Shin, who left the restaurant, turned around on his foot toward the library. Even though the request was not completed yet, it didn’t have a time limit. So he didn’t need to hurry. From now on, because of his conduct during the last few days, he intended to carefully study the possible sense of an impending crisis.
“Is it here?”
Shin was at the middle point of the commercial and residential districts. Loud voices from energetic merchants could be heard occasionally. It was a quiet place compared to the commercial district.
And in front of Shin, there was a library standing tall before his eyes. The library, which was managed by the Bayreuth kingdom, was named the Royal Magic Library.
It seemed to have plenty of magic category books assembled together, but he was told by Tsugumi that the information about common knowledge that he didn’t understand, could be found here. Though there were books that couldn’t be read without permission inside, there was no problem, since Shin intended to only study within a readable scope at this time.
From the information desk, the chairs, tables, and the large quantity of bookshelves in the library, there was nothing special about it, nor were there features that could distinguish it from other libraries. Just in case, he received an explanation about the usage at the information desk, he summarized the matters that required attention, such as how he could only rent 3 books at a time, how there was a limit in amount of rental days, and how he was free to read inside the library, but how it would cost money if he borrowed one.
As for the rental cost, it was based on what kind of book it was, and how many days it was rented for. Of course, if a book was lost, there would be a fine. The general rule for the books which required permission to be read, was that it was prohibited to rent them, and there were books that couldn’t be read without certain social status and/or trust such as the senior adventurers and the court service officers.
If there was a valuable book, one would think that a thief would break into the library. But there were guards and soldiers who kept watch on the surroundings in the building. In addition, they also had the skill for crime prevention, so no fellow could act violently.
(Is it level Ⅷ 【Barrier】 and 【Wall】? So that’s why they are so full of confidence.)
Although he doubted that the skill barrier used was stronger than the rampart, he still admired that the barriers were never broken since from the very beginning.
After receiving the explanation, he was instructed where the books of which field were located at. Then, he gathered books around the library and sat down on a empty seat.
First, the history. After all, Shin thought that the first thing he had to do was to investigate about the ‘Dusk of the Majesty’, which seemed to be connected to the simultaneous logout from the death game. Because there was a chronology which listed the big events since the country was founded in the book, he opened it at once.
“First of all, from the recent events. Um, it’s the 511th years now from when the country was founded, huh? Because it’s said that the ‘Dusk of the Majesty’ occurred 500 years ago, and it was almost in the same time period as the founding of the country.”
He traced back the chronological table to the past while looking puzzled due to the strange coincidence. There were numerous things related to the national administration that were written, such as the conclusion of the alliance, the kings taking over, funerals, wars, large-scale constructions, and so on. As he looked at the end of the chronology, which was the part about the country’s founding.
“No info about the ‘Dusk of the Majesty’ is written here, not even a little.”
Only the founding of the Bayreuth kingdom was written about in the chronology, anything that happened earlier than that wasn’t written about.
“Well, it’s a chronology after all. I guess that it was written about in other books.”
He opened another history book while pulling himself together. However, most of the content in the opened books did not describe in detail the ‘Dusk of the Majesty’.
Though he read several history books afterward, the conclusion was still the same. Only one of the books seemed to have written about the event.
“The world has changed after that day…”
The king left, the country disappeared, and it was written that the world had changed, but it was not written clearly about what happened to the world afterwards. Apparently, after the ‘Dusk of the Majesty’, there was temporary chaos around the world, but the ‘Dusk of the Majesty’ was not described in detail. It seemed odd that there was so little recorded in the book about the players’ logout, where they were thought to have vanished.
He took out one of the books from the mountain of books while thinking that no book could provide him with the info he wanted.
It seemed to be a book about races, and each feature and characteristic was briefly described.
Human ―― They have the highest number in population, and there were a lot of countries, too. When a kingdom was established, the ruler was called a King.
Dragnil ―― Power and vitality were prominently high, have a long life. It can transform into the shape of a human. When an empire was established, the king was called a Dragnil King.
Beast ―― They have the highest number in population next to humans, they are keen and nimble, and have different characteristics in every tribe. When the tribe was gathered together and formed an alliance, the chief was called a Beast King.
Lord ―― There was a little bias about their ability, also no ability that seemed prominent, but as a whole, their abilities have the tendency to be high. When the empire was established, the king was called a Devil King.
Dwarf ―― They have skillful hands and are good at making armor and tools. They were scattered in every country and formed a guild which had the tendency to share their technique and craft. The best craftsman was called a Cave King.
