The fort city E-Rantel had three walls, and the space between them had their own specialities.
The outermost space was used for the Kingdom’s garrison, and had equipment prepared, and there was quite a distance between that and the city walls. In addition, there was stone pavement, allowing for fast travelling.
The innermost section handled administrative stuff. And provisions were stored here, making this the most heavily guarded districts.
The remaining middle section was the section with various things for everyone. This section would best fit the image that came up when you heard the word “city”.
The squares with open air were filled with the particular noon air and people shouting in healthy loud voices were stopped.
Aged men were talking to merchants while searching for good food, and the men were attracted to the smell of roasted meat, and others were threading meat on skewers. Various vegetables, and food that had finished cooking. Stuff like that mixed together, and the air held their scents.
While looking left and right in that atmosphere, Momon walked along the squared paved with stone. Occasionally he would stop the shouts of the children asking him to buy stuff. While refusing by lightly waving his hand, he pushed apart the crowd, and never hit anyone.
Those footsteps were not lost. Momon went towards the inn he was informed off.
He had already left the square and the open air was cut off.
From there onwards was the district with lots of shops.
Momon passed through. The remains of ruts had puddles in them, and they reflected the light of the sun. His speed was quite bad, but when compared to the congestion of earlier this was much easier to walk in.
This was mostly due to the lack of people.
It was true that there were people entering and leaving the shops. Right in front of him were an old man with a horse carrying goods discussing with a man who was probably a shopkeeper. And if he looked to the side he would see various artisans wearing aprons carrying luggage.
However those were quite sparse. You cannot find shops with those types of people from where Momon is.
Naturally this was different from the regular shops or restaurants. And then there were differences in time slots.
None of those signboards that had what Momon was looking for, instead he was looking for a signboard which he had memorised.
Finding his targeted signboard, Momon’s legs became faster.
While removing the dirt from his leather boots, he climbed up the stairs to the second floor, Momon then pushed open the western door with his two hands.
The skylight was the only source of light so the inside was dark, and humans who were used to the light outside would find themselves in pitch darkness.
The room was larger than he had thought, about 15 metres wide and 20 metres long.
The first floor was a bar. In the middle was a counter. Behind it was about two rows of shelves, where several beer bottles were placed. In addition, if one opened the door, there would probably be a kitchen behind. Several tables dotted the place with chairs placed on top, implying that this was not working hours.
In the corner of the bar curved, and there were stairs leading up. From what Ishpen said, the second and third floors were rooms.
In the middle of the room, one man stared openly at Momon.
In his hands was a mop which he was using to wipe the floor. His thick arms were covered in scars that were from beasts or swords.
His head was completely shaved, not a strand of hair remaining.
His face was tough and held features like that of a beast. And his face had multiple scars
He looked more like a mercenary than a store owner, no matter how you look at it.
“We aren’t serving any alcohol.”
A hoarse voice which reminded one of a cracked bell spoke towards Momon.
“I would like you to give me a room. This place has been recommended by the Guild receptionist.”
“……An adventurer……An unknown face, and the Guild’s Nee-chan recommended. A novice.”
“It is so”.
“A shared room is five coppers per day.” The owner bluntly said. “Meals are oatmeal and vegetables. If you want meat, then one more copper. Mah, there might be bread instead of oatmeal.”
“If possible may I have a single room?”
“……This town has three inns for adventurers. Mine is the worst. Do you understand why the person at the Guild recommended this place?”
In front of the curious Momon, the owner’s shoulders moved to a dangerous angle.
“Think a little! Or is your age useless!”
In front of a voice with rage that would make the stomach churn, Momon did not break his peaceful expression. It was a face that an adult would make when faced with a child’s temper.
Hou, the owner breathed a sigh of slight astonishment.
“……You’ve got good nerves……The reason why she introduced this place to you, is because most people here are F or E Class adventurers. If you meet people of the same class, you can form a party with them. My place is great for finding suitable people for your party.”
The owner’s eyes moved.
“I don’t mind giving you a single room, but without contact you can’t make friends. The point of large rooms are for people like you. You sell your face there. I’ll ask one last time, shared or single, which one?”
“Then a shared room please?”
It was natural. The owner did not say anything to Momon who replied immediately, but nodded in a way that suggested that he understood.
“Then pay upfront.”
Momon casually reached into his chest, took out a pouch, and took out five copper coins. And he walked into the middle of the shop, and dropped them into the open hand of the owner.
Without counting the number of copper coins in his hand, the owner dropped them into his trouser pockets. And then he walked into the middle of the shop, and took out one key from the counter.
“Climb the stairs, first room on the right. Put your luggage inside the chest connected to your bed. This is the key.”
He handed Momon the key.
Momon caught the small key that drew a parabola in the air without any problems in the dark room.
