SETP Vol. 2 Chapter 7
Chapter 7 – Dvorg Tsarrich
My brother Grerial and the others planned to depart the day after tomorrow. I was now in a dingy back alley of Rinchelle’s royal capital.
The sun had risen to the zenith. Three hours had already passed since I, Fay Hanse Diestburg, had a spat with some ruffians right in this alley.
“Amazing how you can look normal after that…”
The words came from the boy assigned to watch over the store. The people I’d injured removed my “Spada” from their wounds and threw spiteful words at me. Even after they left, however, the smell wouldn’t: the surroundings still reeked.
A metal-like smell that could be easily described as the smell of death, something so powerful it would make anyone grimace in disgust. The boy, with a sour expression on his face, directed those words at me. How could I, a boy around the same age as him, stay so calmly in such a place to wait for Dvorg Tsarrich?
“I don’t hate it that much.”
I replied plainly.
“…you don’t hate it much…?”
The boy frowned and repeated my words, clearly finding them suspicious.
There was doubt in his voice, but it wasn’t about whether I was acting tough or not. His following words expressed it clearly.
“I never knew Diestburg was a bloody place like that though.”
It was unthinkable for the prince of a kingdom to be so used to the smell of blood and death, unless he had spent extensive time on the battlefield.
The boy’s words truly hit the spot, so I couldn’t help but chuckle.
But I couldn’t agree with them, naturally.
The boy’s words and line of thinking were completely correct. However, I didn’t have the slightest intention of revealing anything about my past to him.
So I just played dumb and spoke as vaguely as I could.
I glanced to my side and saw the boy was still frowning.
“There’s nothing to gain in getting used to it, really.”
Blood and death aren’t something you get used to.
They are something you should never get used to. I knew very well how someone who got used to them ended, so I despised them. That was why I could talk about them with such criticism.
“I have to apologize to you, though. But I couldn’t think of any other way to deal with people like that.”
I really felt sorry for the boy watching over the store.
He had stayed out of the dispute, though, ready to laugh vulgarly at others’ misfortune, in that case, at the violence I was about to be subjected to. When I realized that he didn’t like the smell of blood, I couldn’t help but feel that he deserved it, if just a little. I chose to keep that to myself and chuckled in my heart.
“If you can’t stand the lingering scent, you can just go back home. I’ll let Dvorg Tsarrich know.”
“…yeah, right. Going home while leaving someone dangerous like you here. I’d get fired on the spot…literally.”
I spat back, without an inch of apology in my tone.
“Are you really going to wait though?”
The boy sighed, a dejected look in his eyes.
It was all too clear that he didn’t want me around.
“I am. I have my reasons too.”
I replied immediately, making the point that I was never going to give up.
The boy understood that I would have waited as many hours as it would take, shrugged and sighed again, deeper this time.
“Listen now, the master doesn’t come here every day.”
So it might be pointless to wait, the boy implied.
It might be an excuse for the boy to get rid of a potentially dangerous element like me, but it was probably the truth.
The card given to me by the florist, an acquaintance in my kingdom, listed three addresses. If the merchant had three bases of operations, it wasn’t strange that he wouldn’t visit one of them that day.
I didn’t care though.
If I didn’t meet him that day, I would come again the day after.
If that didn’t work either, I would come the day after again.
I thought that choosing one place would be more effective than going here and there. So I didn’t have the slightest intention to move.
The boy sighed again, his deepest sigh yet.
“Why did I have to be the one watching over the store today…? What bad luck…”
I couldn’t hold back my laughter.
I thought the same thing when the ruffians came out.
I wore gorgeous clothes, since I was going to meet a merchant, and was attacked because of it. And I still couldn’t see the person I was looking for.
If that wasn’t bad luck, then what was?
But I still accepted the situation as inevitable.
“There’s all sorts of bad luck in life. Just accept that things won’t go like you want them to or you’ll just get stressed, right?”
If I was a lucky person, I wouldn’t have been separated from my mentor and the others, and would still be enjoying my lazy lifestyle right now.
However, reality was different.
“But that’s how life is. That’s life…yeah.”
Because of my ever-present pessimism, I could say that.
Bad luck was not always something bad.
After all, some things can be obtained through bad luck. I knew that I had found many irreplaceable things through strokes of bad luck.
“…besides, if you were lucky all the time the world would be pretty boring, I think.”
If I was lucky, I would have never been born in a hell on earth like my previous world.
A world where enjoying all sorts of happiness was an obvious, everyday reality. That’s the place I would have probably been born in.
In that case, I would have never met my mentor or the others. I would have never felt the pain and sadness of losing others. But I would have also never felt the connection with people so important to me, all replaced by “obvious, everyday happiness”.
That was why I didn’t see bad luck as something to be sad about.
“I’m fine with being bored, as long as I can be happy.”
“Well, to each their own, I guess.”
At the very least, I knew that bad luck did not always lead to something negative, so I kept such a way of thinking.
“But, you know𑁋”
My words stopped then.
The sound of footsteps resounded in the deserted alley, followed by the sounds of soles sliding against the ground.
“Looks like I was a bit lucky today.”
I lifted an eyebrow, happily surprised. The boy, on the contrary, twisted his expression into shock.
“Why did you have to come today of all days, master…?”
Surrounded by men, probably bodyguards, a *woman* was approaching.
She was probably around 30 years old.
She was staring fixedly at the boy, smiling.
The boy, however, was shaking visibly, his teeth chattering. To put it simply, he was scared out of his mind.
“Boy, I recall ordering you not to let anyone come here, have I not?”
A clear, transparent voice.
A beautiful voice, I found myself thinking.
“Yes, yes, that’s right, but…”
“And it reeks of blood too. What in the world did you do here? What was the point of you watching over the store?”
“M-master, that is…”
While the boy was being interrogated, I stood up and approached them, careful about the bodyguards’ reaction.
I walked one step, two steps, deliberately slowly, in order to reveal my presence.
About five meters from the boy and the woman he called “master”, I stopped.
“Are you Dvorg Tsarrich, the merchant?”
“Dvorg” was without a doubt a masculine name.
I knew it wasn’t the best question to ask directly, but as the boy called the woman “master”, I assumed she was Dvorg, so I mentioned the name in my question.
“Yes, I am. Do you have business with me?”
The woman stopped interrogating the boy and turned towards me.
She shot a sharp glare in my direction, but I let it pass through without resistance.
“I came here on Warrick’s introduction.”
The woman seemed to remember the name. She whispered it to herself, looking conflicted. I did not know what kind of relationship they had, but it was clearly not something superficial.
“I have a request for you.”
I did not have a lot of time to spare.
So I skipped any formalities and went straight to the point.
“I wish to talk. Can you give me some of your time?”