Pixie ―― They are the longest living race, they excelled at magic handling. The pixies were divided between the ones who lived in this world, and the ones who lived in the fairy village in the other world, which exchange with each other. The king was called a Fairy King.
Elf ―― Their lifespans come 2nd after the pixies, not only magic, but also their crisis perception ability was high. They lived in the woods. Young elves often appeared outside the village. The village was called the garden, and the chief was called the Forest King.
There were no contents that differed from Shin’s knowledge. Although Shin momentarily felt a sense of incongruity for the dwarf’s best craftsman, who was called the Cave King, he remembered that there was a setting where dwarves originally lived in caves.
Because there was a chance that an Elf or Pixie might know about the ‘Dusk of the Majesty’, he made sure to memorized that part.
“Now then, what should I read next?”
He decided to investigate as long as the time permitted, and opened the next book.
While Shin was doing the investigation in the library, executives, such as Barlux and Els, were preparing for a meeting in a room of the adventurers’ guild.
Of course, the agenda was the Skull Face. Even though the situation called for waiting for the appraisal of the jewel, the members that had some free time were gathered for the time being. There was a possibility that the information was accurate, because the one who reported was said to hold a letter of introduction. Since the Skull Face had already been defeated, the sense of urgency was not high, but the Shin’s personality in the report of Barlux and Els was raised to some extent.
Though the man called Shin seemed to be easily trusted, there was never a case where a dangerous person held the letter of introduction, so it gave the report some credibility.
“Well then, let’s start the special meeting.”
All the members in the room directed their attention to Barlux in response to his voice.
“Though there are people who have already heard this, the Jack • Skull Face that appeared in the northern forest was subdued. The one who subdued it only collected a jewel, which is currently under investigation.”
All the members looked puzzled due to the words from Barlux, who reported plainly. The first one to speak was Ardi, who was just dispatched as a liaison from the kingdom. The mage, Arad Royl, who was in charge of the appraisal of the jewel, nodded as he had the same kind of doubt. Kylie Ein, who was the sub-master, and Els, who knew about the circumstances, had no reaction. Then Barlux continued.
“The person told me that the sword and armor were not a big deal.”
“Not a big deal?…”
Ardi had the expression of someone who didn’t understand. Arad was laughing “hohoho” while combing down his beard.
“To declare something like that, it seems that this man’s wealth is quite considerable.”
Although Arad’s hair and beard were white-colored because of his old age, due to his well-developed back muscles, which were tightly visible, he didn’t look as old as he was. The way he laughed suited the good-natured old man.
“The fellows who hold the introduction letter are generally thoughtless fellows. They don’t care about losing their life, especially the young ones.”
“Is that so?”
“Wait! Wait! Though I have no obligation to say this, we are not that thoughtless.”
“It’s not convincing when guild master says so.”
Ardi was about to believe Arad’s claim as common sense. But Barlux interfered, and was put down by Els.
“Well, let’s go back to the jewel case. I don’t know the details yet, but apparently there are no mistakes, at least about the story of its level being 359.”
“Still. It would be nice if the proof part was collected. The problem is whether or not a similar monster has appeared.”
It was likely a little joking, and the moderate tension became loose from Arad’s honest report. Because there was no one excelling Arad in jewel appraisal in the guild, it was decided that a Skull Face that had the level of at least a King class had appeared.
“The staff that’s skillful in searching has already gone out to investigate it. The information will be assembled tomorrow.”
Kylie complemented in a calm tone. Black hair held together with a barrette, light brown pupils and long-narrow eyes could be seen from the interior of her glasses. The secretary of Barlux had good looks and skill combined, and a sword could be seen at her hips.
“As usual, Kylie did her work fast. The guild master should follow her example.”
“Our sub-master is excellent, old man Royl.”
“Can Barlux-sama focus on your work a little more?”
“She has no mercy.”
A few words from Kylie break the joke from Barlux. Barlux was not bad at office work particularly, but Kylie still seemed to be dissatisfied with him.
“Hmm, were you surprised that this is different than you thought?”
“No, well you might say, because I thought that the feeling of tension should remain a little bit.”
Arad asked Ardi, who was taken aback by the dialogue of the three people. He seemed to have a serious personality. Ardi said modestly, and yet he showed a slightly perplexed expression.
“Well it’s a usual case. Besides, this is something like a petty liaison meeting, rather than a conference. If this was a state of emergency, each district chief and S rank adventurers would gather here.”
“Still, only one Skull Face has been reported, right?”
Ardi understood that it was not an emergency situation, because only five people gathered, but he thought he might be too optimistic. Arad, who read Ardi’s mind, complemented Ardi so he revealed his true feelings.
