「……Well, that was an unexpected development.」
Rei muttered to himself while sitting on a chair inside a meeting room on the first floor, where he had been ushered to by a guild staff who told him ‘it will get busy soon, so please wait here’.
In response, Elena shrugged her shoulders as she turned to look at the door of the meeting room……or rather, the three stone statues that were also inside.
It turned out that the stone statues Rei brought back had been members of a party called Sky Bells, the remaining members had put out a search request for them. Because of that, they decided to wait in the guild while the other members of their party were contacted.
「But, it’s not a waste of of time since lives were at stake, right? Besides, you’re now being paid for completing the request.」
Both Rei and Elena were sitting on chairs in the meeting room, but as expected of a noble lady, Elena looked quite elegant.
However, Rei shook his head at her words.
「Don’t you know, Elena? It costs a lot to treat someone who has been petrified. Even if you ask a mage with healing magic to help, the magic required to remove petrification is quite difficult, so you need to spend a considerable amount of money. Even if you use a magic item to do it, they are also very expensive. ……Honestly, if they’re not close friends, they’ll probably just throw them out and be done with it. There’s a good chance that will be the case. ……Or is it different?」
At the end of his words, Rei called out towards the door.
While he had been talking, two people had walked up the stairs before eventually stopping outside the meeting room.
They had probably realised that Rei was talking to them and eventually, the door opened, and they entered the meeting room.
The man and women were both in their twenties. The man was dressed in leather armour and had a long sword and a woman in a robe with a staff who gave off the aura of a mage.
The moment the woman saw Rei and Elena……she gave a scream as she backed away.
The man, who had been about to speak, was taken aback by her sudden action and called out to her.
「Hey, Neve, what’s wrong?」
Realising why the female mage called Neve was reacting like that, Rei spoke to the man.
「It would be best to take her out of the meeting room for now. Fortunately, her ability to see magic power doesn’t seem to work from there.」
The woman called Neve hadn’t reacted badly until she had entered the meeting room and saw Rei and Elena in person and man seemed to understand what Rei was saying.
Elena also nodded and the man assisted Neve out of the meeting room.
「I was told that it was rare for someone to have the ability to see magic power, so why does it seem like there are quite a lot of them?」
「Really? There are definitely those in the military that have that ability, but in reality there aren’t that many. There are also large differences in their actual ability to sense magic power.」
「Even though there might not be a lot of them, I suppose most took that advantage to become adventurers.」
After discussing that for a while, it seemed like Neve had finally calmed down. The man who had previously left the room came back. ……Along with Neve.
「Are you okay? If you can sense magic power, it must be tough for you to be here, right? There’s no need to push yourself too hard.」
「No, I’m fine. You saved my party members, so let me thank you for that. ……Thank you.」
Neve bowed her head at Elena’s words of concern.
Rei and Elena had been the ones to rescue their party members, so they held no hostility. With that in her mind, she was able to stifle her inner fears.
Elena seemed to realise that. Perhaps she liked the way Neve responsed, Elena gave a small smile.
Seeing her smile, both the man and Neve were thrown into a panic as their cheeks flushed.
「So, thank you for rescuing our friends. Thank you. Sorry for introducing myself late, but I’m Mel. The Leader of Sky Bells.」
The man, Mel, bowed his head, but Rei and Elena could only look at the two with complicated expressions on their faces.
Certainly, if Rei’s party had saved them from danger, they would have accepted their gratitude wholeheartedly, but this time, they had only rescued the three adventurers in a state of petrification.
「Raise your heads. I’m grateful for your thanks, but you also need to consider the situation more closely. The three people we rescued were probably attacked by some sort of monster with the ability to petrify. To release them from their current state……」
It would cost a considerable amount of money. Mel and Neve both gave a small smile towards Elena as she told them that.
There was definitely sadness in their eyes, but at the same time, there was also hope.
「I can’t use healing magic. But if they are just petrified, there is a way to release them, either by magic or medicine. Compared to searching for three people whose whereabouts and situation are unknown, it’s a lot easier.」
Neve smiled with tears brimming at the edge of her eyes as she said that.
At the end of her gaze was the stone statue of the petrified Elf. The look she directed towards the statue was not one of friendship but rather something more.
It had nothing to do with the fact that they were both women. Seeing Neve’s expression, Elena immediately knew their relationship.
Seeing Neve like that, Mel gave a sigh of relief.
He had known how Neve had been feeling after the disappearance of their other three party members, including her lover.
「Anyhow, I am grateful that you brought the three of them back. I heard that you found them on the 14th floor, but could you tell me more?」
Neve looked over at Rei and asked if he had any more information, to which Rei responded with a shake of his head.
「I’m sorry, but they were already in a petrified state when we found them. We guess it was probably a Basilisk, but we didn’t see one. Luckily, there was no sign of the monster that petrified them, so I just stored them into my item box and left the place. That’s about all I can tell you.」
「……I see. But, the 14th floor……we had all said it was too early for us to go there.」
「May I ask what floor you would usually work on?」
Elena asked after hearing Mel’s regretful words.
「Yeah, we don’t really need to hide it……you are our benefactors after all. We usually work on the 10th floor. We’ve reached the 15th floor, but that was only as porters for a senior party, the desert floors were a heavy burden to us. That was why we usually worked on the 10th floor, which is just before the desert floors……you idiots.」
Mel spat out in frustration.
「Maybe they had a reason, otherwise they wouldn’t have gone to the 14th floor without telling us anything.」
「I know. ……They had been missing for almost a week, and now they’ve been found in a petrified state.」
His fingers dug into his clenched fist as several drops of blood fell to the floor.
