The day after his first meeting with Kuust at the lord’s residence, as promised, Rei headed for the main gate before the 9 am bell.
Of course, Set was with him.
Though adventurers and city residents approached them as usual along the main street, because they were meeting the Duke’s daughter today, he gave short greetings instead of the usual conversations as he headed for the main gate.
「Oh, Rei-kun. Do you by any chance know who those people are waiting for over there? 」
As he handed over his guild card and the Necklace of Subservient Monster as usual, Ranga asked him.
While asking that, Ranga turned his eyes to the people he were referring to. The lord of the city of Gilm, Daska Rowlocks, was there. Kuust, the commander of Elena’s escort, could also be seen there. Naturally, they weren’t the only people. About 10 guards were also next to them. Daska had put on luxurious clothes, suitable for a lord. Though what Kuust wore were also luxury goods, it was inferior to what he had worn the day before.
After all, the armour that Kuust had worn the day before had been destroyed by Rei’s Death Scythe. The armour that Kuust was wearing now was probably one that had been hurriedly prepared.
(Still, should I say as expected of his financial power to procure an armour of that level.)
Though it certainly might look inferior on the outside to the one that was destroyed yesterday, as it attracted Rei’s eyes, it was probably a magic item.
He nodded at Ranga’s question as he took his guild card back.
「That’s not wrong.」
「I thought so. However, it’s probably better to not carelessly say things to Kuust. He seems to have a lot of pride.」
Being advised like that, he guessed that Kuust probably caused some sort of commotion at the main gate earlier.
……However, the advice had come too late for Rei, who had literally beat Kuust up the day before.
「That’s a bit late.」
「Ah, why is that?」
「Ahh. Something happened yesterday.」
Saying that after receiving his guild card back, he went out the front gate towards Daska and Kuust with Set.
When everyone near Daska saw Set, they reflexively readied the swords and spears in their hands. It was the same for Kuust, he quickly readied the magic spear in his hands.
「Stop it! ……My bad Rei. These people are my guards.」
Daska ordered the surrounding people while calling out to Rei with a wry smile.
「No, it’s my fault for approaching without calling out.」
What’s wrong? Set seemed to ask as he tilted his head to the side. Rei stroked his head while telling him it was nothing.
Set gave a happy cry from his throat.
「Hmm, it’s pretty tame. It’s just as I heard from the stories.」
Daska muttered with an impressed voice as he gave a glance at the man next to him.
Looking over there, there was a man in his middle ages. He gave off the feeling of having forged both his muscles and mind. Though Rei didn’t know, the man was called Torenma and served as the deputy commander of the knights that protected the city of Gilm.
Torenma understood his lord’s, Daska’s, glance and spoke up to Rei.
「Rei-dono, that is, I’m a bit interested in your monster. If your Griffon is okay with it……Set, was it, may I touch it?」
(……I see, does he want to confirm if Set will really obey me? Although lord Daska wanted to test it himself, did he ask his subordinate to do it because it is difficult because of his position?)
Rei was roughly able to understand the exchange in looks with Torenma and nodded.
「Ahh, no problem. There’s no problem if you stroke him normally. ……If you stroke him normally that is. However, remember that Griffons dislike humans trying to do bad things to them.」
To Rei’s hinting words, Daska understood Rei’s aim and glanced at Torenma again.
Torenma received the glance and merely stroked Set’s back as Rei had said.
「Hou~, so this is your prided Griffon. I see, It certainly is a stunning Griffon.」
Kuust interjected as soon as Torenma went away. Though his words were praising, he still had a condescending look in his eyes towards Rei.
In response, Set gave a grumpy cry.
「Unfortunately, it seems Set doesn’t favour you.」
「You, what did you say? You, a commoner talking back to people……」
「Kuust-dono, let’s leave it at that. Rei as well. Both of you will be working temporarily with each other starting tomorrow to challenge the dungeon. What will you be doing there if you’re quarreling already.」
Though Kuust tried to ready his magic spear against Rei because of his attitude, he reluctantly let it go at Daska’s words.
At the same time, Rei held Set back, who was ready to attack at any moment.
Though Set gave a cry of discontent, held back by Rei, he could only swallow is discontent.
……However, he still continued to glare at Kuust.
Kuust, who looked Set in the eye, froze his movements for an instant.
Noticing that, he clicked his tongue and muttered in his mind so as to not be heard.
(Did I felt fear for a moment even though it’s a tamed monster? A Griffon is an A rank monster, so unpleasant. And that guy called Rei doesn’t know how to act courteously to nobles as a commoner……to have to bring such a lowly person near Elena-sama……such an unpleasant person.)
While looking at Kuust, Rei muttered in his mind.
(Goblin Drool, Dark Night’s Star, Arogan, I seem to be destined to meet these kinds of people. Well, it turned out better in the end with Arogan.)
What are you doing? Set seemed to ask as he rubbed his head against Rei. Rei stroked his head and told him it was nothing.
Though he originally planned to give Set some of the dried meat he had stored into the Misty Ring, because he was waiting for the General Princess with the lord of the city, he couldn’t do such an impolite thing. Instead, he stroked Set’s head to soothe him.