“It seems so. To be honest, there is no knowing how many such monsters are out there, and there is a reason to do an assessment.”
“Is it the barrier’s protection?”
“Yes. Do you know about it?”
“It’s the barrier against monsters. It is said that monsters from outside the barrier will not be allowed to come near.”
“That’s right, the first King erected the barrier. Therefore, even if a strong monster is born, they can’t come inside the barrier. It also has the effect of silencing strong dark magic. In addition, we are being vigilant ourselves, too.”
The technique from the time the kingdom was founded was still protecting the Bayreuth kingdom. That was the reason why the amount of strong monsters that had appeared so far, hadn’t increased.
However, neither the kingdom nor the guild considered the barrier absolute, no matter how well it defended. In response to the Skull Face report, the knights’ group was prepared, so they could sally out by the thoroughgoing condition in the kingdom. Also, the subjugation report was not confirmed at the moment, so the adventurers were still waiting for orders and were working hard to gather information.
“Skull Faces become active at night. Ardi, in preparation for the worst case, I want you to contact the knight leader and raise the alertness order by one rank.”
Barlux spoke during the gap of the conversation between Ardi and Arad. The flustered state just a while ago seemed hard to believe. Judging from Arad, Kylie and Els’ attitude, it was probably a usual thing.
“That’s all from me. Does anyone have any other opinions? If not, I assume we are done.”
Arad, Els and Kylie thought it was over regarding the main report of the Skull Face from Barlux. However, Ardi raised his hand and Barlux nodded to let him convey his opinion.
“The Skull Face this time had a different weapon from the information we obtained. I would like you to give me detailed information on the person who subdued the Skull Face, so the investigation about the weapon can become clear after this.”
“Hmm, though there is no intention to cover up information about the weapon, I can’t reveal anything about the person who subjugated it, as it was his wish. Still, if it’s alright, lets take responsibility for it. I wonder about why you are making a fuss about this, may I hear the reason?”
“Yes. Though the story changed a little, does everyone know about the sword that flew to the royal castle?”
Naturally all the members nodded back. If there was no disturbance by the Skull Face, it would have been a hot topic by now.
“The Skull Face was subdued on the day when the sword flew to the royal castle, furthermore, the Skull Face that appeared this time was equipping a greatsword that was different from the normal ones. There is only one person who can connect these together, I think.”
Everyone except Ardi imagined one person from his remark.
“May I hear what kind of sword it was?”
“There’s a condition you must adhere to, or I can’t disclosed the information.”
All members agreed on Ardi’s condition. There was no person that didn’t know the importance of the information in this place.
“The sword’s blade is about 2 mels long and the material is a demon steel mixed with an alloy of mithril. Moreover, the sword has permanent light attribute magic bestowed upon it. If it is put side by side with our country’s treasured sword, then the treasured sword seems to be poorly made.”
Everyone couldn’t hide their surprise at his words. Speaking of the treasured sword of the Bayreuth kingdom, even at the lowest rank, it was a weapon that was classified as 《Legend》 grade. It was a national treasure grade of weapon that almost no person could forge, so there were no equal swords in existence right now. Let alone that a person thought that the Skull Face held it.
Because he was in the middle of a fight, Shin didn’t notice as he did not use the appraisal skill. He thought the greatsword of the Skull Face was of the lowest grade, but it had a self-restoration ability which was higher than 《Rare》 and 《Unique》.
“If it’s assumed that the Skull Face had the greatsword, then the person in question is indomitable, as the enemy had a weapon at the treasured sword level in addition to a high level was subjugated. But no need to worry, as it is impossible I think. Besides that, I was a little troubled by it…”
Though the worry about the strength of the person at hand was understandable, Barlux, who doubted the indescribably, indecisive of Ardi’s speech in the latter half, asked.
“Troubled by it?”
The content which Ardi recited was indeed true, although he had only guessed, and nobody came to have conclusive evidence, because there was no one who knew about the greatsword in detail. It was said that it was impossible for undead to have a weapon with the light attribute in this world.
“As for this, news may reach Barlux-dono soon, as it is likely to be announced grandly. Until then, please don’t tell anyone for the time being.”
“Hmm, understood. Should others leave this place?”
“Because the permission is given, it doesn’t matter, as I follow the same condition as a while ago. Since there is a possibility that everybody will know, too.”
Though everyone except Barlux had a question about the announcement place, they nodded for the time being, and then speech was urged to be started.
Afterwards, everyone who was present was perplexed about the content that leaked out of Ardi’s mouth.