Regular weekly(ish) release. ~~
(insert rant here)
One hour later, we arrive in the capital city.
Eh? Don’t you think elapsed time is strange? What about seeing interesting things in the village? Oh well… Won’t we be able to use <Portal> to go there after we reach the capital?
It isn’t as bad as when we were traveling around without a goal, but with time limit, we have to travel as fast as we can. So I use <Warp> and <Flash Step> (TL note : formerly <blink>, it is more in line with skill than with magic.). In other words, head towards the capital at high speed and then use <Portal> to bring the carriage here after that.
Of course, I place <Portal> points at all of the villages I passed, so we can go there later. Preparation for something like this is really interesting. Well… it is kind of bad for sightseeing…
I mean… Because of Alta’s suggestion, I gave more priority to decreasing travel time.
Oh, well. There were only a few monsters along the way, so it was a peaceful, but boring, journey.
That’s right. There was a reason I moved faster than I did at Tiara Forest. Since <Warp> can move a user to where the user can see, I used it to jump high up in the sky, and then I used it again immediately to get further range. Since MP efficiency when used with no chanting is bad, I had to use ground movement combos almost non-stop to keep moving. However, it was good that no one saw me…
[Master, didn’t you say you need seven days to travel to the capital?]
[That was in the past. It is currently only one hour now.]
[Common sense doesn’t work with Master, after all…]
I only told Coco and the newcomer slaves in the wagon (inside <Room>) that we were going to travel at high speed. Deceiving them by saying that it is my family’s secret technique.
I queue up in the row to enter the town.
At the capital, we discover that it is surrounded by ten-meter high wall. The gate itself is 5 meters high. The carriages of others also form a line. The procedure for carriages seems to be slower than the one for people who came on foot.
[Oh, yeah. Why don’t you show them that brown envelope from Gilbert?]
It seems to have a variety of writing in it. I only looked at the map, but I’m certain he prepared something more than just hotel recommendations.
[Since this map is good, I want to talk about something.]
I hand the documents inside the brown envelope to Sakura.
[Oh, we will able to pass the outer wall’s gate with this.]
Right, Gilbert put a priority pass for nobles in this brown envelope. I have a feeling he didn’t told me about this because he thought I would see it when I looked at the map. However, I still want an explanation.
Our turn has come. I hand Gilbert’s letter to the gate keeper, and then we pass through the gate without paying the toll.
I guess they are going to report this to the higher ups. In short, the matter of us travelling so fast is very likely to be known, but the matter of me stopping the stampede single-handedly is really absurd. I guess it’s too late to conceal that now…
[It is really big.]
We see the imperial castle as soon as we enter the city. We see it in the distance. It’s a wonderful western-style castle in the middle of the city. Mio’s and Dora’s eyes are sparkling.
There are a lot of Japanese-style buildings mixed in with the western-style, and so both together gave me a sense of incompatibility. The crime of the hero who spread Japanese culture in such a half-baked manner like this is heavy. However, I couldn’t help but admit that I thought the rice was a good idea.
Sakura’s eyes are in stark contrast with those in the childish group. Her expression already shows it…
[Uh… It is nothing.]
[It shows on your face. It won’t happened this time. It won’t. Please believe me.]
Sakura smiles a little. It seems to be a really unpleasant memory. I want to do something for her. How about destroying that kingdom? Uh… No. It is scarier if she smiled because of that…
[Master, we have arrived.] Sera says, stopping the carriage.
It seems this place is the hotel that Gilbert recommended. It’s called “Hotel In Forest”? I don’t really understand what that means.
A heavily-built person who resembles somebody’s aunt is the receptionist. Poster girl! Where’s the poster girl!?
A: There isn’t one.
[Gilbert recommended this place to me. I want to stay about ten days.]
[All right. Because of Gill-bocchan’s recommendation, I will give you a bit of a discount.]
Gill-bocchan… A good-looking young master…
I grin a little as I pay the rent for two rooms. I decide to split the main members and newcomer slaves this time.
I will be in the room with the main members.
[Well, then. A customary visit to the slave market.]
[Are you going to increase the number of member?!] Mio says, surprise tinging her words.
Well, it is my basic tactic…
[Well, Alta found an interesting slave.]
[What kind of slave this time? Another secret?]
[Well, We had a batch earlier. So I plan to add female knight as subordinate next.]
[Oh… Ah? Eh? A female knight? In this country?]
[Why is that kind of person a slave?]
In this country, it’s normally impossible for a knight to become a slave.
