TWEM Vol. 1 Chapter 13

Chapter 13 – Arrival in the Royal Capital!

After passing the inspection to enter the capital, we explained that we crushed the Ebony Wolves, caught their leader, and left the other members tied up in a specific place: we were promptly showered with gratitude.

“You not only located the Ebony Wolves’ hideout, but you even defeated their leader…thank you so much!! We will contact you about the reward through the adventurers’ guild after we have secured the other thieves, so please look for it at the guild reception. Lastly, I apologize for the inconvenience, but could you wait here for a while?”

We nodded in agreement and entrusted the leader of the thieves to the guards.

Five minutes after the guards brought the leader to what seemed to their station post, they came back — followed by about 20 soldiers. There were also three horse carriages, which the soldiers were probably going to board to go pick up the other Ebony Wolves.

“Sorry for the wait. We’re going to secure the other thieves and confirm the location of the hideout, so could you mark them on this map?”

“Yes, of course.”

I looked at the simple map I was given and used God Eye to mark the exact locations.

“Impressive how you can tell the location in such detail…thank you very much for your cooperation.”

“No, it’s nothing.”

So I replied to the guard who bowed his head deeply. After watching the troops leave, we entered the town.

The escort mission was thus complete, so Youte and the other merchants went on their way,

Finne, Ryan’s party, and I asked the local townspeople about the location of the adventurers’ guild and headed towards it.

As you would expect from a kingdom’s royal capital, the city was hustling and bustling everywhere.

The streets were dotted with stalls, selling all sorts of delicious-looking food.

We walked for a while, stopping every now and then to buy from the food stalls when we heard someone screaming.

The cause of which became clear in mere seconds.

— a fully nude man, with his whole body tied by thin ropes.

“Hahaha!! To feel the eyes of the populace on my naked tied body…there truly is no greater joy…! How could I ever stop…!?”

I was standing there, shocked and confused by the man’s words, when the city security patrol, alerted by the commotion, shouted at the man.

“You again, filthy deviant!! Wear something, for heaven’s sake!!”

“Hngh!? They found me again! Time to retreat!! By the way, I prefer being naked!!”

“Where do you think you’re going!? Stop!!”

After quickly unraveling the ropes tying him, the naked man ran off, actually somehow making the effort look gallant.

We thus watched the naked man and the security guards chasing him pass by us, shouting and clamoring.

“…let’s go.”

“…yes, let’s.”

“…right.”

“…yeah.”

“…yes.”

“…sure.”

All six of us reacted in a sort of conflicted manner, then resumed walking in direction of the adventurers’ guild.

~

“We’re finally here…it’s really huge, though.”

The guild building was a really massive one.

I thought the Vaana guild was pretty large too, but this building was a whole nother level.

Impressed, I opened the door and looked inside: just like in Vaana, the guild housed a tavern inside.

I felt we attracted attention for a second, but everyone quickly returned to their tables and conversations.

Oh, there’s no classic “annoy the newcomers” event here? There’s a cute girl like Finne in our party this time, so I was sure something was going to happen…maybe this guild is a peaceful one?

So I thought to myself as I looked around the hall, eventually spotting a sort of familiar figure: a group of men sporting mohawks, leather pants, and spiked shoulder pads.

“Hyahahaha!! Another day, another big catch!!”

“I betcha they won’t be stepping on our turf anytime soon!!”

“Hyahahahaha!!!”

…that one group is straight out of a post-apocalyptic scenario, isn’t it? This is an adventurers’ guild, right?

While keeping slightly alert with regard to that group, we headed towards the reception counter, handed in our adventurer cards, and reported about the completed request.

“…yes, request confirmed. This is your reward. Thank you for your efforts.”

After taking the money, I turned towards Ryan and the others and asked them a question.

“Where are you guys going to stay?”

“We haven’t decided, I was thinking of going to look for a place now.”

“It’s my first time too in this city, so…”

So replied Ryan and Finne. Ryan’s party probably always let him decide, as they just nodded at his words.

I turned again towards the receptionist and asked her about a place to stay.

“Excuse me, is there an inn you’d recommend around here?”

“In that case, you should try the ‘New Moon Inn’. Head straight right from the guild, then take the first turn left.”

“Thanks.”

“It’s nothing, I get the question often.”

We thanked the pleasantly smiling receptionist and decided to go to the inn straight away.

The directions were easy to follow, so we reached our destination without trouble: a large board with the words “New Moon Inn” hung in front of the building.

We stepped inside, and a young girl, probably in her early teens, came out.

“Welcome to the New Moon Inn. My name is Sophia, I am the inn proprietress…will you be staying with us today?”

“Yes, we need rooms for the six of us.”

There were enough rooms available: Ryan and Anita, Nathan, and Iraly each took a double room, while Finne and I took single rooms.

