|Author: Kaburagi Haruka||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2579 characters|
|Translator: Mui||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1121 words|
The guarding continued without any problems even after that.
Though some wild animals attacked them on the way, they were practically no match for Cloud and Michelle. Each time it happened, the scarred merchant couldn’t hide his astonishment at Michelle’s skill.
Then, when the morning of the third day came, they finally returned back to Methuselah.
“That went really well. I would love to depend on you two next time too.”
“We will also be doing the same.”
Cloud had grown quite close to the Merchant during the journey too, so they were on good enough terms to talk casually now.
Michelle on the other hand was full of curiosity when she first visited the new city and had her eyes peeled on the street stalls all the time. Cloud had to peel her off the stalls whenever she fixated on one and wouldn’t move.
“Well then, I will send the payment to the Guild later, so you can receive it there.”
“Oh wait, your work still continues until we unload the luggage, you know?”
“I know, I know.”
The ordered goods were masks with fine stitches that were made in the Matara kingdom in the east. It was originally used to protect the wearer from the mineral dust in coal mines and such, so their masking potency was far higher than those made in Raum.
And there were about 2000 of those here now. It was quite a big order even from his experience as a Merchant.
“Sorry about that. I would’ve given you a breather, but these are special orders and are packaged individually. Due to that, their volume is larger.”
“It’s just cloth, in the end, so it should be light. I’m a power-type even if I don’t look it.”
“Glad to hear it then.”
Cloud was in fact unbelievably strong in contrast to what his thin body suggested. It was due to all the training and battles he had gone through since he was a child that he managed to gain that strength.
“Once we’re done with the unloading, let me treat you to a drink as an apology. You guys should come join us too.”
He also called out to the laborers who were on standby. Their expressions brightened up when they heard they’d be getting free drinks.
“Okay then, let’s head to the warehouse. It’s the third one in the south.”
“Huh, we’re not gonna eat first?”
“Michelle, I’ll treat you to some later.”
“Really? I’m gonna believe you, okay?”
Cloud pulled regretful-looking Michelle along and they headed to the warehouse. Michelle wasn’t as thoughtless as to eat during work either, so she decided to behave herself.
“Hahaha, then I’ll let you have your fill once the work is over!”
“Seriously, don’t do that!”
Cloud, who knew how big her appetite was, was desperately trying to stop the merchant from something so reckless. The merchant looked puzzled, not understanding the reason behind it. Thus, they headed to the warehouse in such a boisterous mood.
Come night, the merchant treated them to a meal as he promised. Seeing Michelle’s unrestrained appetite made him stare wide-eyed at her gluttony. Cloud had a somewhat apologetic expression as he drank his alcohol.
He had no more intention to stop Michelle’s rampage.
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“Oh my… you sure can eat.”
“That’s been my selling point since I was a kid.”
“So many people were brought to tears, deceived by her appearance.”
“Hmph, I haven’t deceived anyone.”
Michelle’s body itself was slender. Her shoulders and limbs looked healthy, but with no needless flesh. Setting her chest aside. Deceived by that, many men had invited her to eat with ulterior motives, but her appetite had thoroughly ruined their wallets.
The merchant’s name was about to be added to the list of such victims.
“Sorry about that. We’re the only ones eating here.”
“No worries. We’re getting free drinks here too.”
Cloud apologized to the laborer men. They were sitting at the same table and enjoying drinks, but the food on the table mostly disappeared into Michelle’s belly, so he apologized for that.
They didn’t seem to have minded that, so he felt relieved and returned back to eating. Still, he didn’t remove his eyes from monitoring their hands. It was because he had seen many people aiming at Michelle that tried to drug her. They seemed to have noticed his gaze and were somewhat nervous too.
“I feel like you’re giving us a strange gaze…”
“Oh, sorry. It’s just my habit. I mean, I have her with me, after all.”
“I see. I suppose you have endless worries.”
“Sorry if I ruined your mood.”
“No, no, I understand what you mean.”
Setting Michelle’s body aside, even her looks were charming and gave off a naive impression. If Nicole had the beauty of a noblewoman, Michelle gave off a relaxed feeling of a village girl.
If you asked which one was easier to call out to, the scales would be overwhelmingly tilted towards Michelle. For that reason, there was no end to men making extreme approaches at her.
It got late as they continued their chat, and eventually, one of the laborers left his seat.
“Sorry, I’ll hit the bathroom for a bit.”
“Okay. Make it quick.
He raised his hand in response and casually disappeared deeper into the store. The bathroom was installed next to the kitchen. It was because the staff frequently used it too.
Eventually, new food was carried to the table, and Michelle immediately reached out for a piece of deep-fried food. The merchant also reached with his fork in vigor.
Cloud gazed at that scene while carrying the mug to his mouth, but he noticed it was empty. He noticed the men around were low on it too, so he ordered more alcohol. The man who went to the bathroom also returned. He also brought the ordered alcohol.
“I brought it with me while I was at it.”
“Oh, thanks for that.”
The staff probably gave it to him when he was returning from the bathroom. He received the mug from the men and carried it to his mouth.
After a while, he felt his gaze shake.
Feeling the unnatural dizziness, he quickly looked towards Michelle, and saw she was plopped on the table as if she was dead drunk.
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“What. She shouldn’t…have been…drinking…”
Michelle barely touched alcohol normally. She was focused on food this time too and wasn’t drinking. Cloud was also paying attention to it when they were with other men too.
Looking again, the merchant was similarly dead drunk.
“No, looks like…we were drugged, huh…”
Just before he blacked out, Cloud saw the men grinning at him.