|Author: Ryuusen Hirotsugu||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 3999 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1872 words|
「Hmm… I heard they moved him somewhere, but I wasn’t told where. You see, we’re only told the bare minimum for each of our departments, and I’m not in charge of watching over people like him. So I really don’t know much, seriously.」
「I see, but you know what will happen if you lie or try to trick me, yes?」
「Yeah, of course. I’m fully aware. I’m just the deputy head of the Development Department, I never get told what those above me are up to behind the scenes.」
「Hmm… alright then.」
He did not seem to be acting. There was no concrete proof, but that was Mira’s intuition, so she decided to move onto the next question.
「Then, do you know where Chimera Clauzen’s big boss is hidden?」
Big boss, Isaac interpreted that as her asking where their main base was.
「Ah… I’m sorry, I wasn’t told that either. And just in case, I swear I’m telling the truth. You’ve seen how they want to get rid of me already, so I have no reason to hide anything.」
His shoulders dropped slightly as he explained himself.
「Somehow I feel like I caught someone in a far lower position than I thought…」
「Throw me a bone, will you… Deputies like me are switched out more often than they change their underwear by those big wigs in the main base.」
He had a somewhat sullen look as he spoke, before adding 「Though well, I don’t know how useful this will be,」 as a prelude to his mutterings about everything he knew about the main base.
Isaac spoke of something his direct superior, Zele Schedar, had told him.
First, the base is really large, but it is hidden somewhere that can’t be found through regular means, and they stored all the captured spirits and spirit arms in there. The location and method of entry was reserved for those in higher positions or with confidential secret missions.
「And then there’s guys like the one over there…」
Getting to that point, Isaac looked at the restrained man that was being carried by the Holy Knight. His personal feelings seemed to surface as he spoke.
He was part of the Deserter Hunters, a special group of highly skilled members inside of Chimera Clauzen that would assassinate anyone who was compromised. The higher heads would simply design who they deemed disadvantageous to keep alive, and they took care of it.
The one they encountered earlier had seen a member get captured by their enemy, so he proceeded to attempt killing Isaac. It was also then that Isaac confessed that seeing one of the Deserter Hunters get overpowered so easily was the main reason why he was so cooperative now.
The moment he became a target, there was no place for him in Chimera anymore. If they saw him, he would get killed. So he decided to at least become a source of information worth keeping alive, so the Fifty Bells would shield him from more pursuers. That concluded everything Isaac had to say.
「I see, I was starting to wonder why you were talking so much.」
「Yeah, I don’t really have any other options left.」
There was no proof he was saying the truth or not, but Mira felt like he was being sincere. Though she did not necessarily trust him.
「Ah right, I’m pretty sure that Deserter Hunter should know where the main base is. Though considering how much they’re trusted, I doubt it’ll be easy to make him speak.」
The memory of the man attempting to take his life still in his mind, Isaac glared at the restrained man.
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「Ohh, interesting. He pretty much flew into my hands like a moth attracted to fire, huh.」
「You were lucky he decided to come out in the first place.」
Mira was very happy hearing that one of the handful of people who knew the location of the main base had approached them. Her face had brightened up considerably, realizing she also had Isaac on her side, though he only did that to save his own life.
「By the way, there’s something else I’m curious about.」
Mira squatted down in front of Isaac, having remembered something.
「You first called yourself uhh… Sentopolly’s foreign trade something something Layton, yes? Are you also involved with this country’s politics?」
She asked something she had been interested in. The correct title was Sentopolly’s minister of foreign trade, Layton Nox. While it was a fake name, if he actually worked as minister until that guise, there could be many issues down the line. That would mean Chimera Clauzen had already infiltrated governments.
「Ah, you heard me say that to the wacko earlier? I guess it makes sense if you arrived around that time.」
Seeing he could not hide anything, Isaac revealed even more internal details. He did work with the government. All of the people with the most authority in Sentopolly were part of Chimera Clauzen, as well as around half of those with intermediate power.
Not only that, but Sentopolly itself had been a country built by Chimera Clauzen. Isaac had joined them at a later date so he did not know all the details, but from what was told, Chimera Clauzen had abused the power of spirits to terraform a portion of the wastelands into a place where humans could live.
