The Lunéville Branch
“Ilya. Good work today.”
“Yeah, good work.”
Ria turned up at the counter from the office.
Ria was a black cat beastkin, hardly different from a human other than her ears and tail. Her bluish-black hair grew down to her shoulders, bobbing here and there. A very charming beautiful girl.
“Ilya, Lydia-san No. 5 so can you go to the kitchen?”
No. 5 was for clocking out of work, No. 7 was for the restroom, No. 10 was for criminals, etc. In the guild, it became a custom to talk by saying numbers.
By the way, Lydia was the former proprietress of an old-time d’hote restaurant. The branch made use of the d’hote menu without changing it, but Ilya used her skill to alter the seasonings a bit.
Ilya left the reception to Ria and headed to the kitchen.
“Ilya-chan’s in the kitchen!?”
“Did you hear that you bastards!?”
Though she heard the cheers behind her, she pretended to not notice and continued.
When she put on an apron and washed her hands after entering the kitchen, she came across Lydia leaving work. Ilya stopped walking, bowing respectfully.
“Thank you very much for today.”
“No, that’s what I was hired for right?”
Lydia laughed along with the kitchen workers cheerfully.
“Always with the formality.”
“Because I am grateful for you doing this for me!”
“Really! Because originally you bankrupted me!”
“”” Ahahaha “””
From the overlapping laughter, Ilya’s heart warmed a little.
“Ilya! The orders!”
In the kitchen, a frantic voice could be heard coming from Rachelle, a human waitress in the dining area. Ilya ran to the station in a hurry. The human species spreads far and wide, acquainting themselves with other races. A general race name for those that don’t have animal parts or the extreme skeletons of dwarves and the like.
Entering, Ilya took the grilling area spot. She could easily adjust the temperature in precise amounts thanks to the [Appraisal] skill, as well as adjust the amount of seasonings.
“Ilya-chan, you’re so lively compared to when you’re at the reception desk!”
“It’s just the shabby men then, don’t you want to be lavished with compliments as well!?”
“Ahahaha! That’s for sure!”
While the madam was having a conversation like that, she continued with her skilled cooking. Even with the assistance of her skill, Ilya was completely beaten by her in proficiency.
(Ah~, I want to be with Ria more.)
Likely due to her retaining her memories from prior to her reincarnation, she was still completely uninterested in the opposite sex. Rather, taking advantage of being the same sex, she wanted to flirt with Ria.
She grappled with the fire for four hours while holding such worldly desires.
“Chocolate banana parfait, vanilla ice cream…”
It was time for the restaurant to close. From late night onward, it became a bar with nothing but light snacks on the menu.
Endurance wasn’t a big deal, but there’s no way to get around mental fatigue.
“Ilya, good work today.”
“Yeah, you too.”
Frank, who was taking over the kitchen now, called out to Ilya. Like many humans, he had blue eyes and brown hair. He always wore a gentle smile, the type of man like a reliable elder brother.
The townspeople consider him an innocent-looking man, but the reality was different. Assuming the position of guild branch manager at the young age of twenty, his status and skills were higher than kingdom knights’. Above all, he was influential enough to drive out the thieves guild that built its nest in Lunéville. That was the true nature of the man named Frank.
“Have you taken your break yet today?”
“No, I wanted to prepare the kitchen for tomorrow.”
Though Ilya used a polite way of speaking as a default for anyone, she used it for him to show sincerity.
She owed Frank a debt of gratitude. She was outclassed by him.
“Is that so? Thanks as always.”
Thank you. Whenever she heard words of thanks, she was attacked by guilt.
In Ilya’s own status, her charm level, which is categorized in the sub-status, was 9999.
The effect was tremendous, continuous activation, S-rank intensity, and resist immune. Those who have seen the owner, those who were seeing the owner, those who were hearing the owner’s voice; it interfered with their minds, turning them into slaves.
Since the effect couldn’t voluntarily be turned off, it could already be called a curse.
Consequently, she used one of her unique skills, [God King Barrier]. [God King Barrier] blocked both the owner’s and opponent’s physical attacks, magic, spirit magic, ancient magic, sacred magic, and curse magic. Nullifying all skills, it interrupted all status abnormalities and mind interference.
Though the barrier was invincible, it consumed 999 magical power per second. Ilya being able to maintain the barrier with her nearly inexhaustible supply of magical power was a feat.
