「I see the city of Abuero!」
Except for a break during lunch, they kept walking along the highway. And as the sun was about to set, they heard a voice from the first carriage.
「Alright! We managed to get here without being attacked by monsters!」
「……The trip on the way to Gilm and the trip back……honestly, the difference was disappointing.」
「Yeah. Rei and Set. Especially Set. As Rei said, ordinary monsters won’t try to attack a Griffon.」
「That’s right. However, aside from monsters, bandits would attack without realising. There are a lot of bandits between Abuero to Sabrusta.」
「Ah, that’s true. We were attacked several times when we passed by here last time. It’s winter right now, they’ll probably be more in spring.」
「Don’t worry about it. This is probably the first and last time our merchant caravan will come to the frontier. You won’t have to worry about bandits after spring.」
「That’s true. Well, we’ll stay overnight in Abuero. I’ll eat good food, drink wine and maybe head to a brothel to raise my spirits for tomorrow?」
「Hey, don’t be late for the departure. If I recall correctly, something like this happened before and Alektor was angry with you wasn’t he?」
Maybe they were relieved to see the city. In the carriage, the merchants talked cheerfully to each other.
「Have you been to Abuero, Rei?」
Unexpectedly, one of the merchants called out to Rei from the carriage.
Because Abuero was a city near to Gilm, it was natural to ask that, but Rei shook his head.
「No, I’ve never been there before.」
Rei had only passed over the city with Set when he was on his way to Baar.
「I see, I wanted to ask if you knew any good restaurants……it can’t be helped.」
During the conversation, the merchant caravan continued its way forward until it arrived at the main gate to Abuero.
「Oh, you guys passed through here last time……I feel the number of carriages seem to have dropped though.」
「We were attacked by monsters. A carriage, the merchants inside and the escorting adventurers……」
「……I see. Sorry for asking about that. Rather, your ID please.」
「Here it is.」
Alektor talked with the guards as he handed over his documents. At the same time, Rei and the adventurers from Beautiful Raindrop also handed their guild cards to the other guards……
One of the guards who saw Set fell into a panic as he screamed.
Even if they didn’t intend it, the guards around him immediately sharpened up and readied their weapons when they heard the cry. Their expressions were different from those who were fearing death or in despair, but seeing a Griffon, none of them seemed optimistic.
For Set, who was used to interacting with people in Gilm, he couldn’t understand why the guards were afraid of him. What’s wrong? He seemed to ask as he looked around with his head tilted.
Fortunately at this time, the guards were still self aware. Even though he was used to people, if the guards had attacked Set, he would still fight back. If that happened, there was no doubt that things would have gotten very bad in various ways.
「Wait a moment! This Griffon is his tamed monster! There’s no danger!」
Alektor shouted desperately as his big belly shook.
The guards who heard his shout and turned their eyes to Set, and Rei who was standing next him, as if confirm the truth of Alektor’s story.
「……Is that really true?」
「Ahh. Set……this Griffon is my tamed monster, it’s true.」
When Rei replied to the guard’s question, a stir immediately spread.
「Hey, you must be lying. You taming a Griffon.」
「Moreover, you’re just a kid……I can’t see you too well under the hood of your robe, but you’re just a kid aren’t you? You’re small and have a delicate build.」
「No, not a kid, a girl?」
「His voice was definitely a guy’s.」
「But, to tame a Griffon……」
「……Ah. Speaking of which, I’ve heard that there’s an adventurer in Gilm that has a Griffon.」
「Come to think of it, there were some parties in the area that I heard from……」
「Ahh, I remember hearing about that.」
Rei, who was listening to the guards, spoke as he stroked Set’s head.
「So, what’s going to happen now?」
「……I’m sorry, but to confirm just in case, show us your guild card.」
One of the guards stepped forward as he called out to Rei. Seeing the other guards watch him with trust, he was probably the captain or leader.
「Is it okay?」
Rei handed over his guild card without showing any opposition. Looking carefully over the card, the guard eventually returned it to Rei with a small nod.
「I’ve checked it. City of Gilm, Rei, rank C adventurer. There’s nothing suspicious with the guild card.」
Murmurs. Once the words ‘Rank C’ were mentioned, the other guards began to stir again.
「Hey, are you sure? Rank C at that age!?」
「Wow, is the city of Gilm really that peaceful?」
「No, no. He’s followed by a Griffon right? In that case, isn’t strange that he isn’t a higher rank?」
「Ah, I see. In other words, that Rei isn’t really that strong himself? If you think of him as a monster tamer, that’s true I guess?」
The guards continued to talk in whispers as they looked at Rei’s face, who had taken off his hood for identification.
However, with Rei’s sharp senses, he could hear it all. Nevertheless, he didn’t say anything because there was no need to cause anymore fuss.
「But……I’m sorry. As the person in charge of this place, I can’t let you into the city.」
「Hey, isn’t that unfair? That’s harsh, they haven’t even done anything wrong.」
Among the merchants, who were watching the course of the conversation, Louise, who was very attached to Set, made a protest to the guard.
However, the way she dragged out her words and because she was also angry, she looked like an angry child pouting.
「……I’m sorry, but this is my judgement as a guard. So you’ll have to follow it.」
「Hey, Louise! You have to stop it!」
Louise tried to say something more, but her mouth was covered by Taenia’s hand, which suddenly stretched out from behind her.
「Okay? I also find what he said to be unreasonable. But, if a Griffon entered the city, won’t an ordinary town panic? The commotion might cause the knights to come out. That’s why I’m sorry, but please keep quiet here.」
「But. I thought I would be able to relax and take my time playing with Set.」
Set moved forward a step and gave a cry to tell them not to worry. The leader of the guards stopped breathing for a moment when he saw Set glance over……but he couldn’t step back.