It was almost time for dinner, so after receiving an explanation about the inn’s systems, we put our luggage down in our rooms and gathered in the dining hall.

We would probably all have different plans the following day, so it was likely to be the last dinner all six of us shared together.

After the pleasant dinner, we split up and I headed to my single room to relax.

I was just lying there, staring off into space, for a while, when I heard a knock on the door.

“…who is it?”

“It’s me, Finne. There is something I wish to talk about.”

I had no idea what it could be, but I also had no reason to refuse, so I told her to come in.

Finne stepped inside and bowed her head to me.

“Sir Haruto, I wanted to thank you for all your help until now…if that is alright with you, would you form a party with me?”

Finne’s words made me think for a moment.

Having companions wasn’t a problem in itself, but I wanted to know the reason behind such a sudden request.

“That’s pretty sudden. I’m not against forming a party, but do you have a specific reason?”

So I asked, and Finne raised her head and started speaking gravely.

“…Yes. I would need to explain certain personal circumstances first…actually, I have no family. My parents abandoned me when I was very little, so I was raised in an orphanage. I always dreamed of becoming an adventurer, so I studied how to use a sword and magic while in the orphanage.”

Finne paused for a moment, then continued.

“When I became of age and left the orphanage, I could achieve my dream and become an adventurer. I have been raising my rank ever since, to repay my debts gratitude to those who helped me, but I started feeling worried about how long someone as weak as me could continue adventuring…that was when I met you, Mr. Haruto, in that square in Vaana. You saved me then, and in this mission, I witnessed your strength…sir Haruto, would you please form a party with me and train me?”

After her earnest request, Finne bowed deeply again.

Hmm…she called herself weak, but Finne was rank C already, so she had to be considerably strong.

She probably wanted me to train her to rise even further.

Training her wasn’t a problem, but I planned to travel the world, so she’d have to come with me on my travels.

I reached a conclusion and answered Finne, looking at her in the eyes.

“I am currently traveling around the world. If you want me to train you, you’d have to join me in my travels…is that fine with you?”

Finne listened intently and replied with a serious tone.

“Yes. I wish to be stronger. Besides, if I could travel with sir Haruto, I…”

I didn’t catch the end of her sentence, but if she was okay with traveling together, then it was decided.

“Got it. We should go to the guild and file a party registration tomorrow.”

“Yes! Thank you very much!”

Finne’s bright smile took me by surprise and made my heart race a bit.

~

The following morning, after breakfast, we headed towards the adventurers’ guild.

According to Sophia, Ryan and the others had already left the inn.

We arrived at the adventurers’ guild: once inside, I noticed someone I had seen the day before.

“I got naked and tied up on the central street, with everyone looking at me! It felt so good!!”

It was the full nude man.

“I’d expect nothing less of you! Very well, I shall do it today!!”

“Oooooohh!!!”

The people around him sure are noisy…better steer clear of them so we don’t get dragged in.

Finne and I pretended not to see them and headed straight for the counter.

I noticed two men sitting at a nearby table who glanced at us and started whispering.

“Look, it’s the one from yesterday. Pretty sweet body, huh…”

I picked up such words and felt I needed to be on my guard: were they trying to target Finne?

The words that followed, however, had me frozen dead in my tracks.

“Look at those muscles, that aura…that guy just screams pure power! I want to fight him!! Fight him now!!”

“You think so, right!? Me too!!”

Your target was me!?

I felt chills running down my spine, but did my best to ignore them and walked up to the counter.

We told the receptionist about wanting to form as a party, and the registration process was over in a flash.

“…there you go. The reward for routing the band of thieves was also decided, so we deposited it into your respective accounts.”

Ooh, that was pretty quick.

“Thank you.”

We thanked the receptionist and left the guild. Finne said there was a place she wanted to go to, so we split for the moment.

Finne bowed to me, wore her hood, and walked away.

I noticed that every time she was on her own, Finne always wore her hood. I guessed she didn’t want to stand out.

I was on my own for the first time after reaching the capital, so I walked around aimlessly, looking for anything interesting.

I was walking down a certain street when I spotted a well-dressed young girl being harassed by three men, probably adventurers.

The young girl was clearly scared, but despite the fact that there were lots of people coming and going, they all just looked on the commotion from a distance, no one making an attempt to help her.

The basket the young girl probably carried was knocked down on the ground, scattering fruits all around.

…I feel like I saw a very similar situation recently…

Feeling annoyed, I asked a nearby passerby what happened.

“What’s going on over there?”

“The little girl was doing some shopping when the adventurers started harassing her…they’re rank C, so no one can help her…”

“I see, thanks.”

Getting involved was likely to mean getting hurt, so no one could give her a hand, apparently.

