Chapter 4 Mithril Dagger
“John, do you know this girl from somewhere?”
I looked at John as he quietly sat down and skewered the hunk of meat in his hands and placed it over the fire across from us.
“It’s not very important. It was a short greeting, so I’m not surprised you wouldn’t remember me”
Looking down dejectedly, he poked at the fire, adjusting the heat under the pieces of meat that were cooking.
Could John be… a lolicon…?
Certainly, the girl beside me named Marie was indeed cute and short. But, John gives the impression that he’s a much older person. I don’t see why anyone would remember a face they’ve seen briefly almost a month ago, if they weren’t infatuated with them. On a side note, John could actually be a really young person that just likes to wear armor. I haven’t seen his face yet, so I shouldn’t judge him yet.
“Here, Mr. Tagami. These two skewers are finished cooking”
Handing over the two skewers, I took them both and handed one over Marie who was drooling as she watched.
“Ah!.... Thank you umm…… Tagami?”
Wiping away her drool, she took one of the skewers and began eating right away.
“Can I call you Marie?”
“Yesh, I don’t mind”
Marie responded back to me with her mouth full, and immediately looked away with her cheeks red in embarrassment at how she said yes.
“What are you doing around here Marie?”
Swallowing the food in her mouth this time, she looked up for a moment, and then back down.
“……I’m going to the capital to look for someone”
“I see, looking for someone huh?”
“So you’re still looking for him?”
John directed his attention away from the fire for just a moment to address her situation.
“I’m sure you’ll find him”
After John finished talking, from the corner of my eyes, I caught a glimpse of what seemed to be tears of frustration leaking from Marie’s eyes.
She quickly pulled down her hat so we couldn’t see her face.
The rest of the time we spent at the fire, it was in silence. I’m sure John and I didn’t want to say anything that could make Marie feel worse than what she already was.
“See you in the morning”
John went inside his one-person tent after finishing his meal and saying good night, leaving the two of us together. Right after he finished his meal, I volunteered for the night watch since Marie had another day of traveling on foot before getting to Serafall, and John was the wagon driver.
“What are you traveling around for, Tagami?”
Marie for some reason or another, moved a little closer and asked me in an almost incoherent tiny voice.
“eh, you may not believe it, but I’m also looking for someone”
I looked at the stars brightly shining down on us.
“Where are you from?”
“Sorry, I don’t mind telling you, but it’s a long story. It would take all night to explain. Instead, you should think about sleeping for tomorrows journey don’t you think?”
After listening to me, she took off her hat, revealing her red hair and weary face.
“I don’t mind if it’s long. I just don’t like to be by myself…”
I’ve seen a lot of fragile people in my life, and it seemed to me that she was at her breaking point. I don’t know her circumstances, but if she feels better sitting with someone like myself, then this much should be fine right?
“Then I’ll tell you about when I first got to Canute”
I wasn’t sure I could explain about being from another world to this person, but I could at least entertain them a little.
Marie simply stared at the fire as I began to recount my story of when I first arrived here.
By the time I had finished telling her about the battle against the Mimic Slime, she had already dozed off asleep. Her body was leaning against my arm in an awkward position. I quickly wrapped my arm around her so she could sleep a little more comfortably.
For the first time in a long time, I felt a little lonely.
Sitting at a campfire, and telling a story reminded me of the time when I went camping with my family and neighbors a few years ago. My childhood friend was begging me to tell her what it was like overseas in America. Before I could finish telling her about everything, she had fallen asleep just like Marie. Of course, I ended up carrying her back to her tent with her Mother and her father. Unfortunately, neither Marie or I have a tent to sleep in.
I watched as our shadows danced to the light of the campfire, reminiscing about the past.
The Morning After.
“Good-bye, Tagami, John”
“Good-bye, Miss Weldzinzaire. I hope you find him soon”
“See you around, maybe we’ll meet again”
With a brief farewell, John and I continued towards Rune Belle. Marie was headed towards Serafall. Although out meeting was short, we immediately went our separate ways.
The horse pulling the wagon walked forward at a steady pace.
“John, do you know who Marie is looking for?”
“If I recall it was someone with an odd name that started with a “T”? I don’t quite remember. It’s been a long time. Her friends never said his last name, so I don’t know much more than that”
John answered the best he could as he flicked the horses reins to speed up.
“I see. How long until we get to Rune Belle?”
“I left yesterday a little late so we’re almost half way, but we should be there by sunset”
“Alright, wake me up when we get there”
My eyes had already been slowly starting to close, I wouldn’t be able to stay awake much longer. I pulled an all-nighter after killing all those frogs, so it was understandable that my body was shutting down. Little by little, I drifted away into a deep sleep.
“UNHAND THAT GIRL!”
Huh?... What’s with the commotion?
When I opened my eyes, the wagon was stopped in the middle of road, and John was holding a large shiny broadsword twice his size, with one-hand.
“Fool! I don’t care who you are, but you can’t tell me what I can and can’t do to my own slave can you?!!”
“If you continue to beat her like that, she’ll die. It’s the same as committing murder!”
“So what if she dies?!! The fate of their lives are decided by us by contract!”