Set turned to look at Rei and gave a small cry. Rei understood what he wanted to say and spoke up.
「Set says he’s going to spend the night outside tonight. I will also……」
I’ll stay outside as well. Rei was going to say that, but was stopped by Set. Set’s act of rubbing his head against Rei while giving a cry told Rei to have a good rest without worrying about him.
「……I understand. Set will stay outside, I’ll head inside.」
Hearing Rei’s answer, Set seemed to be satisfied and started heading away from the city of Abuero right after.
The person in charge bowed toward Rei as he watched Set head off.
Even in this case, he didn’t want to have make the decision. After all, there were also a few monster tamers in Abuero. However, most of the monsters that followed them were rank D at most.
Although it might have been a tamed monster, it was still a rank A monster. After working for such a long time as a guard, he could imagine the reaction of someone who hadn’t seen one before and what trouble it could easily cause even after putting on a Necklace of Subservient Monster. No, rather, it could be said that Gilm, which accepted Set rather readily, was not a normal place. Or it could be because it was on the frontier that they accepted it.
Rei understood that and shook his head at the guard standing in front of him.
「Don’t worry about it. Set and I understand.」
Seeing Rei’s understanding of Set’s treatment, Alektor, who had been closely watching from nearby, breathed a sigh of relief.
After all, he had hired an adventurer with the ability equal to A rank for the cheap fee of disposable spears and food. That was why he was worried that before he crossed the Abuero to Sabrusta highway, which had a lot of bandits, Rei would quit the request there. However, considering the events during lunch time, the cost of food was much higher than he had expected.
Despite the fact that Rei’s strength had reached that level, the fact that he still looked only 15 was part of the reason events had turned out as such.
「Well then, let’s head into the city. The hotel I stayed in last time served delicious food. Let’s restore our energy to prepare for tomorrow.」
(And, I have to hurry to buy some edible meat for Set……it should be as cheap as possible and as much as possible.)
Alektor pulled Rei into the city in case Rei decided to change his mind. Then, as if following him, the two carriages and Beautiful Raindrop entered Abuero.
They walked for 20 minutes after entering through the main gate of Abuero. There was an inn where Alektor had stayed at before. The sign outside showed two swords with crossed blades.
「Well then, let’s go in. The Crossed Swords Pavilion is well known to merchants. Oh, Clerona, I’ll leave the carriage to you.」
「Sure, Alektor-san. In return, I’ll have more food.」
With a wry smile at the at the merchant’s request, Alektor entered the inn with the other merchants, Beautiful Raindrop and Rei.
The group was greeted by a middle-aged man who was just as wide as Alektor. However, if there was any difference between them, Alektor wasn’t really overweight, but the man who welcomed them at the counter had muscles all over his body.
「Welcome. Oh you guys are……」
「Hey, owner. Thanks for this time as well. As you can see, this is how many people we have, do you have the room?」
「Ahh, that’s not an issue at this time because there are few customers. …That said, the number of people in your group has decreased.」
Alektor shook his head without saying anything in reply. And as a store manager who managed an inn in Abuero, which could be said to border the frontier, it was not hard for him to understand what had happened.
「I see. Wait for me to get the rooms ready right away. The price is the same as before.」
Alektor nodded and completed the inn procedures.
「Well, everyone. We’ll take a break for today. I want you to keep your spirits up for tomorrow.」
Alektor’s voice echoed through the dining area attached to the inn.
The inn itself might have a small number of guests, but dining area attached to it was rather large, probably due to the delicious meals served, as Alektor had said. In such a way, the party, which had been on the road for the whole day, drank alcohol and ate the delicious food to fill their hunger.
「No, Rei-san. I’m sorry. I wanted to Set to be inside the city if I could.」
Alektor called out to Rei, who was digging into a steamed chicken like monster as he dipped it into a dish of sour sauce before eating it. Alektor had a glass of wine in his hand and his cheeks were already flushed, showing that it wasn’t his first glass.
「Don’t worry, Set wants to relax outside sometimes. I think he will just hunt any monsters he finds and eat them.」
「I’m quite grateful now that you say that. After all, I said I would prepare Set’s meals, but with how things are.」
They continued the conversation like that for a few more minutes before Rei suddenly asked about what he had been interested in.
「Speaking of which, what did you purchase in addition to what you originally went to Gilm for? I heard that one of the carriages was enough to make up for the loss for the rest to some extent. At this time of year, there isn’t that much monster material is there?」
After all, adventurer usually closed up for winter. And when that happened, there would naturally be fewer monster materials and magic stones.
In response to Rei’s question, Alektor spoke up softly with a smile on his mouth so that the surroundings couldn’t hear him.
「Actually, surprisingly……I succeeded in getting some Flame Crystals.」
Rei was surprised at the unexpected words.
However, Alektor continued to speak as if he didn’t notice, maybe because he was drunk.
「Yes. Have you heard of it? It’s an ore created by trapping fire magic power into crystals. In addition, the magic power contained in the crystals is quite large and pure, it’s a fine Flame Crystal.」
「Even so, I didn’t expect Flame Crystal to be mined near Gilm. This ore is an alchemic material and a catalyst for making magic items. They can also be used in weapons to make swords, they’re used as part of weapons with fire properties, they’re very versitile ores.」
Rei responded the same way he did a few seconds ago.
After all, Rei was familiar with the Flame Crystal. It was probably the result of Rei’s own fire magic that he had used in the Harpy’s nest. Because of that, he couldn’t ask anymore about it and had no choice but to reply to Alektor’s words vaguely.
While Rei had cold sweat as he conversed with Alektor in the dining area, Set was running through the forest near Abuero after finding an Orc that was also looking for prey and eating it to fill his stomach.