“I think you understand without saying, but don’t go close to the other chests. Even a misunderstanding will be terrible. I don’t care to stop your fights. Your arm might break. Mah, you want to sell your face so you know, you probably won’t be killed.”
When the owner finished talking, his back turned to face Momon. There Momon called to stop him.
“Could you possibly wait for me?”
“Etto, I heard that if I went to the inn and asked the owner, the basic adventuring tools would be given to me. There is a high chance of not using them in this job, but it will be necessary in future.”
“You already have a request?”
“Yes, a porter.”
“Hou.” The owner looked closely at Momon’s body. His head tilted like he did not really understand. “Mah, I don’t believe the tests of the Guild to be wrong, but can you be a porter with such a body? ……Mah, fine.”
His eyes glanced over the sack Momon was carrying, and then to his clothes. His atmosphere was slightly different from a person that was going to criticise him.
“……The first thing is to buy clothes that adventurers need. If the shoes don’t work then sores can appear, so you can’t use them so put them aside. Then leather pants, leather shirts, and a set of gloves. Buy these for the future. There should be a little slack. They might stop an unexpected sword or fang. I’ve seen many guys who had their lives saved……This set is about five coppers. Mah, your current clothes look fine, so save those for later.
So the first thing should be a mantle.”
The owner was about to voice his surprise to the curious Momon and opened his mouth slightly. However, he closed his mouth like he understood anything.
“What, from which village did you come from?”
“You really know your stuff.”
“Ah, there are no travellers that don’t know the importance of a mantle. Then a guy who doesn’ travel. Then a guy with a figure like yours should be from a village.”
Instantly, the owner made a face like he was thought of as an idiot, but understanding that Momon did not have a hidden meaning behind it and his shoulders dropped. He then waved his head several times to drain the feeling.
“Mah fine. Mantles are, when you lie on the ground it steals heat. This thing simply steals your energy. Even if that is avoided it’s better to be used as a bedroll.But there is a price, it’s heavy and so I don’t recommend it on your first porter job. So substitute it with a cloak. And” The owner continued. “Mantles can be used as cover from the rain. Heat will be stolen from your body when you get wet. So buy it to avoid that.”
“How much is it?”
“Three silvers. Later there is silverware but mah, it’s convenient but if there’s one crockery then it’s enough. Anyway, if you’re a porter then it’s like that. Later the weapons and stuff are not with me, but go ask the guy selling them.”
“Then one mantle please.”
“Ah, I hand it over during dinner. Prepare the money by then.”
The owner waved his hands, and entered the middle of the store with the mop in one hand.
Momon watched his back, and when his figure disappeared completely, he climbed the stairs.
When he climbed, there were several windows open to let the light in, and it was completely different from the first floor. Momon gripped the doorknob right next to him and turned.
The door creaked as it opened.
Inside were eight shabby beds made of wood. Since the window was open, the outside air and light entered.
The frame was made of wood, and on top was a thin layer of straw. In place of a mattress was straw, and so to prevent bugs, it should be thrown away after usage. Because wheat was the staple here, acquiring straw should not be that difficult.
And on top of the straw were sheets. Rather than white, they were dirtied and were a grayish colour. Momon brushed his hand against it. It was a rough feeling. It was probably hemp.
Several strands of straw fell onto the floor.
Inside the room of eight beds, six chests were shut tight.
Momon went towards a chest with its lid open. Mah, it was beautiful. You would not believe that there were insects living in it.
Momon took of his shoes and climbed onto the bed. The bed creaked under his weight and he could feel the hard surface of wood through the thin layer of straw.
Even if you wanted to praise it, it was not a good bed. If he slept here, his body would be sore the next day. The soft beds of the Great Underground Tomb of Nazarick was greatly missed. But it cannot be helped. This had to be done.
Momon casually took out a ring from his bag, and wore it on top of his hemp gloves. Without closing his bag, he placed it on top of his chest.
Then, a faint sound was heard through the door.
Then there was an indication of the stairs being climbed. Numbered one. The human’s size was large.
Momon put himself on guard. His sense of caution was raised. While thinking this was unacceptable, he focused his attention on the door.
The door squeaked while opening.
Standing there was a woman. She could not be older than 20. Her red hair was cut short for ease of movement. Even if you wanted to look at it favourably, it was not evenly cut. It looked like a bird’s nest.
Her face was not bad, but her eyes were sharp, and he felt that not even a shred of makeup was applied.
In one hand was a wooden pail.
The leather armour she was wearing had a thin strap of metal attached, a thumbtack was hammered to it. Because she had no money or because it would not hamper her movement, a large iron place was stuck. A sword hung from her waist.
That woman thought that no one was around, and noticing Momon her eyes widened slightly.
But that was the end of it. Without talking or observing, she walked straight into the room towards one of the beds.
