|Author: Ryuusen Hirotsugu||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 3686 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1715 words|
Feeling the kind and pure gaze of that crossdressing woman, Mira hastily looked away from her chest, trying to come up with an excuse and claim to be innocent.
「I see. You’re an adventurer too then, I take it? I guess this means this is your first time in this city too. This place has some slightly bizarre customs, so I don’t blame you.」
Thanks to Mira’s appearance as a young and cute girl, the crossdressing woman did not notice her gaze. The woman used an increasingly soft voice to explain the difference between Gran Rings and other cities commonly visited by adventurers.
It was common for the Union to be located in the commercial districts, for convenience’s sake.
But Gran Rings was a city with a long and rich history, and the commercial district was filled with many well-established shops and businesses, making it impossible for the Union to secure a suitable plot of land.
So in the end they had to make do with an old party hall in the district where many residences and institutions were located, and build the Union there.
「But well, at the end of the day there’s still this much traffic around the Union. Maybe it’s for the better this way, keeping the commercial district less congested.」
The crossdressing woman ended her explanation with that quip, trying to sound cool. But her femininity showed through too much, making it look more cute than anything.
After that, Mira asked where the commercial district was located, and parted ways with the crossdressing woman. Soon after Mira turned around and noticed a familiar emblem.
「Oh, she was one of Sero’s comrades… That explains her friendliness.」
An emblem showing a scarlet bell, which belonged to the guild Écarlate Carillon, led by a former player named Sero. That was etched onto the back of the woman’s coat.
(I’ll have to tell Sero to give her my thanks for helping me next time we see each other… Hmm… she was like a Takarazuka1 girl, where every character was embodied by a female actress, including the men.)
Thinking that, Mira headed in the direction she was pointed at, and safely arrived at the commercial district.
Gran Rings’ commercial district was full of life, not unlike Sentopolly’s market or Roseline, which was a trading country. All the buildings had an air of history to them, but there was no end to the lively voices from the people filling the streets.
Many of them were adventurers, visiting armories and potion stores, and the stores specializing in items for adventurers were especially crowded.
(I’m really curious about this place, but food is more important.)
The Dinowal Store’s branch in Gran Rings had a large sign reading ‘New Arrivals!’ on its entrance, but Mira had to keep grounded on reality.
She was planning on going to the Ancient Underground City dungeon the next day, which was so large and difficult that even skilled adventurers could take an entire month in clearing. There was no way of knowing whether Soul Howl was still somewhere inside there, and Mira could not just search for one day or two before coming back out, she had to be ready to spend at least two weeks inside.
The biggest hurdle would be food and provisions. Protein could be procured from monster meat, as long as she ignored the taste, but vitamins and nutrients from vegetables were trickier to obtain.
No sunlight reached inside the Ancient Underground City, so plants could not grow, limiting the resources that could be gathered in there. Without food, it was impossible to search the dungeon.
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Mira had been absorbed in reading the Encyclopedia of Skills she obtained from Luminaria, focusing mainly on the things that had changed between now and when it was still a game. She noticed many advancements had focused on food, which also made her realize how important stocking up was before heading into the Ancient Underground City. She could no longer leave the dungeon whenever she pleased.
「I need to buy enough to last a few weeks!」
The Ancient Underground City was a popular dungeon amongst adventurers. Rather than trying to rely on whatever little resources were left by others, it was much safer to stock up on food beforehand.
On top of that, she had her Item Box, which she could not find the limits of yet, unlike the Operator’s Bracelet most high level adventurers used.
Mira looked around at the commercial district while almost hopping as she walked, searching for food in a good mood. Part of that was that one adventurer item she bought in Sentopolly, the cooking set.
Being able to use a new tool for the first time was always exciting. Mira was like that as well, already imagining how she would use the set as she stood in front of one shop.
There she observed the large selection of colorful fruits and vegetables.
「I’ll take a pile of everything!」 She eventually declared.
