DAR Vol. 3 Chapter 10 Part 1
Chapter 10 – A New Adventure Begins
The Adventurers’ Guild operated 24 hours a day, as it had the unique task of dealing with any magic beast-related issues. The behavior and actions of magic beasts were completely unpredictable for humans, so the Adventurers’ Guild was open even at night, in order to be able to respond no matter what happened or when.
However, daytime and nighttime operations were different. At night there was only a minimum amount of staff present and the scope of their operations was limited.
Requests without urgency were handled during the day: after checking how credible and truthful they were and if the reward was appropriate, they were normally posted on the morning of the following day.
The requests were normally all posted together at about 9 in the morning, the same time as the normal counters opened. That was the start of every morning in the Adventurers’ Guild. In the morning every guild was always packed with adventurers.
As far as requests were concerned, the early bird gets the worm: adventurers had to check contents and rewards as soon as the requests were posted, quickly consult their party and decide, or other parties would snatch them away. If adventurers wanted to take the requests with the best conditions, they had to go to the guild as early as possible.
In such a frenzied situation, a party of adventurers entered the guild. As soon as they did, the adventurers who saw them showed an expression of disgust. This party was “Nostalgia”, composed of adventurers hailing from abroad.
Nostalgia, just one month ago, had gone on a rampage in that very guild, took over the bar and seriously hurt several adventurers, so they were seen with hostility by many.
The cause had been alcohol and it was a fight among adventurers, for whom strength was everything, and Nostalgia both apologized and compensated for the damage done, so they were not prosecuted, but no one got involved with them anymore.
An adventurer saw another person following Nostalgia inside the guild and spoke up. It was a young man rather short in stature. He was already seventeen years old, so technically he was an adult, but he still looked like a boy.
Young magic wolves, one red and one blue walked at his sides, so despite his average looks, the boy attracted a fair amount of attention. Many more noticed him because of the first adventurer’s reaction, so he quickly became the center of attention.
The boy, finding the attention uncomfortable, kept walking with his eyes half-closed. His name was Roa: he was an All-Rounder who, because of a certain string of accidents that happened one month before, had gotten quite famous too.
“It’s a g…a gryphon!!!”
The sounds of screams and drawn weapons echoed. Despite being indoors, some even readied their bows or prepared to chant magic spells. Others rushed to escape, causing congestion at the exit and even more screams.
Following Roa inside the guild was a gryphon, a high-rank magic beast.
“…ehm, this is fine! It’s Roa’s servant beast!”
Nostalgia’s leader, who was leading the group, spoke loudly and clearly to the crowd.
There was some tiredness in his tone, because he had to say these words many times already on their way to the guild. The whole town was aware that there was a gryphon servant beast in it, but only few had actually seen it, so it had been commotion after commotion as the group walked from the Coralde company to the guild.
Dietrich’s voice returned silence to the guild. The adventurers probably also noticed the subjugation collar on the gryphon’s neck. They were still wary, however, and kept their weapons at the ready.
<Hehehe…I see…so this was the reason for calling me…>
The gryphon, Grandpa Gry, paid little attention to the surroundings and whispered in a voice only Roa and Nostalgia could hear, while looking at the guild’s ceiling, searching for something.
“Grandpa Gry, be quiet, okay?”
Grandpa Gry was in very good spirits, almost frighteningly so. Maybe because of the atmosphere, the magic wolf twins were very excited too. Usually they walked while sticking close to Roa, but this time they tried running off to side roads and tried going to the places they remembered seeing in the past, making it hard to control them.
No matter how powerful they were, at heart they were still children. They were adorable to watch, but also very hard to keep in check.
The adventurers opened a wide path in the direction Roa’s group was walking towards. Some had already escaped from the rear entrance, so the crowd inside the guild was decreasing little by little.
<Adventurers, pshaw! What a bunch of cowards. The grocery’s lady was braver than you all!>
Grandpa Gry looked around and snorted in disapproval. The grocery was the store where the magic wolf twins were treated with kindness, when they were still puppies. On the way to the guild, the twins spotted the owner and ran off to her, so the group was forced to make a detour, but she welcomed even Grandpa Gry with a smile and gave them dried jujube as a treat.
Because of such a fearless attitude, Grandpa Gry referred to her with respect as “lady”.