[Who knows? I couldn’t go so far as to know personal details. However, it’ll be a huge loss if we don’t. She will die if we don’t buy her soon.]
[Since you put it that way, let’s hurry.] Maria says, urging me.
Even if the other party is an unrelated person, it seems that she is worried about the loss I will feel if I can’t buy the female knight.
[Yeah, you don’t need to take a lot of people there…]
[I will go.]
[Uh… Okay, Maria.]
Since Maria doesn’t want to leave me alone, I take her along. That can’t be helped.
[By the way, her primary purpose is going to be training and leading the newcomers. It is easy to get involved in trouble if we have only children, no matter how strong we are.]
[So this means that the newcomers will have to take action soon.]
I have enough people and following monsters for traveling. If the newcomer group has a leader, it will be safe to let them take separate actions, to some degree. Well, I have Alta, so I don’t need to worry, but… I think having a guardian in visible form is necessary, too.
[Yeah, this is the reason. Oh, the rest of you can enjoy sightseeing around the capital. Please tell those newcomers, too.]
Oh! Dora doesn’t understand what we were discussing.
Maria and I leave the hotel and head towards the slave market. I know the destination by <Map>, but it is quite far. As expected from the capital, it is so large that I can’t compare it to any other town I’ve experienced before. The population is about 100,000 people, and that is considered to be a lot in this world.
It is hard to protect a city this large with one barrier, so they use “barrier stone” (which is what the people in this world call it) to protect each block.
We arrive at the slave market after walking for fifteen minutes. Since it is troublesome to move with slaves, I will use <Portal> to return in secret.
My specific order to the slave dealer is as follows: “a dirt-cheap, female slave”. Well, this feels like a template, but it was what Alta told me.
The slave dealer leads me to the usual dark room.
[The slaves with dirt-cheap prices are here. Oh! Let’s put on these clothes first because it is too unsightly inside.]
Yes, that’s right.
A: The conditions are considerably severe as the slave dealer said. Are you prepared?
Of course. I’m all right… I think.
[Even if it’s bad, are you still going to show me the slave?]
[Customers also have reasonable taste, too]
All right, I’ll wear those clothes. Yeah, it’s seriously bad inside.
First, she is seriously damaged. All of her arms, eyeballs, and breasts are missing. Yeah… this is seriously too much. Her wounds are clean cut. Probably cut by something sharp rather than be torn off. I can see the cut section clearly. Her eyeballs were scooped out; her nose was cut off; and her hair was shaved until there was nothing left.
Her vocal cord was completely destroyed, so she’s not able to speak. The tendons in her feet were cut, and she has spear-like things piercing her feet. Her mouth and groin were full of knife wounds.
Despite this dreadful state, her ears are completely fine. In short, she only knows her surroundings by hearing. And there is a trace of the recovery magic was used on her since there was no spillage of blood. That means she won’t die, even though she’s in this state.
I could say she is being kept alive.
[What on earth is that?]
The slave dealer looks troubled when he hears my question.
[Someone bought her here. I wanted to refuse at first, but…]
The slave dealer evades the topic. I think he was paid for this, too. It is unusual to go that far after making them a slave…
[Well, for now, there is nothing she can be used for, so treating her is also troublesome.]
Maria’s and Sera’s treatment were bad, too, but not as bad as this. This is the worst I’ve seen…
This world is large, and there is a slave that has a fate worse than Maria and Sera. (Look far away). From the look of it, Maria also feels pity, too.
[It is better to sell her off than to kill her outright. However, I can’t leave her unattended in this situation either since I have to give her enough food to keep her from starving to death.]
The person in question hears what the slave dealer said. She can hear the voice, after all…
[Understood. I will buy her.]
[Eh… Really? No, seriously, no. Are you okay with that?]
The slave dealer’s eyes changed. He looks at me as if I were some kind of madman. Well, that can’t be helped since I said I was going to buy the slave.
[Yeah, I have no problem with that.]
The slave dealer is dumbfounded.
[E-Err, the price is… 3,000 g, sir.]
Yep, that’s a new low.
It takes 10,000 g for a slave’s collar (which is the same as Sera’s price), but it’s more expensive than the slave at this price.
[Oh! That’s right. Please notice that <Slave Crest> has no effect on this slave.]
<Slave Crest> is only placed on a partner who’s at a lower stand or is approved for it. In game terms, the failure is dependent upon the slave’s art level and the partner’s level. It is possible for this female knight to resist because of her high level.