Although using the [God King Barrier] would stop things affecting her status, whenever she was talked to with kind words she would be seized with anxiety, “It isn’t stopping the effect”.
She always brooded deeply while stocking goods. When she came back to her senses from the voice, Frank was looking at Ilya’s face with an expression of worry.
“Are you alright?”
“Ah, sorry. I was just thinking a little.”
She used the [Alchemy] skill and [Mixing] skill to create the remaining miso and soy sauce.
Since Frank knew that Ilya had these skills, she was able to use them without hesitation.
She actually used ancient magic’s space-time magic for maturing and fermenting, but she convinced him it was alchemy. Modern people couldn’t decode ancient magic, with only two people in this world being able to use it. Moreover, space-time magic was designated a taboo.
Since she didn’t want troublesome things as much as possible, she asked the agriculture guild to prepare sake and vinegar for miso and soy sauce, but the results weren’t that good.
Continuing to prepare the soy sauce and miso for a while, she also prepared desserts like iced pudding, tiramisu, and créme d’anjou.
“Branch manager, I’ll be leaving first.”
“Yeah. Good work today.”
The moment she heard the casual words of appreciation, Ilya yet again realized how comfortable her current circumstances were.
She woke up early in the morning after sleeping soundly.
Brushing her teeth and taking a shower, she changed from her pajamas into her exclusive equipment [Miko’s Restraint].
Her bra, panties, long gloves and knee socks were snow white with light blue lines here and there.
Though they were originally cursed tools that lowered someone’s status and turned them into an evil god’s sacrifice, Ilya inherited them when she defeated an evil god. She increased the effect of her equipment by twenty times with the [Training] skill and equipped [God’s Divine Protection], a choker that doubled each piece of equipment’s effectiveness. With this she was roughly at the level of an average grown man, though since it had no effect on her sub-status, [God King’s Barrier] was essential.
Putting her uniform on top of those, Ilya descended to the first floor. Though it still wasn’t time for work, she was still ready to leave at any moment in case of emergency. Doing this first thing in the morning had become a habit.
As she went behind the counter from the staff entrance near the office’s entrance, she greeted the two receptionists. Human relations was important.
“Ah, morning Ilya.”
Ria was at the reception desk today.
Her tail swaying above her rather short skirt doubled the cuteness, healing Ilya’s heart.
The other person, Luke, was human. Though he was generally blunt when interacting with Ilya, he was really just trying to hide his embarrassment.
Ria also didn’t mind him and told Ilya there was a message for her.
“Hector-san was looking for you. He said he wanted you to go to him as soon as I saw you.”
“Hector-san? Got it.”
“E-even though you said you got it, why haven’t you stopped stroking it?”
It was natural since Ria was so cute.
(Please let me heal a bit more.)
When she thought that, a group of two that seemed to be tourists came in.
Ilya reluctantly stopped, deciding to head towards Hector.
Hector was the town’s lord.
Earning military achievements in the neighboring country Filéalemis’ civil war, he was originally a human knight given a court rank and territory. However, a commoner rising up drew opposition from nobles. Driving him away was a huge problem at the time, so he become the lord of Lunéville.
He himself wasn’t dissatisfied, though, and could often be seen strolling through the town. Due to Hector’s friendly disposition, he gave aid to townspeople that didn’t have jobs while exchanging jokes with them.
When she arrived in front of the lord’s manor, the private gatekeeper guard told her that Hector had headed to the west gate. Of course, Ilya was accustomed to being sent around this much and didn’t get discouraged.
While exchanging greetings with people on the street, she once again arrived at the west gate. She saw Hector surrounded by escorts and gatekeeper guards.
“Ah, Ilya. Morning. Sorry for calling you.”
Hector bowed his head.
She felt like a lord shouldn’t depreciate themselves for a person, but she decided to leave that alone since the surrounding people were smiling wryly.
“No, it’s fine. Rather, is something wrong?”
That is, when he called for Ilya, nine out of ten times it was related to a request for the guild.
Though Charon was generally in charge of public relations, the office’s staff couldn’t leave the office due to accumulating paperwork. The branch manager casually leaving the branch would also be a problem.
So Ilya was recognized as the errand runner.
As for the lord, he was perceptive and tight-lipped. Though he called Ilya because he had a general evaluation of her knowledge and judgement capabilities, towards the girl who retained memories from her previous life as a man, that intention was never transmitted.
