|Author: Kobayashi Homare||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 1953 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 904 words|
Eventually, the little girl arrived in front of me. There were a few adventurers that tried to stop her mid-way, but other adventurers restrained them. I could not really turn her away until I knew what she wanted either, so I smiled in an attempt to make her feel at ease and spoke to her.
“Hello little lady, welcome to the adventurer’s guild. Can you tell me what you need?”
She looked really nervous so it was hard for her to find the correct words. Usually, it was creepy adventurers that acted that way, so I would tell them to hurry it up, but I did not mind waiting as long as necessary for a small girl like her.
“Umm…it’s my mommy. Can you help her?”
“Mommy got sick…and…”
She broke into tears before she could finish the sentence. It was so sudden the only way I knew to react was to run around the reception desk and hug her. The other adventurers around and even Camille were all at loss at what to do, since this was something that almost never happened inside the guild. Camille’s first thought was to take out some of the candy she had and offer it to her, while Miranda glared at the adventurers as if they had done something to the child, though that was obviously a false accusation… Eventually, the girl seemed to calm down, though her eyes were still teary as she looked at me.
“It’s okay. Can you tell me what happened? Or do you want to go inside? Maybe you’ll feel better there.”
I exchanged glances with Camille and Miranda before I took the girl’s hand and took her to the break room. She still looked nervous, but she followed along in silence. It was already past lunchtime, and there was no group scheduled to rest now, so the break room was empty. I took tea leaves someone had brought to work and prepared two cups for us, in an attempt to get her to calm down. She nodded as she took the cup from my hands and took a short sip before exhaling calmly.
“Do you feel better now?”
“Yes, thank you. Also, my name is Rina.”
“Oh…I’m Lapis, nice to meet you, Rina. So can you tell me how we can help you?”
She nodded and slowly began explaining what had happened. Rina was the only child in a small family who lived in one of the less inhabited and cared for corners of Surfour, basically the slums.
They had a humble but peaceful life, living day to day with the money her father, an adventurer, earned through his job. Eventually, all of that changed drastically with his passing, as they had no source of income anymore.
I could easily imagine what happened next. They went through their savings in a short time, and worried about how they would eat the next day, her sickly mother sought work, but she only lasted a few days. Some days ago she fell ill, and this morning she collapsed with a strong fever which left her bedridden.
Rina desperately sought help from her neighbors, but they all lived in similar conditions so the most they could provide was some scraps of food and advice. As her childish mind tried to find a way to help her mother, she recalled something her father used to say about the adventurers guild and the work of adventurers, describing it as people who worked to help others.
That made her think that if she paid enough money, someone there could help her sick mother, so she overcame her fears and came to the guild.
“I brought all the money I could find at home, is this enough?”
She carefully took out a few copper coins from her pocket, treating them as very valuable items. Her eyes seemed to tremble as she looked at me hesitantly, but I was nowhere mean enough to say it was not enough.
Usually, it was a priest’s job to heal the sick, temples to most gods accepting a sum of money to send a priest capable of using holy magic. But their prices were usually very expensive, only affordable to wealthy families. Someone like Rina who came from a family that struggled to find money for each day’s food had nowhere near enough money for that, so their only recourse were the adventurers. I gently patted Rina’s head and smiled trying to calm her down.
“That’s enough. I’ll make sure to heal your mother, so don’t worry.”
Her face brightened up in an instant. I was fairly confident that my magic would be enough to heal her mother. But I knew healing her would not be enough to fix all their problems, so now that I was getting involved with them I really wanted to do something so they could survive on their own in the future.
“Yes, I’ll charge you only one coin for that. Let’s hurry to your mom’s side now, okay? I’m sure she’ll feel safer if you’re back soon too.”
“Ah, thank you very much! I’ll take you there then! My house is this way!”
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She looked really willing to help her sick mother. I followed as she ran down the street, still mulling over how I could help them best.