I register as owner, buy a slave’s collar from the slave dealer, and put it in the bag. It seems she can’t walk, so I have no choice to carry her. Like a very big piece of luggage.
I was able to obtain the new slave safely. I go into a back alley and then return to the carriage with <Portal> afterwards. After arriving at the carriage, I place the female knight on the chair. Sit? I guess “put her on it” is more appropriate.
[Just a moment.]
Maria stops me. What’s wrong?
[Is it okay for me to educate her first?]
[Yes, this person is going to see a miracle in front of her eyes. I need to explain this to her first, so Jin-sama won’t feel unpleasant…]
Oh! Is it about me hating to be called God? Yeah, I don’t want to be called a god, too…
[Well, I don’t mind…]
[I’m very sorry, but could you step outside since unpleasant words are going to be spoken during the explanation?]
I’m sure I will still hear it from outside. If so, should I go somewhere else?
[I will return in one hour. Please send me a telepathic message when you are done.]
[Not that long!]
Well, it was about ten minutes.
[Yeah, I’m ashamed to say that I’ve said unpleasant things many times since Jin-sama picked up this slave.]
God, noble and hero, all at once.
[It was fortunate that something like this didn’t happen with Sera-chan. However, I noticed this while slave’s numbers are increasing. It is possible that a slave in a similar situation as mine will appear. I think it is necessary to educate them beforehand.]
Maria declared this proudly.
[It can’t be done half-heartedly. I want to spend my time educating slaves properly to make them useful to Jin-sama, if only just a little.]
I was surprised by Maria’s intention and decide to kill some time outside of the carriage obediently. Since everybody is shopping in the capital, there is no one left… or so I thought.
Sera received a telepathic message from Maria and returns to escort me with <Portal>.
Sera walks close to me and hugs my arm. The feeling on my upper arm is quite comfortable. I realize we haven’t had any time to spend alone recently.
[Master, is there any place you want to go?]
[Huh? Why don’t you join the other members?]
[Well, you don’t really need to mind because we are each acting on our own.]
I look at <Map>, and I see a group of three to four people, each occupying themselves in their own way. Sakura isn’t moving much since she’s with Iris and Yuria in the library. Mio and Dora are buying ingredients together with Roro. The timid Adel is their baggage carrier. Cloud, Knot, Coco and Sicily are looking around inside the weapons shop.
I don’t think they will get lost on the way back.
So I decide to wander aimlessly and do some window shopping with Sera in the capital city.
By the way, Sera moved a stranded carriage that got in the way with one hand; beat an escaped wyvern from the circus into submission (but she didn’t tame it); emptied a few food stalls; and rescued a child who fell from the third floor of a building with <Flash Step>, all without any major incidents.
Time passed swiftly, and I received a telepathy call from Maria about an hour later.
<<Sorry for keeping you waiting. The preparation has been done. Could you return now?>>
<<Understood. I will go there immediately.>>
An hour is really short.
[Sera, what are you going to do after I return?]
[I’m going to return, too. I will wait in another room if you don’t want to be disturbed.]
We open the <Portal>. I go to the carriage, and Sera goes to the hotel.
[Jin-sama, please use <Revival> with her.]
I don’t see any change in her.
A: There is a big difference. Please look at this.
<Map> is displayed. There are four blue dots inside the carriage, which represent my allies. Maria, Tamo-san, Midoir and this female knight. Even though I didn’t use <Engage Link> with the female knight yet, she is shown as a blue dot on <Map>. In fact, she was green when I brought her.
In short, this is the result of be educated by Maria for one hour.
Uh… What was happened here?
A: Do you want to know?
No, that’s okay. I don’t want to hear the details.
I ignore everything else and start chanting <Revival>. The chanting is completed ten minutes earlier than the last time.
She is surrounded by light just like Maria, and her appearance is gradually changing.
After the light has settled, a beautiful woman is standing there. She has waist-length, silver hair and ruby red eyes. Her breasts are slightly smaller than Sera’s. Her arms and legs are long and slender, without any wounds.
Just ten minutes ago, she was a mess, but now I can see her body in detail since she is still naked, just like she was when I brought her from the slave dealer.
This female knight touches her own limbs and face, and then closes her eyes after she is done. A stream of tears come from beneath her closed eyes. A few moments later, she kneels down, putting both hands together. Then, she starts to pray as she bows.
Yep, another believer. I think this female knight will give me not only loyalty, but her faith, as well.