「That could get heavy, is it alright?」 The shop owner turned around surprised, and looked at Mira’s small frame with a bit of worry. But Mira turned her arm and pointed at her bracelet, answering, 「Don’t worry.」
「Ohh, an adventurer. I thought you were just running errands.」
Mira’s bracelet was actually far better than those high level adventurers used, but it looked identical to an Operator’s Bracelet. The shop owner sounded impressed seeing it, then gathered a pile of everything he had. Meanwhile Mira was already planning how to use them, what she would make last for two weeks, what she wanted more and finish in four days, and so on.
「Well, be careful out there.」
After counting the money, the shop owner said that before hurrying to serve his other clients. In total she had bought around thirty kilograms worth of ingredients, and each pile had cost around 50’000 Rils.
(So this usually would only last a week, which I doubt would be enough for the entire search. But I’ll be alright!)
The shop owner had given her a timeframe by when the food would still be safe to eat, but that was not an issue for Mira. Unlike the Operator’s Bracelet used by adventurers, the Item Box of former players still worked like in the game, preserving everything the way it was stored.
In other words, Mira could stuff it full of food and it would never get spoiled. Solomon even told tales of former players that would take fresh seafood to secluded mountains and made a fortune that way. The taste was preserved even better than frozen items, which made it especially requested in noble or rich households. It was a simple yet effective way of earning money.
(Though I bought everything on impulse, there’s a lot I don’t know how to prepare.)
Mira looked at the various types of fruits and vegetables she bought as she stashed them in her Item Box. Some were identical to those she knew from her past world, but there were many she had never seen before.
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She could always look for a cooking book later, or use the all-mighty method of making a stew. Once she finished storing everything in her Item Box, Mira crossed the street to a butcher’s shop on the other side.
There she found all the common types of meat, beef, pork and poultry, but also rabbit, sheep, goat, horse, deer, frog, and even snake meat. She even saw more fantastical creatures that looked like pterosaurs.
Mira joined the crowd of people seeking meat there, and looked at the available selection, deciding she would eat anything except rabbit, since it reminded her of her cute Luna.
Everything else was fair game.
「Please give me two kilos of each of these!」
Mira made special emphasis on avoiding rabbit, while pointing mainly at beef, pork, poultry, and anything else she thought looked appetizing.
「Here you go, thank you for coming by! Stocking up on supplies sounds quite the hard job.」
The lady behind the counter, who had a somewhat aloof and carefree voice, smiled as she looked at Mira’s bracelet. But contrary to her voice, her hands moved rapidly to complete Mira’s order, wrapping all the meat in a deep green paper.
「What is that paper? It smells rather pleasant.」
A sweet herbal scent wafted from the deep green paper she used to wrap the meat. It appeared to be more than just mere packaging.
「Oh, this? It’s paper soaked in the sap of medicinal herbs, it absorbs any bad odor right away, and keeps the meat fresh for longer. The owner said it’s also pretty cheap. Most shops like ours use it nowadays.」
「Oh, so that scent came from medicinal herbs, I see.」
While it took some effort to produce that paper, it could be made at such a large volume that prices were low. That’s quite a convenient item, thought Mira as she watched the packed meat pieces piled one over the other.
That paper was called Preservative Paper, and had been invented by former players.
「Come back again soon~」
The lady counted the money and waved her hand with a smile. But right away another client called her, and she let out a languid 「Going~」 as she continued working.
(I think this should last a month at least.)
The beef, pork, and poultry she bought was all familiar to her, having ordered mainly sirloin, ribs, and thighs, most of the pieces as thick as possible, weighing around two kilograms each. Then she added some sheep, deer, and that pterosaur-looking thing too. She selected a mix of red and white meat.
In total everything weighed around 35 kilograms, costing 150’000 Rils. Together with the vegetables and fruit she had spent 200’000 Rils. That was a fifth of the funds Solomon had prepared for her, but Mira was not quite satisfied yet.
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Mira started getting in a good mood and grinned as she stored the meat inside her Item Box. It was a similar sensation to packing for a long and distant trip. Once she was done storing everything, she continued wandering around the streets, looking for more ingredients to buy.