“There’s no conclusive evidence yet, but… apparently, it seems that a rondébear appeared on the westward road.”
The Rondéville bear, commonly called the rondébear. Inhabiting areas throughout the country Rondéville, it was a bear-type monster that had well-developed and powerful forelimbs. Gentle for a monster, it was low risk since it was omnivorous. However, it would go into a rage and start attacking people immediately after waking from hibernation, becoming unmanageable for unskilled mercenaries. It was a comparatively high leveled monster.
However, it was the middle of spring, and omnivores should’ve had no reason to appear on the road.
“… That’s strange.”
It wasn’t just about the food.
That group of four from the day before accepted a monster subjugation commission around there, near the road to the west.
Though it would be good if it was needless worrying, it would be troublesome if they were related.
“I’ll return to the branch and look into it at once. Will a subjugation commission be put out?”
“Yeah. Please give me a quote.”
“Alright. Then, later.”
When she returned to the branch, the dining room was crowded with people who came to eat breakfast.
(Work, you guys!)
She kept complaints like that to her mind, immediately heading towards the office.
“Claude-san, estimate the reward for a rondébear subjugation commission, please and thank you.”
“A rondébear huh? Got it! I wonder what the going rate is~”
While Frank was young, Claude had been working at the branch office the longest and handled his work pretty quickly.
After that, he looked towards Desiree, a dog beastkin woman sitting down opposite of Claude.
“Desiree-san, please look for a subjugation commission near the west road.”
“Is around two months fine?”
“Yes, thank you.”
Though almost everyone at the branch was Ilya’s senior, Ilya always felt admiration towards their obedience. They worked fast and didn’t put stock in useless pride, nothing but skilled personnel like that.
Since she was no longer worried about the preparations of the subjugation with this, she went outside to investigate something.
(My clothes… are they fine as-is?)
Just then, she noticed Ria and Luke’s gazes from the reception desk.
“Is something wrong?”
“N-no! It’s nothing!”
Ria turned back to the reception desk, flustered and blushing. She thought it was odd, but since it was so adorable she decided to not mind it.
Watching Ilya’s back as she continued out of the branch office, Ria turned towards Luke while waving her arms buzzingly.
“Just now, Ilya looked so cool!”
“… We have to obey the rules.”
Ria had on a flushed expression and Luke recalled Ilya from just now with a wry smile.
Though Ilya didn’t seem like it, when an emergency request came in to be prepared, her atmosphere completely changes from her usual languidness.
“I wonder if a woman can do it. You’d better not show off!”
“You’re also aiming for her, Ria? Your names are similar too.”
“That has nothing to do with it! … Let’s try it.”
Clearing her throat, she gave a cool expression.
“You don’t look foolish enough to do it.”
“I haven’t said anything yet!?”
“You guuuys, your salaries are going to be lowered if you keep playing arooound.”
“” Welcooome “”
Hearing Claude’s voice from the office, the two straightened themselves and turned back towards the dining room.
The dining room was filled with the regular customers’ laughter from seeing their exchange and what happened immediately after.
Meanwhile, having left the branch office, Ilya headed towards the south gate.
There was a soldier on guard watching the gate, but loosened his expression when he saw it was Ilya.
“Oh, Ilya-chan. Are you heading out?”
“Yes. For a little stroll.”
“Thank you very much.”
Then, detouring a little from the south gate, she advanced towards the forest to the southwest.
Even if she went to investigate, she wouldn’t set foot inside the forest. Whether it be Ilya’s past life or current, insects were her weak point. She couldn’t enter forests, they were filled with insects.
“I wonder if this place is fine?”
Confirming that there was no signs of anyone nearby, she activated her unique skill [Clairvoyance].
However, it had been a long time since she’d seen areas like a forest. Making a mistake in the adjustments, Ilya very clearly saw a large quantity of insects.
Without holding back, she screamed because of the horror. Before long she came to her senses and was harassed by chills.
(… Uuu… gross… But… the results were good.)
She then went back to the branch office, clinging to Ria for a while to soothe her emotions.
Hector, coming to receive the estimate, heard that name from Ilya in the reception office and was speechless.
The tyrant spider was a huge monster spider with the head of an adult human male.