I could defeat them without trouble, though, so I walked up to them.

“What’s your deal, guy?”

One of the adventurers addressed me like that, but I ignored him and picked up the fruits for the girl.

“Are you okay? You know that you have to pick them quickly or they’ll get spoiled, right?”

“Eh? Ah, thank you very much.”

After picking up the fruit, I glanced at the adventurers, then talked to the girl again.

“It’s dangerous here, should I accompany you home? Honestly, I feel ashamed to be an adventurer like these people.”

So I said to the girl while smiling. My attitude and words clearly irritated the adventurers: the one who called to me before started yelling.

“What the hell did you say!? You’re dead, boy!!”

I shot a glare of Intimidation at the adventurer threatening me, grunting “What?” in a low voice.

The adventurers moved one step backwards, then turned on their heels and ran away, shrieking pathetically.

The girl witnessed the sudden development with a look of utter disbelief on her face. Eventually, she shook it off and frantically bowed her head to me.

“Th-thank you very much for helping me! My name is Asha. Let me repay this debt of gratitude one day.”

“I didn’t do anything special, so no need to repay anything. Rather than that, should I take you home?”

“No, it’s alright…I will come visit you with my master in the near future, see you then.”

“Master? What do you mean, Asha— ”

Before I could finish my sentence, the young girl called Asha ran away.

Unable to wrap my mind around what happened, I stood there, dumbfounded for a while.

~

I resumed my tour of the town while reflecting on what Asha’s words could have meant.

I will come visit you with my master…what did that actually mean? She was dressed nicely, so her master could have been a noble or something, but…

I was walking while considering such thoughts when a shop selling tools I had never seen before caught my eye.

I think I saw some of these goods before, though…

“What is this thing?”

I took one of the tools in my hands and showed it to the shop owner, who looked at me with shock.

“Thing? You’ve never seen a magic tool before?”

“Magic tool…?”

Guessing from the name, it was a tool that let you use magic…?

“You really don’t know…?”

“I was raised in the countryside, so…could you tell me what they do?”

The shop owner, a fairly old woman, nodded and started explaining.

Apparently, magic tools where items inscribed with magic spells: pouring magic power in them activated the spell, which caused the item to move or had other effects. They had about five hundred years of history.

“I see, very interesting. Thank you for the explanation.”

“No problem, how about buying one?”

“I apologize to say this after you kindly explained about them to me, but I think I’ll come again another day.”

I nodded to the old woman in apology and left the store.

As I walked away, I thought that it might be interesting to create magic tools on my own one day.

<<Skill “Magic Engineering” acquired. Skill level reached 10. Skill added to Magic Unification.>> 

…yep, I knew it.

As the robotic voice spoke, the knowledge needed to craft magic tools poured in my head.

The techniques involved are pretty detailed…if I didn’t have Parallel Thought and Accelerated Thought, I couldn’t have taken it all at once, I bet.

The knowledge also included necessary materials, so I might as well gather some when I have the time.

~

I had covered more or less half of the royal capital in my walk when the sun started setting, so I decided to go back to the inn.

“Oh, sir Haruto, you’re back now too?”

“Yeah, you too?”

Finne and I chuckled at each other, then I opened the door for her to go first.

It was almost time for dinner, so we sat down at a table and I told her about my encounter with Asha.

Incidentally, Ryan and the others hadn’t come back yet, apparently.

“ —and that’s what happened. By the way Finne, what were you doing today?”

“I see…I heard about a shop that sells accessories you can only find here, so I went to buy some.”

Finne then showed me a necklace decorated with small gemstones.

“It’s very pretty.”

So I replied while looking at the gems, then Finne beamed and said, “It is, isn’t it!!”.

I raised my head and was charmed again by her smile.

“…ehm, is there something on my face…?”

“Ah, no, nothing.”

“Okay…?”

In order to hide my embarrassment, I started devouring the food in front of me.

~

After dinner, we borrowed a towel and a pail from Sophia.

“The towel is 500 Gould, the pail 1000. Do you need water?”

“No, we’ll get by with magic. Give us two each, please.”

“You’re very skilled, I see. It will be 3000 Gould, then.”

I paid with three silver coins, received the towels and pails and gave one of each to Finne.

We arrived before the door to our rooms and I spoke to Finne.

“Finne, your pail.”

She looked puzzled as she handed it to me.

“Just hold it like that.”

I then started filling her pail with hot water.

“Eh? It’s steaming…?”

“Composite magic. I made it myself.”

By combining fire and water magic, I could create hot water directly.

“A-amazing! Oh, but I almost forgot! I have to pay my share for the towel and pail.”

Finne started searching her pockets, but I told her she didn’t need to repay me and entered my room before she could reply.

“Eh? Ah, er, my share…”

Let me do at least that for you, come on.

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