Daska discussed some work related matters with his subordinates while Kuust stared at the end of the highway, as if silently praying.
The situation stayed like this for about 30 minutes. Then, at the far end of the highway, a carriage gradually came into view.
Kuust’s condescending look that he had against Rei disappeared and was replaced with a joyful face. Likewise, as the person in charge of the territory, Margrave Daska Rowlocks gave a sigh of relief.
After all, he was responsible for the territory. If an incident happened here, it would be Daska’s responsibility. It would become a faction conflict if an important figure of a rival faction was attacked by thieves or monsters and was injured or died. It was no wonder that the person responsible and his subordinates were relieved at their safe arrival.
(Well, if she has the nickname General Princess, I don’t think defeating the monsters along the highway would be a problem for her.)
Daska thought in his mind.
General Princess, the proud nickname of military renown had even spread to neighbouring countries.
Rei involuntarily let out a sigh in admiration when he was finally able to confirm the small carriage drawn by two warhorses.
「Uwa~, that’s a very splendid carriage.」
At those words, Kuust frowned his eyes slightly for a moment. His eyes showed admiration towards Rei for an instant. ……Of course, his eyes immediately returned the condescending look had before.
「Hou~, so you noticed. As expected of you.」
Daska spoke to Rei in admiration.
Though he was a feudal lord now, he was originally a soldier in the battlefield. Therefore, when the magic item carriage approached, he was able to feel the large magic power from it.
As for Rei, he realised it was a magic item because it attracted his eyes, the same way as when he saw other magic items.
「Lord-sama, what do you mean?」
However, the aides who served the lord were basically civil servants and had no knowledge regarding magic items. Because the people who noticed that the carriage was a magic item were few, one of them asked Daska, his superior.
「Though you might not understand, the carriage itself is a considerably powerful magic item.」
「Really? Though I can use a bit of magic, I wouldn’t think that the carriage would be a magic item at all.」
「I know right. A effect of concealment has been given to the carriage. ……Isn’t that right Rei?」
The same as your robe, Daska seemed to hint.
(……Did he notice? As expected of him.)
Rei had a look of astonishment because he didn’t think that the effect of concealment granted by Esta Nord, one of the best alchemists, would be seen through.
Though Kuust turned his eyes to Rei for an instant at Daska’s words, he didn’t have the time to say anything as the carriage had nearly arrived where they were.
As the carriage stopped in front of Rei, Daska and Kuust, the man in the drivers seat jumped down skillfully.
The man waved his hand lightly at Kuust as he knocked on the door of the carriage. Similar to his build, he seemed to have a mild personality.
Seeing the childish wry smile on the face of the man, it was easy for Rei to understand that he was one of Kuust’s acquaintances.
(And his body movements……it’s somewhat like Culotte’s thief movements. In that case, is he the man that has the role of the thief for the General Princess?)
「Elena-sama, we’ve arrived at the city of Gilm.」
「Umu~, thanks for your work.」
A voice was heard from inside and the door of the carriage opened. A person came out at the same time. The moment the appearance of the person could be seen, amazement spread from Daska’s subordinates to the people further away, who were looking to see what was happening around the carriage.
Her golden blonde hair reflected the sunlight and her looks were the most beautiful the people around here had ever seen. Though normally, someone like that would be described as a doll, her sharp eyes displaying strength of will and mind proved that she was a living human. Furthermore, even though they were covered by her armour, it could not hide her sensual rich twin hills. In addition, when she got off the carriage and onto the ground, there wasn’t a noticeable difference between her eye level and the eye level of the men in the surrounding area. In simple terms, she was considerably tall for a girl.
The men around her……no, the women as well, first looked at her beauty. Then at her rich twin hills. Then finally at her tall stature.
As she was probably accustomed to drawing looks from everyone around her, she looked at the surroundings without minding it in particular……among the people around the carriage she not only looked at their faces and build but the weapons and armour they had equipped as well. Aside from that, she also looked at the cloaks, shoes and other equipment they wore.
What attracted her interest was that that guy, Rei, was wearing the same Shoe’s of Sleipnir that she was wearing. He was also wearing a robe which was a considerably high quality magic item. But more than anything else……
(That person, is he really a human? It’s as if an overwhelming amount of magic power took the form of a man. The fact that there’s someone like this, as expected of the frontier.)
Noticing the magic power Rei possessed, she felt admiration in her mind. Magic taking human form, her thinking was coincidentally the same thought as what Firuma, the elf, thought of Rei.
Then, Rei moved his eyes from the magic items Elena was equipped with to her face.
Similarly, Elena moved her eyes across the magic items Rei had equipped and to his face.
It was really by chance. Rei happened to look at Elena and Elena glanced at Rei at the same time……their two glances met.
Nothing happened. The fact was that only their looks intersected each other.
However, the moment Rei looked at Elena, he unintentionally gave a look of astonishment while Elena reflexively drew in a breath.
From the point of view of the surrounding people, it was only a few seconds. But for the two people looking at each other, it felt like an hour. In that one instant, they both had a strange feeling about the other.