It’s mouth could swallow a person whole and its exoskeleton couldn’t be damage by unskilled attacks. Its fangs could crush iron and its talons had a paralyzing poison, preferring to swallow its prey alive.
Its legs were agile and had high jumping power, could move quickly, and its threads couldn’t be burned even by low rank magic.
The title of ‘tyrant’ wasn’t just for decoration, it was a monster suited to be the forest’s boss. Among the bosses Ilya memorized, its degree of risk was at the top.
(The other monsters were afraid since something like that was in the forest and ran away then?)
This was the reason why the rondébear appeared along the west road.
Frank was also there, wearing a bitter expression.
“Then, Ilya. You believe that more monsters will be expelled from the forest?”
“Yes. If you get more information from Willville to the west and Ahrew Fort farther southwest than the forest, I believe we will have more conclusive evidence.”
By Ilya’s conjecture, the amount of subjugation requests for monsters coming from the forest would increase.
“Frank. As the branch manager, I want to hear your opinion.”
“The tyrant spider is a disaster designated monster. It seems wise to deal with it immediately by inviting large scale participation from guild headquarters.”
“How long would it take?”
Hector looked towards Ilya.
To prepare the request, it would take a day using messenger magic just for Rondéville’s guild headquarters to become aware of it. But for the request to be passed from there to each branch, it would need five days to gather the personnel. Moreover, since the means of transportation coming to Lunéville was limited…
“Ten days until the departure. As for the reward, an equal split of twenty million gils?”
“Just ten days to get them together?”
Hector’s and Frank’s questions to Ilya were about separate things.
“In the first place, ten days doesn’t leave any extra time, and is also meant as a sieve. Since only the truly strong will be here to take action.”
In many ways. Of course, those words were muttered inwardly.
“Twenty million is the basic reward. If you claim retrieved raw materials as additional rewards, there won’t be able complaints.”
Every top ranked guild member thirsted more for materials than money.
Then, rather than adding a monetary reward for claimed materials, that delicious condition ought to catch their interest.
“Moreover, commission the county’s knights as well. Hector-san, please make the arrangements.”
“Threaten headquarters and the country huh?”
Hector smiled wryly.
As if it was a misunderstanding, Ilya produced her best smiling face.
She had nothing but good intentions.
Towards headquarters, it had the hidden meaning: “You can obtain twenty million and rare materials. However, the country will take it if you aren’t quick!”
Towards the country, it had the hidden meaning: “Rather than paying twenty million and the intermediary fee to the guild, the salary and food for fifty knights for a month is cheaper. Please do your best before the guild takes the initiative!”
(You know, good intentions.)
Once again thinking it over, Ilya nodded in her heart.
“Though there certainly isn’t any time to spare, isn’t that a little rushed?”
“But aren’t spiders yucky?”
“” … “”
Since she was answering seriously, they were even more amazed.
Though they weren’t fully satisfied with a few things, Ilya judged there were no rejections and made one last suggestion.
“For this commission, would it be alright for me to put my name on the commission label?”
“I don’t mind but…”
“Could I ask why?”
Naturally, it was unnatural for a guild branch’s reception to submit a commission for a town’s serious affair. Understanding that the two were doubtful, Ilya put on a smile and gave a reason that wasn’t outrageous.
Ten days later, it was the appointed date.
Only five people gathered.
However, when Frank showed them in to the reception office, Hector was not disappointed. However, he was confused and his head couldn’t keep up.
“Ilya Ilya I-ly-aaa~!”
“That hurts, Lula.”
The one who had just embraced Ilya and rubbed her cheeks against her was Lula, a dark elf with brown skin and long ears.
Though elves and dark elves were primarily on bad terms with each other, Lula had completely embraced Ilya. Rather than saying she liked her, saying love might be more correct. She was a yuri girl.
However, Lula was one of the two people that could use ancient magic. When she last saw her, her class was [Mage], but now it was [Master Mage]. It appeared that Lula didn’t neglect putting effort into her studies.
While feeling relieved by that, Ilya pat her head and Lula closed her eyes in happiness.
The boy watching the scene muttered.
“Hiii-! I was kidding! So lower that fist!”
“Selena. Surely, this time I also want to flirt with Selena~”
“Stup-, what are you saying, Eric!?”
Repeating that kind of a comedic dialogue, the trio were the mercenary guild [Stars of the Eternal Night]. Chris the swordsman, Selena the fighter, and Eric the summoner. These three were also Ilya’s acquaintances.
