|Author: Kobayashi Homare||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2046 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 978 words|
“I’m sorry, but I’m tired from walking all the way here, so I won’t go back.”
“It seems you really are deaf or something huh. Everyone!”
With a signal, all the men stood up and surrounded me. The man behind the bar also took out a club and held it ready in his hands. I just sighed without thinking much of it, the dangerous side of town was always too predictable.
“What do you intend to do? You realize I’ll return violence in like if you chose that, right?”
They all began swinging their weapons at me. Usually in such situations I would quickly render them unconscious, but I still wanted to talk with them, so I decided to take the hits.
I felt the weapons hitting all over my body producing dull sounds. Most of them were focused on my arms and back, but my armor blocked most of it, not even a scratch reaching me. I expected as much from my armor, since it was not only well built, but I was also strengthening it with magic. The cheap weapons carried by the city’s goons felt like nothing more than pillows and bug swatters. They did not seem intent on actually killing me, all focusing their attacks on non-vital spots, but it still did not feel nice.
“W-what’s wrong with this guy?!”
“Why’s he still standing?!”
“Let’s try again!”
At least they seemed to notice I had taken zero damage as I still stood up, but they decided to go for another round of hits, I was not nice enough to let that happen though. First I stopped the guy who looked like their leader, breaking his sword with my fist before punching him and throwing him back. Then as the rest watched dumbfounded, I punched them once making them collapse on the floor.
Only the man behind the bar was left. I took his club, without resistance, and smashed it in my hands. That was enough to make his knees give in.
“Can I stay now? Or do I have to rough you up a little more?”
“N-no need for that…you can stay for as long as you’d like.”
“I see. But first…”
The other men were still wringing in pain on the floor, so I placed my hand on their wounds and instantly healed them. All of them stared wide eyed experiencing healing magic for the first time in their lives.
“It shouldn’t hurt anymore now. And sir, how much is the rent?”
“Ah, err…well, it’s two copper coins for a night-”
One of the men I had just healed interrupted him. It was the one who looked like their leader, prostrated down with his palms on the floor while looking at me.
“What is it?”
“I’m sorry for just now, I really am! I want to explain my actions though, maybe someone strong like you can help.”
Maybe they were not this violent normally, so I was curious to hear what had changed. I decided to let him talk.
“If you had a reason, then I’d like to know it. Shopkeeper, bring all of us something to drink too.”
I took out a silver coin and flicked it across the bar where the man danced a bit trying to catch it. After that I helped the men stand up and sat us all around one of the tables. The cheap chair creaked as it struggled to support my heavy armor, and I took off my helmet and placed it on the table.
“Ah…you were a woman?!”
“And a really cute one…”
“You even look like a child…ah, sorry, I didn’t mean that.”
The man who called me a child quickly apologized and shut up, after I glared at him. Then the drinks came, I took a sip and almost spit it out instantly.
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(What’s this? It’s disgusting! Could it be some sort of poison?!)
I would have never expected getting poisoned after all that. Had the shopkeeper pretended to be afraid? I was starting to feel like an idiot for lowering my guard, but then I thought about it again. Somehow the other men were happily drinking the same stuff, and they were doing fine. I was shocked at how much they seemed to appreciate the mysterious liquid, but I forced myself to finish my cup too.
“This is my first time having this…what is it?”
Apparently my face looked terrible, which they could not comprehend. They had no issue drinking the thing.
“What you say…this is wine! You’ve never had it before?”
“Wine? This is?!”
I put my nose onto the cup in disbelief. No matter how I tasted it or smelled it, it just felt like diluted sewer water to me. But if the people here thought this was wine, I did not want to imagine what their regular food was like. I felt like all of us would be better off if I stopped talking about that though, so I decided to see if the man wanted to talk about his story again. He placed his cup on the table and readjusted his posture.
“First of all, thanks for taking the time to listen to me. I’m Bacchus, the guy watching out for the poor b̲a̲s̲t̲a̲r̲d̲s̲ living around here.”
So he was basically the leader of the goons of this part of the city. He did not seem very strong to me, so he was probably more of a leader than simply someone who ruled through brute strength.
“I’ve seen how strong you are first hand, so I know you can help us get rid of some a̲s̲s̲h̲o̲l̲e̲s̲ who’re hiding behind hostages trying to manipulate us.”
I knew of another identical situation somewhere nearby, so hearing that made me drop my cup without thinking.