「Mel, it’s fine. They’re not dead. All we have to do now is to make some money to treat the three of them.」
「Yeah. That’s right. I’ll definitely bring them back, then I’m going to ask them why, and then I’m going to beat them to a pulp.」
Elena looked at the two of them encouraging each other and lightly pulled on Rei’s Dragon Robe as she looked towards the door.
Rei understood her intentions and gave a small nod. Neve noticed when the two of them started to leave the meeting room.
「Ah, w-wait! I’d like to thank you for what you did……」
「We didn’t save them for the reward. There’s no need.」
「That’s right. You two will need a lot of money to treat the three of them, don’t you? Rather than paying us for bringing them here by coincidence, you should keep the money for that. I’ll explain it to the guild staff.」
「But, that……thank you for being so kind to us.」
If Rei’s party had been in need of money, they might have taken the reward. However, Elena was a duke’s daughter and a general to begin with and had no lack of money, it was the same for Rei.
They had also received a large amount of money for selling the materials they had obtained from the dungeon and they had been paid quite a bit for the Spear Frog, Antlion, and the three corpses they had brought out from the dungeon previously.
Considering that, they didn’t want to leave a bad taste in their mouth for accepting the reward here.
……That said, they did spend a considerable amount of money on buying food for the three of them.
Rei and Elena didn’t care much for it, but Neve herself couldn’t seem to accept being so one sidedly supported.
As an adventurer, she probably thought it natural that they should be rewarded for completing a request.
Because of that, she tried to speak up again, but stopped after Mel reached for her shoulder and silently shook his head.
「……Please, let us know if something happens one day that we can help with. You are the ones who saved my friends. I owe you this favour. We’ll do whatever it takes to repay you. I’ll make sure they know that.」
Rei decided that he probably wouldn’t be able to get them to back down any further and just sighed as he said those words before leaving the meeting room with Elena.
Mel and Neve bowed silently as they saw the two off them off.
After coming back down from the first floor, Rei and Elena headed straight for the guild staff member they had talked with earlier.
Normally, they would have gone to a different counter which dealt with completed requests, but they decided it would be better to talk to someone who was aware of the circumstances.
As a side note, both Byune and Vihera had left the guild and were nowhere to be seen.
「Ah, Rei-san. Elena-san as well. Is this about the earlier request?」
「Yes, that’s right. I would like to let the guild know I have no intention of collecting the reward for the request as we didn’t bring them back with the intention of completing the request.」
The guild staff looked surprised for a moment at Rei’s words but soon gave a small nod.
She probably knew that it took a lot of money to cure petrification.
Still, just to be sure, she asked for confirmation.
「Are you sure? Even if you demand payment at a later point, we can no longer provide the reward.」
「Yeah, we don’t need the reward. The reason we brought the three petrified people back was purely coincidence. We hadn’t even taken up the request in the first place.」
「……I understand. I shouldn’t be the one to say this, but please allow me to thank you. Thank you very much.」
The guild staff gave a deep bow.
The guild staff member had been hired at about the same time the party member of Sky Bells had come to Exil. Because of that, she had formed a personal relationship with the party.
Her bow of gratitude was because of that.
「We declined the rewards, but it’s still going to be tough for them.」
「Yeah, I have no doubt. However, I believe that the fact that their friends are not dead will help them through the siutation. Besides……Mel is sure to be fine.」
The last words said by the guild staff were quiet, but Rei and Elena still heard them clearly with their sharpened sense of hearing.
Rei simply thought that the guild staff before him, a woman in her 20’s with a short cut, was worried about Mel. However, Elena did not. From Neve’s reaction back in the meeting room, Elena was sure that the guild staff was more than just worried for Mel.
(It seems there are a lot of complicated relationships. Although that might be natural considering guild receptionists and adventurers can become quite close.)
At that moment, what popped into Elena’s mind was the Catkin receptionist from Gilm’s guild. Or rather, the person she saw through Yellow’s memories.
Maybe she was also affected by the female Foxkin adventurer who had also been part of Sky Bells.
「Elena, what’s wrong?」
「No, it’s nothing. I was just thinking about something, don’t worry about it.」
Elena responded to Rei without thinking, but it was clear that her mood had turned somewhat sullen. Rei couldn’t understand why as he tilted his head.
The guild staff watched the two of them with a smile before looking further into the guild.
It was already near evening and the number of adventurers in the guild was gradually increasing.
In fact, in the counters aside from the one Rei was at, there were already people queuing to sell materials.
Seeing the other guild staff look at her, she hurriedly spoke up.
「In that case, things are getting busy, so I’ll let you get back to your work. Thank you very much for today.」
She quickly bowed her head as she told Rei and Elena that there wasn’t anything else they needed to concerned about before the two of them left the guild.
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Pingback: Legend Chapter 465 | Silent Translations
ZaxJune 12, 2022 at 5:43 am
Thanks for the chapter
fatpandaJune 12, 2022 at 6:47 am
Thank you very much for the double chapters.
Some typos spotted, please take it easy.
> Even if you ask a mage with healing magic to help, the magic required to remove petrification is quite /difficutl/, so you need to spend a considerable amount of money.
> While he had been talking, two /peopl/ had walked up the stairs before eventually stopping outside the meeting room.
> So, thank you for /resucing/ our friends.
> Neve looked over at Rei and asked if he had any more information, to which Rei responded with a /shak/ of his head.
> That was why we usually worked on the 10th floor, which is just before the /deser/ floors……you idiots.