Ilya met them when she roamed various countries in a chain of islands to the east. During their journey they defeated devils, as well as defeating an arch devil duke. Though they weren’t even twenty years old, they had stupidly large ability. She was relieved they continued their lively journey.
“Ilya-sama. Make me your pupil-”
The young elf that crumpled forward was named York.
Though Ilya took a cold attitude towards elves, he respected her and didn’t mind it.
More than that, he glared at Lula clinging to Ilya.
“Lula, you bitch…! Don’t touch Ilya with your standing of a dark elf!”
“Umm… who are you?”
While clinging to her, Lulu looked down on York. With a cramp on his handsome face, he turned his face away from her.
“S-settle down Undine. It’s too early to make an example out of you.”
“Amazing… that spirit…”
Feeling power overflowing from the young man next to her, Selena let out a surprised voice.
Then, by Ilya’s chest, Lulu stared at York with scornful eyes while knitting her eyebrows.
“Undine… elf… ah! You’re York!? That stupid elf that contracted the great spirit of the elf fountain!”
“Watch what you say, dark elf. It would be easy for me to turn you into an icicle at any moment.”
“Hah. Before that I’d crush you flat!”
(Ah… these people just won’t grow up.)
Letting out a sigh, she tore Lula away from her body.
“You two, please stop it.”
With the place becoming quiet, Ilya turned towards Hector.
“I am sorry. It seems that the limitations were a little too severe…”
“No, it’s fine. Quality is better than quantity for this.”
Towards Hector’s words, Ilya nodded in her heart.
The mercenary guild’s master gave the stamp of approval to [Stars of the Eternal Night]’s capabilities. Deciphering ancient magic, and furthermore the best prodigy of the magic guild creating many magics, Lula. Contracting with the great spirit, Undine, whose strength was said to be like a water dragon’s, York the genius.
If it’s these members, they surpassed even an evil god to say nothing of a devil.
“Hector-sama, sorry for the inconvenience but would it be alright to stop the dispatch of knights? If you inform them of these members, there shouldn’t be any problems.”
“Ah, yeah. That is, I already stopped the knights’ dispatch.”
Soothing Ilya that had knit her brows, Frank spoke.
“Don’t be angry. There was a directive from the guild association saying the dispatch was unnecessary.”
“Ah, probably because of us.”
Chris, whose cheek had swollen, spoke up.
“We told mercenary guild O-chan to not worry since we were going.”
The guild association knew the people participating so they closed recruitment early. That’s why there were this few people.
“Huh? If that’s the case then how were Lula and them able to receive the request? Wasn’t recruitment withdrawn immediately?”
“Of course, I got the commission by using Ilya’s name.”
“I gave a strict order to the magic guild’s staff to report it to me as soon as they found a commission from Ilya-sama.”
Ilya was a little frightened by the two’s obsession.
(Though it was insurance… let’s not do that from now on.)
Feeling a danger to her body, she decided that.
At any rate, there was no problem with accomplishing the commission. Ilya showed them around inside the branch office, deciding to explain the content of the commission.
“These are the important parts. We will appraise the quality of materials you bring back, please sincerely keep that point in mind.”
“”” Oka~y “””
If they brought back something like its charred remains, she’d be troubled.
“Please don’t disturb the ecosystem… Good luck.”
Ilya saw the five off, looking towards the forest in the distance.
Spider. Rest in peace.
Praying to not be reminded of its appearance, Ilya looked rather calm.
If you were to describe the conclusion, it was a landslide victory for the five.
York sealed the spider’s movement by freezing it’s joints with a spread of Ice Rocks, while Lula destroyed its exoskeleton by dropping a meteor on it from above with Strike Nova.
Finishing it off, Chris’ Transcendent Sword Saint Strike.
Pathetically, the spider was defeated in an instant.
After that, it went without saying that Ilya received the spirited approaches from everyone as they returned. All of the five people wished to live together with Ilya.
However, she didn’t accept their wishes.
“Ilya, is it alright?”
She was asked by her colleague Ria, who saw everything from start to finish. She responded with a clear expression.
“Because I love this town, and everyone in it.”
This is good for now.
It’s up to fate to see if our paths will cross again.
Ilya determined yet again that until that time came, she would continue to take life slow and live happily.