Getting up, what I saw in front of me was a bloody scene. A small girl with purple like hair and fox like ears was lying on the ground not moving. There were traces of blood on the ground all around her. Her blood stained clothes were messy and torn apart. Right in front of her, was a short and round little man with a top hat wearing a shoddy suit, and confronting that man was John who seemed ready to kill him.
“How about this? If you buy her from me, she won’t have to die. Of course it won’t be cheap”
“Name your price!”
“200 Gold coins”
“You bastard!, are you telling me you want to die here?!!”
“Are you telling me you’re willing to commit murder for the sake of a slave?”
The short round man revealed an evil looking grin.
“John, move aside”
While watching the two of them argue back and forth, I snuck up from behind and shoved John away before he did something.
Although I’m not sure how slaves are viewed in this world, it’s probably safe to assume that they’re treated as disposable garbage.
“I apologize for my friend’s actions, but could you give us a more realistic price?”
Since John was intent on saving the fox girl, I tried to bargain with the man.
“Realistic is it? Then how does 250 gold coins sound?”
Hey… how is that even remotely realistic?!! You just raised the price by fifty gold coins you know!
“I’m sorry, but is there a reason why the price is so high?”
“That little bitch dropped some important merchandise in the back! You said realistic is it?!! You’re looking at well over 300 gold if you ask me, but I’m giving you a discount for that brat lying there only because she’s already half dead!”
The round man pointed towards his wagon as he talked.
When I looked at John, he looked straight at me with eyes that said he wouldn’t leave here without that girl.
“Do you accept trades?”
“Hah! Of course I do. But from the looks of it, it seems the two of you don’t have anything that could be of any worth”
Opening my bag, I rummaged around and pulled out my destroyed mithril dagger.
“How much is this worth?”
His jaw immediately dropped open as he walked closer towards me to inspect the dagger.
From his money grubbing expression of disbelief, I could tell the dagger was still worth a lot even though it was broken.
“Alright alright, take it. In exchange, we’re taking the girl with us”
I shoved the half melted mithril dagger into the round man’s arms and walked towards the girl lying on the ground not moving.
From afar, I concentrated a significant amount of mana around the half dead fox girl.
After casting my spell, I could visibly see her wounds clear up. Although I couldn’t fully heal her, she looked much better than before.
From behind, the little man shouted and grabbed onto my jacket.
“My name is Heckman Jules the third. I’m a trader of slaves and rare goods. I apologize for my rude behavior earlier. May I have your name, young master?”
His attitude immediately did a full spin in the opposite direction! What the hell happened to that small round guy that was angry just now?!!
“My name is Tetsu Tagami, Tetsu is fine”
“Young Master, I cannot take this dagger from you, however, to celebrate our first meeting, please accept that girl as my apology.”
He presented the mithril dagger back to me with a bow.
“Uhh… Could you explain a little? I don’t really understand what you’re doing”
Taking the dagger back, I placed it into my bag.
“Does the young master not know about the origins of that dagger?”
“No, I know where it’s from, but…”
“I see, so this must be fate that we’re meeting here. That dagger represents the highest of peerage in the elven community. That symbol at the base of the dagger is unmistakable. That dagger alone grants you free entry into any city around the world. I cannot take such an item from young master, less I wish face the wrath of the elves.”
Kneeling in front of me, the round little man quickly finished his explanation.
“So that’s how it is……”
When I thought back to my first experience in Canute, it would have gone much better if I knew about the dagger wouldn’t it?!! Why didn’t that elf man tell me about it back then?!! Unless…
“Inside of that bag contains a small Mithril dagger. Etched onto it is a symbol known only to us of the elf race”
“Etched onto it is a symbol known only to us of the elf race”
“a symbol known only to us”
“a symbol known only to us”
“a symbol known only to us”
The words of the elf elder echoed continuously in my mind.
THAT’S WHAT HE MEANT?!!!!!!
“Allow me transfer ownership of that girl to you, young master”
Almost immediately before I could respond to him, he began chanting some strange words I didn’t recognize.
STOPPPPP!!!!! I DON’T EVEN WANT A SLAVE! GIVE HER TO JOHN! AND AT LEAST LET ME DIGEST ALL THIS INFORMATION FIRST!
A circle of light formed below both me and the girl lying on the ground. In just a matter of seconds, the contract was completed, and the light from underneath us faded away.
“Young Master, the transfer is complete. I hope you’ll overlook this small incident, and do business with me in the future. Farewell for now”
The little round man hastily scurried back to his wagon and headed off as I was still trying to recover from my state of shock.
“Well done Tetsu, you have my eternal gratitude”
As the sight of the small round man’s wagon disappeared into the distance, the fox girl behind us woke up.
“Where is master?.... Sniff…”
Looking around frantically, the little girl searched for her former owner.
Unable to find him, she immediately began to cry.
“What the hell just happened?”
“……Congrats on your new slave!”
John threw his hands in the air with joy as he talked.
IS THAT ALL YOU HAVE TO SAY?!! AND WHAT THE HELL IS WITH THAT UNCHARACTERISTIC RESPONSE?!!! DAMNNNNNITTTTT!