To justify the adventurers’ reaction, the commotion was all because of Roa: he did not look like he could control a gryphon in the slightest. The adventurers thus feared that the beast could go on a rampage at any time. If the gryphon was following not Roa, but Crack of Dawn, the party that used to tame it, the adventurers would keep their distance, but look at them with envy.
Despite their actual circumstances, Crack of Dawn had that much credibility.
“You are the All Rounder Roa, yes?”
Someone suddenly called to Roa. Thanks to the silence returning in the guild, the voice was heard clearly.
Roa replied and turned towards the voice, which belonged to the chief receptionist Viviana. She had come out from behind the reception counter and approached Roa’s group, but stopped about ten meters from them. She tried to go as close as possible, to fulfill her duties as a receptionist, but the fear of the gryphon probably overwhelmed her resolve.
“The guildmaster will meet you. This way, please.”
She stopped, but still managed to speak without changing her expression. Only a few droplets of sweat on her neck conveyed her nervousness.
“Only Roa, please. The others and the servant beasts shall wait here.”
The reaction came from Dietrich.
<No matter. Let them do as they please. I can feel the brat’s heartbeat anywhere as long as he’s inside the building. I will protect him, no matter what happens. Let anyone try to lay a finger on him, and they will pay!>
Dietrich was not going to sit quietly, but Grandpa Gry stopped him, so the adventurer turned suddenly quiet.
Viviana, who couldn’t hear Grandpa Gry’s voice, looked puzzled. Nostalgia was clearly there to escort Roa, so she expected them to oppose sending Roa by himself, but after an initial reaction they calmed down immediately. She found it disquieting instead.
“Grandpa Gry, be really quiet, okay?”
Roa had no idea why Grandpa Gry and Nostalgia seemed so wary. Because of that, he admonished the gryphon again.
<I will not act unless attacked, mind you! I am well known for my patience and generosity, after all. Ever since I entered, however, they are preparing to attack me. I cannot allow that!>
Worried by Grandpa Gry’s words, Roa hurriedly grabbed its neck and put his mouth next to the gryphon’s ears. The adventurers around them reacted with a mixture of fear and admiration.
“Attack you? What do you mean?”
Roa whispered faintly, so that no one else could hear.
<Using this building’s subjugation barrier, some tamer somewhere is trying to snatch away the position of my master. To use the Adventurer’s Guild barrier for personal purposes is not something an average person can do…thus they must have been ordered from the guild to do so.>
Grandpa Gry and the magic wolf twins had subjugation collars on their necks. They were fakes, however, crafted to resemble the real collars: Roa was not the master of the servant beasts through the collars’ effects. Subjugation collars or barriers did not have any effect on Grandpa Gry or the twins in the first place.
Even if they didn’t have any effect, however, Grandpa Gry would never allow anyone to forcefully steal the position of their master from Roa.
<It’s simply unpleasant…yet entertaining…! Now, how shall we cook them…?>
“I beg you…”
<No one will die. I will just play with them a little. Trust me and go do your business! That scary woman is looking at us with a scary gaze!>
Grandpa Gry’s words made Roa recall that Viviana was waiting. He looked at her and found the same expression as before, but a hint of anger in her eyes. She probably thought Roa was ignoring her to play with the servant beast.
She did not say anything simply for fear of angering the gryphon.
“I’m sorry for making you wait!!”
Roa left Grandpa Gry and lightly bowed to Viviana.
“….this way, please.”
Led by Viviana, Roa disappeared into the back of the guild. When he disappeared from sight, Grandpa Gry lay down on the spot, smack dab in the middle of the reception hall. The magic wolf twins too cuddled their bodies next to the gryphon.
<You shall now learn…! I suppose I will stop at neutralizing the subjugation barrier and lay waste to the tamer’s psyche…no, I might as well add the destruction of this building’s magic defenses and speed up its deterioration, as a bonus! And then…hehehehe….try to see how much I can do without the brat realizing…!!>
Nostalgia’s members furrowed their brows due to Grandpa Gry’s ominous mumbling, but did not have any intention to stop it. If, as Grandpa Gry had said, a tamer was trying to use the guild’s subjugation barrier to wrest control of the servant beasts away from Roa, it was definitely under orders from the guild.
Using the guild’s barrier or knowing that Grandpa Gry would be in the guild that day was only possible for Roa’s group and guild-related parties.
Dietrich threw a glance tinged with anger to the guild staff, accompanied by the grinding of his clenched teeth.