As more people moved in there and trade grew stronger, all the taxes and fees taken by the country were directly funneled into Chimera Clauzen’s coffers.
「In other words, this entire country is rotten to the core. Though man, I thought I worked well as Layton, and got pretty famous too. I really tried my best with that role.」
He laughed despite himself, a shadow growing over his face as he thought back about things.
「Ah right, there’s one more thing you should keep in mind for my safety. Wherever you decide to imprison me, avoid a place managed by the Union or a government at all costs.」
Just in case, Isaac raised his head and added that. He said it was for his safety, in other words, if he was placed in a facility owned by the Union or the state, his life would be in danger. That made sense, considering that most of the government was corrupted by Chimera Clauzen, if they saw Isaac brought to prison, they would certainly kill him.
「Hm, I get why you’d want to avoid state owned facilities, but why mention the Union as well? As far as I know, they are an independent organization, separated from the government.」
Mira was right, the United Adventurer’s Guild was a large independent organization that built branches in most large countries of the continent, all of which had to accept to never interfere with the Union’s work.
「It’s nothing complicated. There’s just many members of Chimera masquerading as Union workers.」
Shrugging a bit, Isaac explained his reasoning. Whether those workers were just Chimera’s spies or assassins, he would still be in danger. All of the other large associations and organizations in the city were in a similar situation.
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「At first sight I thought it was a dazzling and beautiful city, but you’re right, it’s rotten to the core.」
「In retrospect, I feel the same.」
The two had a vacant chuckle after saying that.
(Well, I ended up getting a bigger haul than I expected, but I don’t know what to do now.)
If the Deserter Hunter would keep his mouth shut, she decided it was best if a professional took care of interrogating him, so she would have to take the two men she captured back with her. But there was the danger it could end up similarly to how it went with Mylenne, so just to avoid such a situation, Mira decided to ask Isaac if he had any item that could be used to track him.
「Are there Magic Wares that can do that? But hmm… ah, there’s this weird plate we use as entrance passes for the diet building, maybe that could be one?」
「Hmm… that sounds suspicious, where is it now?」
「It should be inside a small case I keep hanging from my belt under my robe.」
Isaac turned his body in an exaggerated manner, saying 「It should be around there.」 At this point there was little reason for Isaac to plan something, but just in case Mira carefully began feeling around through the robe.
「Umm… how should I put this… that feels kinda funny.」
Seeing Mira, a young and cute girl groping his robe from so close, made Isaac speak his honest feelings.
「Get your mind off the gutter.」
Mira instantly punched him, leaving Isaac teary eyed as he realized she was far stronger than her appearance suggested.
「Hmm, is it this?」
Inside the small case, Mira found a plate inscribed with many weird patterns and symbols. Isaac looked at it and said 「Other than that, they only gave me weapons and armor.」
To be safe, Mira took the weird plate, Isaac’s short wand, his dagger, and all the spirit arms he had, and hid them on a nearby rock. She did not use her Item Box to store them since she still did not know how the tracking worked.
After that, Mira searched through the Deserter Hunter, finding a similar plate, which she bunched with his weapons and took them to another rock.
「The issue now is how to transport all of this.」
Mira looked at the two men she captured, wondering how and where she should take them.
The first option was to take them to their shelter in Irene, where Hebi could interrogate them further, but the distance was an issue. Walking with two restrained men would stand out regardless of the place though, so first she had to have Worthramble hide them.
That meant there were at least four of them, Mira, Worthramble, and the two men. The load would be too much for Pegasus to carry, even if she stayed behind and left them in Worthramble’s care. Garuda would be too big and stand out, the bond between Mira and Worthramble too weak to hide the large bird.
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(They’ve all grown so much too…)
Mira thought of her other summons that could fly, but they were not viable for the same reason.
「I guess I’ll just have to ask someone for help after all.」
After pondering about it for a long time, she finally decided this was not a task she could fulfill alone, and it was best if she went to consult with her friends. She had the Holy Knight carry the two men to the foot of a rocky hill, and left it as a guard there. Then he asked Worthramble to stay with them too, camouflaging them from vision.
They were in the shadow of a rock, and hidden from visibility by Worthramble. Unless someone specifically searched for them, no one would know they were there. Mira walked a distance away and looked back to make sure everything was arranged properly, then summoned Pegasus and rode back to Sentopolly.