No, I had a feeling she was going to be like this when I left her with Maria. I mean, it almost as if Maria brainwashed her in this situation…
And Maria nods like she is satisfied.
[Jin-sama, please give an order to this new servant.]
Maria’s response? Suggestions? This female knight doesn’t move, at all. I guess she has been trained to stay like this in her line of work.
Let’s talk for now. What should I say to her?
[Err… Are you okay?]
Yep, my mind isn’t working at this particular moment. It feels different than it usually does when I greet newly-purchased slaves…
[Yes, I was able to get a new life thanks to the mercy of Master. This knight’s body doesn’t belong to me now. I want to give you my body — as well as my loyalty, at the very least.]
Her appearance isn’t appropriate for this declaration of loyalty. Perhaps this is what she heard from Maria: “Treating him like a god is NG. Only your loyalty is acceptable.” Is this what she said?
…Although NG words are avoided, treatment as if one were a god isn’t.
Well, let’s check the female knight’s status for now. I feel sorry for calling her “female knight” all the time.
Skill: <Sword Mastery LV6> <Shield Mastery LV6> <Loyalty LV1> <Body Reinforced LV4>
Title: Jin’s slave, former queen knight.
She is a muscle-headed idiot, isn’t she? And she has <Loyalty> skill. When did she get this? Back when she was a knight?
A: A minute ago.
Oh, I see. She is already brainwashed… Well, there is nothing to lose if I leave her like this.
Oh, right. I need to know how much Maria told her.
<<Maria, How much information did you give Lusia?>>
<<About Jin-sama’s power and everything you can do. These are the main points in a newcomer’s education.>>
<<That doesn’t mean you have to tell her everything…>>
I have a feeling there’s something more that I’m worried about regarding this, but her current pose is distracting me from our discussion.
[Lusia, this is your order: you are going to train newcomer slaves whom are to accompany me. I have high expectations about your ability and leadership since you are a former knight.]
[Yes. Please leave it to me.]
Lusia’s pose is still one of praying as she says that. Will you stop that, please?
A: She will stay like this if Master or Maria don’t tell her to do anything else.
[We have to talk now. Please stand up.]
Lusia stands up as she was told, but doesn’t even try to cover her naked body, at all.
[Aren’t you embarrassed?]
[No. Since this body belongs to you already, I don’t mind if you want to look at me.]
[Well, I don’t think many man would feel anything unpleasant with your current appearance, especially compared to before you were cured.]
[Thank you very much.]
Honestly, I feel really happy. However, there is something that disappoints me. It is the slave’s collar. This collar is in stark contrast to her white skin. It might look good on her, but it isn’t my hobby.
Lusia reads my glance and opens her mouth.
[I have a humble request to ask of you. May I have a slave’s crest instead of a slave’s collar? I want to have it as a proof of my loyalty to you.]
No. This is totally different than what I was thinking.
As I said before, a slave’s crest can’t be carved if there is a huge different in ability or no mutual agreement.
[Okay. Please show me your back.]
She shows her back to me without hesitation.
<<Maria, did you tell her about my slave’s art?>>
<<No, I just told her you can do anything, and she shouldn’t be surprised when she saw it.>>
Maria’s education is scary. Lusia was made into a believer by Maria’s combination of special magic revival and religious fanaticism.
Come to think of it… She didn’t give me any reaction when I called her name without allowing her to introduce herself first.
While it was surprising in Maria’s case, Lusia’s case is totally different. Her skin is really beautiful. No… It is strange when I think about it carefully. Don’t knights usually have a few wounds? Did <Revival> cure all of her old wounds, too?
I see. Old wounds are considered to be “Damage”, too. It seems the value of person will be increased when I heal old wounds. Well, recovering damage is magical…
I carve a slave crest on her — for now. I can put the crest of a temporary slave on her because of our mutual agreement. It seems the slave’s collar is unnecessary now. Yep, I don’t need to put anything extra on her.
[Thank you very much.] Lusia says while bowing.
Well then, should we go to the main topic now?
[Lusia, why did you become a slave in that state?]
This is the first thing I need to know.
[Yes, that is…]
[I see. It is as I expected, after all.]
[Jin-sama, what should we do?]
[No, we don’t need to do anything. We will stay in this city for ten days as per our original plan.]
After I heard the story from Lusia, it confirms the story I heard from Alta. The situation becomes slightly problematic for us.
[Just in case, should we prepare for the countermeasure?]
~Fin Arrival in the Capital and a Female Knight