulated the appetite.
「Welcome. What would you like?」
When Rei entered the store, he was greeted by a girl in her mid teens, about the same age as Rei. The way she spoke familiarly with Rei and her appearance showed that her job was probably to attract customers.
Rei shook his head at her.
「No, I haven’t come to eat here.」
「Huh? Then why have you come to our store?」
「Actually, I could smell good stewed food from this place. I would like to buy some to take away. ……If possible, an entire pot of stew.」
Hearing Rei’s order, the girl looked back at Rei in surprise.
Seeing that, Rei took out seven silver coins from the cloth bag in his pocket and placed them on the table.
「Including the price of the pot, is this enough?」
「Eh? Eh? Eh? Silver coins……seven!?」
In the city of Gimuru where prices were cheap, the girl was surprised and confused at the amount of money, which an ordinary person wouldn’t think of paying for a meal. However, she immediately pulled herself together……
「Wai-Wait a moment! I’ll call my father right away!」
The girl said that in a fluster and hurried to the kitchen in the back. In less than a minute, she came back with a middle-aged man in his forties.
「Seriously, what is it. I’m still not completely finished cooking.」
「Father, don’t worry about that. We have a special customer!」
As she had a delicate build, the scene of her frantically pulling a much larger middle-aged man was quite funny.
「Ah, customer-san. Sorry for making you wait. This is our cook.」
「What is is, this. ……So, are you a customer? Do you have any business with me?」
「Ah. I smelled something nice from outside the store. I would like to buy that food I smelled if it’s possible. Regarding the price……」
He glanced towards the girl for a moment.
「He will pay 7 silver coins!」
「Haa!? Seven silver coins……no, it’s great to have my dish evaluated as such. However, that’s too much for a pot. Our pot is big enough to cook for 50 people. You won’t be able to finish it before it goes off. I can’t agree to sell my food knowing that it will go off.」
The man was surprised at the seven silver coins but refused to sell his food if it meant that it would just be thrown away. Seeing the character of the chef, Rei gave a friendly smile.
「There’s no problems there. I have an item box.」
Saying that, he showed them the Misty Ring that was on his right arm.
「An item box……ah! That’s right, You’re the adventurer who’s rumored to have a Griffon following him!」
The girl shouted in surprise as she looked at Rei. At her voice, the few customers that were in the store also turned to look at Rei strangely.
「Ah? Rumors? what about them.」
「What, don’t you know father? ……By the way, my father is someone who doesn’t have any interest in listening to rumors. But still, have you not heard anything? An unexpected rookie followed by a Griffon had appeared and was buying up a lot of food from the street stalls.」
It was a different rumor than the ones he had been thinking of.
However, after Rei came to the city of Gimuru, it wasn’t uncommon for the sales of street stalls to rise by several times. Admittedly, Set was a Griffon 2m in length and Rei’s body required a high energy intake. The meals served at the Dusk Wheat where he stayed weren’t enough and so they supplemented their diet with things like skewers and sandwiches, that could easily be purchased at stalls.
If he put them into the Misty Ring, they would also not rot. Because of that effect from the magic item, it also saved him time to buy more in case of emergency situations.
「I don’t know about that, but are you saying I should sell my food to this boy knowing that it will go off and be thrown away?」
Rei nodded at the man’s words.
「Ah. If you will sell it to me, I’ll eat it all gratefully.」
「……Well……fine. If you don’t let it spoil and eat it all up properly. You also told me that my cooking was worth seven silver coins from the smell alone. I usually turn away customers at this time. ……Alright! I understand. Fortunately, there’s enough time before noon to prepare some more and I have a spare pot. I’ll sell it to you boy. Come.」
He made a prompt decision. Saying that in a loud voice, the man took Rei to the kitchen at once.
In the kitchen was a big pot. ……No, based on it’s size it should be called a huge pot rather than a big pot. A large amount of meat and vegetables were boiling in the pot. Rather than a soup, it was closer to a stew.
「As you can see, this is how big it is. It’s not that heavy when it’s empty but there’s plenty inside right now. Even I can’t lift it. Will you have any problems putting it into an item box?」
「Ah. There’s no problems.」
Murmuring, he touched the handle of the pot and said『Store』in his mind. The next moment, the huge pot had already disappeared.
「Uwa~. That’s amazing. It’s the first time I’ve seen an item box being used.」
「Basically, it’s a rare magic item. By the way, can I eat it as it is now? Or would it be better to cook it for longer before eating?」
「That’s right. Since the flavour has already soaked in for long enough, there’s no problem with eating it right away. But if you ask my opinion as a chef, boiling it for another hour before eating it will be best. ……Ah, take this as well. Otherwise, seven silver coins would be too much.」
Saying that, he handed over a basket filled with bread. Everything was freshly baked and was unusually soft and fluffy for bread in the city of Gimuru.