The smell of sweat and her body odour mixed, and the particular smell made its way even to where Momon was sleeping.
The woman dropped her waist onto what was probably her own bed. A loud thump was made as the bed raised a voice in protest.
Ignoring it, she unfastened the armour strap at her side, and removed her armour. Letting it down quietly onto the floor, she casually stripped off her hemp clothes. Being very cramp, her well rounded breasts were crushed.
Momon was watching and she probably noticed, but she continued to remove them.
If one evaluated the half-naked woman’s body, rather than a woman she was a warrior.
While there was a bit of fat under the skin, most was muscle. Her abdominals were completely split into six.
Because she had probably trained her chest, a large volume hanged downwards, and thrust forward strongly. It was about there, so the woman felt it.
Ignoring Momon’s gaze, the half-naked woman took out a bag and a bottle from her luggage.
Her body was covered in bruises, and looked like she was made out of them. There were many scratches and bruises. She took out a moist towel from the wooden bucket, and began wiping her body with it.
Her chest seemed quite soft and shook.
While Momon was aimlessly watching, the woman who had finished wiping then opened the bottle.
When she opened it, the smell from the inside painted the air.
Momon had a face of disgust at the strong smell. It was probably the smell of crushed herbs, and the strength of it stung one’s nose, and make tears well up.
The woman lifted out a green viscous fluid from the bottle, she covered her bruised body with it.
Momon had a worse face on.
The woman did not notice it, or maybe she ignored it. She then began to apply a bandage to it.
Momon made a completely disgusted face, pinching his nose, and watched the woman. The hands of the woman stopped once she finished applying first-aid.
The woman turned to face Momon. And her full chest shook with a considerable volume.
“So you saw something good?”
The woman thrust her naked chest while smiling.
Her smile was like that of a predator. If he said something weird, he could easily predict what would happen afterwards. And he understood that it was not something he would enjoy.
Momon was food in front of the predator.
Naturally, the only one thinking that was the woman in front of him.
Even if she thrust out her chest, if Momon were to be honest he would be troubled. He did not have much interest, and she was telling him to compare. But he did not think that there was much difference.
“It’s probably medicine but it stinks. My nose stings.”
While being bewildered at Momon’s reaction being different from what she expected, she exposed her face through the gap. Without looking at her, Momon reached into his bag and drew out a potion.
“Drink this, and then please wash the smell off with water?”
He placed the red bottle of potion of the bed near him, and turned his back to the woman and lied down.
The woman’s anger had vanished and so while being amazed, she examined the potion. Her adventurer knowledge of was not much, but even in her experience, she had never seen this before.
A fleeting thought of poison crossed her mind, but poison is also quite expensive. She could not think of any reason to do so here.
The man would profit by her drinking this. What would happen afterwards was unclear.
She removed the seal, and picked it up and smelled it. There was a citric smell.
She stuffed her finger inside and swirled it, causing the liquid to be stuck to her finger. She then put it to her mouth.
“Oh, it’s unexpectedly delicious?”
A citric taste filled her mouth. Her tongue was entranced by all the flavours. The woman glanced at the man, placed her hand on her hip and drank everything in one gulp. When everything was in her stomach, she became surprised.
Instantly, she felt the wounds on her body heat up. And she became really surprised in the next moment.
The bruises she had until earlier completely disappeared. Even the scratches that felt hot, and the sprains as well.
The pain of her body completely disappeared.
“Is this……A healing potion?”
She knew about magic potions that instantly healed a person. But what she knew was only the name and effect. As knowing how to handle money was not required by adventurers, she had neither used nor thought about it. What the heck was that man who would simply give such a thing?
While the woman was bewildered, she was lost as to whether to speak to the man. However, when she saw the back of the man and felt that it had become an impenetrable wall, she closed her mouth.
She had thought that she needed to rest to let her body heal, but fortunately she could move immediately. Anyway she should do as this man said and wash off the smell of medicine. If she did not, the man might get angry at her.
While imagining what would happen if she angered him, she shivered.
“I’ll go wash my body.”
With a voice that would not anger him, she took out a towel from her chest, along with other things that she needed for changing.
The woman breathed a sigh of relief when she left the room. While thinking why would a man that would willingly give out potions be in the worst class inn.
Hanging a guild card that proved that one was a guild member should be the norm in the bar. However, there were many adventurers that hung their card while in their room to identify the strong ones.
The man earlier did not hang it. And so his rank was unclear.
A human that would willingly give away that sort of potion. At least D Rank, no, maybe even C Rank. Would a B Rank even be living in this sort of place?
“Why, am I sharing a room with that guy?”
While rank was not everything, sharing a room with a person that was a higher rank that herself weighed on her.
The woman breathed a deep sigh.