「I won’t say no to that.」
Just like the pot, he stored it into the Misty Ring and continued to converse with them for a few more minutes before leaving the store.
As soon as he left the store, Set gave a cry and walked over. The smell of the stew seemed to have stuck to Rei’s body and stimulated Set’s appetite.
With a wry smile at the situation, Rei took out one of the freshly baked bread and gave it to Set.
They headed for the main gate with Set nodding in satisfaction as he stuffed his mouth with the soft bread.
As usual, he passed his guild card to Ranga at the main gate. Rei handed over the Necklace of Subservient Monster and walked out the front gate with Set.
Ahead, he saw the figures of Freon and Brazos, with weapons at their waists and rucksacks on their backs, holding their food and equipment for camping.
「You, you’re late!」
Seeing Rei and Set, Freon called out to them. Next to her, Brazos looked at Freon in amazement.
「Come one, there’s still some time before we agreed to meet up.」
「But he still made us wait. It’s unbecoming of a man to keep a woman waiting.」
「……Freon, we’re not meeting here for a date you know? In the first place, you shouldn’t expect that of someone who isn’t a noble or a knight.」
Hearing the banter between the two of them, Rei spoke up with a smile.
「That was quick. Is that all you’re bringing along?」
「Mm. In the end, we’re only staying one night. More baggage will only get in the way.」
「I see. Then, pass me your baggage. I did arrive before the time we agreed on, but I was still later than you two. I’ll take of the baggage.」
「Mm? You don’t have to worry about that though? We always take this much with us.」
According to his words, it didn’t matter at all. Brazos shook his rucksack with a calm expression. Next to him, Freon spoke up with an amazed look.
「In the first place, who was it that wanted to bring along a barrel of liquor? I’m not saying you shouldn’t drink, but at least hold off for this request.」
「What are you saying? For Dwarves, its the water of life! Even if there is no food, alcohol is absolutely necessary.」
「Seriously, this is why this Dwarf……」
Giving up halfway, Freon put her hand against her face.
「Ah, here. Don’t worry about it. Even if it’s not heavy, it will still interfere with Brazos’ movements.」
Saying that, Rei wrested the rucksack from Brazos.
「Wait a moment. If Brazos carries it, it will definitely slow him down, but isn’t it the same for you? No, your movements would be restricted even more than Brazos……」
The reason Freon didn’t finish her words was because Rei had quickly stored the rucksack into the Misty Ring. The two of them opened their eyes in surprise as Rei gave a sigh.
「What. Haven’t you heard the rumors that I have an item box?」
Rei asked them in amazement but Freon and Brazos shook their heads silently.
「I only heard the rumors that you were followed by a Griffon.」
「Same. This is the first time I’ve heard that you have an item box.」
At their replies, Rei was puzzled.
Rei didn’t know himself, but compared to the item box, Set was a lot more noticeable. Naturally, the rumors that spread said that Rei was an outstanding rookie followed by a Griffon.
There were also rumors that said he had an item box, but these rumors were mainly spread among adventurers and were hardly known by the general public. Because of that, as Crushing Warriors had only heard rumors from the streets, they hadn’t heard about his item box.
「……Well, that’s good. Should we start a bit sooner then? We can’t do anything to the Harpies by just standing forever in front of the main gate.」
「Ah, Ahh. That’s right. No, my bad. I was just surprised to suddenly see a legendary magic item.」
「True. ……So, Rei. Could you show us your item box for future reference?」
Nodding at Brazos’ words, Rei paused for a moment.
「I don’t mind, but this item box has been set so that only I can use it. I can still show you it though.」
「What? Does that mean that the item box has registered Rei’s magic power?」
When Rei nodded, a curious light appeared in Brazos’ eyes.
「Did the Margrave do that?」
「No, it was my master that gave me this item box.」
When he had received the Misty Ring after entering Zepairu’s hall, Rei had found out that it was the work of Zepairu’s alchemist, Esta Nord. However, as he couldn’t tell them that, Rei said that it was his master’s work.
「I’ve heard the rumors, but your master must considerably skilled. I haven’t seen anyone like that in these times. ……I wish I was that skilled.」
Brazos looked at the Misty Ring around Rei’s right wrist with a bit of envy.
Seeing that, Rei remembered the story Freon had told him in the guild. Brazos had wanted to be a blacksmith but lacked the aptitude for it.
(Even if he lacked the aptitude to be a blacksmith, he still wants to become one.)
Glancing at Freon, it looked like she had remembered the same thing. Giving a small nod, Freon mouthed the word “please”.
「……It can’t be helped. Let’s get to the mountain in time to make a night attack.」
「Mm, thank you. Let’s go at once!」
At Rei’s words, Brazos proceed to head down the highway with gusto. Rei and Freon looked at each other wryly before following after him.