Intermission: The Melancholy of Zajir
"You idiot! Put yer' back into it if you want to use the phase hammer!"
The master's fists roar again today.
I've been under master's care for 30 years now, but I still can't use the phase hammer to his satisfaction. Even among master's personal pupils, the only two who could wield the great hammer are only me and Garir. After that, I just have to become able to swing it properly. I'll show that I'd be able to do it in 10, no 5 years. And then, someday I'll build a family (shotai) with Jojori.
"Zajir-san, what's wrong with true character (shoutai)?"
"Jojori huh, nothing, just something trivial."
"Is that so? We have a guest for grandfather, is he in the hall?"
"Yeah, he's in a bad mood, so take care."
"I understand, thank you."
She's lovely today too.
She answers properly even though I act brusque. Truly a nice woman.
The guest that Jojori mentions is a humankin Kozou (youngster). I don't really know humankin age, but he's probably just at coming of age.
However, master tells the youngster to try and make a sword. Moreover, not with iron but mithril? What a waste.
There's a failed mithril from that idiot Rodar's failure earlier, I guess I'll bring that. An amateur probably won't know the difference anyway.
"Yes, thank you very much. This is the first time I'm blacksmithing with a mithril, I feel nervous."
It looks like he has experience of making an iron sword, he's probably not a total amateur, but the ones here are all tempered warriors, even the lowest seat, Rodar, has been making sword for 50 years. It'll be pitiful to compare him with them. Master is cruel for letting this.
The motion of Kozou who smoothly put fire in the furnace slightly catches my attention when I see it. Is this guy really an amateur?
That small doubt becomes conviction when I see Kozou holds the mallet.
That unwavering stance.
He looks like master.
That impression isn't wrong.
Kozou looks puzzled as soon as he strikes with he mallet. Did he notice that slight difference? He could discern failed mithril even though it's the first time he hit one.
The master's fist drops on me for the mithril thing, but such thing doesn't matter. If I give this guy the best mithril, what kind of sword will he make? It's been awhile since my heart boils.
I run to the mithril refinement furnace before master and the others.
I've entrusted it to Rodar. This time, I'll prepare the best mithril myself.
"Yer' bastards! Get fired up!"
I motivate them with rough words but the refinement furnace's guys keep lying on the floor.
"Zajir-san, today, the gnomes aren't here. Because of that there's not enough magic power."
"Spirit! If you just put your spirit, anything can be done."
"Please don't say unresonable things. Then, Zajir-san, please pour your magic power. With spirit!"
That Ganza has also gone to the meeting with the gnomes huh. That's why the mithril today come out bad huh. It's not because of Rodar being careless in his supervision. I'll treat him to a liquor next time.
I try to pour my magic power, but it's not something that an inexperienced person can do. I can only pour around 0.5%. Seems that I'm bad with putting magic power into magic tools.
"It's fine to put magic power into this right."
Looks like Kozou is filling magic power as ordered by master. Judging from the short cane on his waist, he probably can use magic, but the furnace is an equipment that's normally filled by 10 gnomes magic power. It's not something that one person can somehow do, I've experienced it myself just now.
And yet, that guy has accomplished it alone.
The head of the refinement group is surprised to the point that his jaw looks as if dislocated, but I can't say that I don't understand his feeling.
Master is checking the finished mithril with examination apparatus. I know by just seeing it. That's a first-class one. In addition, extremely so. This is the first time I see master especially uses examination apparatus.
Ordered by master, I bring out a great hammer made of mithril alloy from the warehouse. It's far heavier than the usual phase hammer. Unbelievably, master tells Kozou to swing this great hammer.
Telling non-dwarves to swing the great hammer?
Garir and me express our opinions to master, but we only gets dropped fists. I can't go against master's decision.
Kozou who has been asked to swing the great hammer by master also becomes dumbfounded when he's in front of the great hammer.
No wonder. It's not something that a thin humankin kid can lift. When I show him how I hold it with one arm, he's greatly surprised. Kozou admiring me makes me ticklish. We're in front of Jojori. Say more.
"Oops-a-daisy. It's really heavy after all. I can't stabilize my shaking body."
When I look back, Kozou is lifting and practice-swinging the great hammer.
Idiotic. The weight is not something a humankin can stand--that's what should have been....
He's staggering, but he's certainly lifted it. Garir and me can lift it since we have herculean strength skill, but even for the dwarves in this room, only half of them can do it. Who the heck is he really.
"Zajir, go call Ganza."
Master shouts while holding the secret medicine pot on one hand. When I tell master that Ganza is visiting his home and not here, master shouts in angry voice enough to fill the whole room while boiling in anger.
I'm almost given an errand to go to the gnome's hometown, but I get out of the hardship since Kozou can do compounding. What a versatile guy.
Later, Ganza asks me the name of the one who's done the compounding, but since I always call him Kozou, I tell Ganza, "Don't know", and he gets really depressed. He must be dissatisfied for having the compounding equipments used by other people. He shuts up when I says to go tell master if he has complaints.
I burn into my eyes the figures of master and Kozou forging the sword. They could be called twin existences, they match their breaths perfectly. Unbelievably, Kozou swings that great hammer for all night long without uttering even a whine. I can't let a humankin even touches the great hammer, but I allow it if it's this guy. My colleagues have the same opinion too.
The sword that Kozou swings is beautiful.
I will forge a sword exceeding that one someday. It's unreachable for the me now, but I'll show that I will surely reach it after several dozens of years.
Later, liquor from Kozou for master has arrived.
He's sent it with the barrels altogether, he sure knows dwarves. He's a heavy drinker that beat master and me in drinking bout back then after all. I'd like to drink together again someday.
"Yo, Zajir. Is Dohar-shi around?"
I hear voice of a delicate man with an attitude. It's the eccentric Galhar who's opened a magic shop in the city above ground.
"Fun, there's no reason for you to not use honorifics for me. Call me Zajir-sama."
"Now now, Zajir-san. Don't talk like that to a childhood friend even as a joke."
The lovely Jojori shows her face behind Galhar. Childhood friend is a story of 30 years ago. It's a thing from several dozens years ago.
"Jojori, it's just like a child wanting to be glorified."
"Alright, I accept that challenge!"
I roll up my sleeves and am going to hit Galhar, but Jojori stop it with her body. Why, are you an ally of Galhar. She calls Galhar without honorific even though she uses "san" with me.
"Galhar, you too stop talking with biting words. Please get along."
"I know, Jojori."
Even though I get scolded by Jojori, when I see Galhar who's red like an octopus, I become wanting to hit him once.
"Wait Zajir-san, please don't use violence."
Dang, I unintentionally hit him.
My quarrel with Galhar continues until master comes back from a meal.
"What's this commotion. Do it outside if you want to make noise."
"F, forgivme, master."
Fufun, he's been hit too many, he can't talk well. Serves you right.
"Wer' just playing arnd."
I just have a slight difficulty of talking today. It might even rain later.
Thanks to Jojori-san who calls Don Haan siblings to cure us, both of us can talk now.
Galhar who rarely comes to the underground has come to invite us-which surprisingly include me too--to drink the liquor together-. He should have said so from the beginning. People who brings liquor with him is never bad people.
"This light green liquor is delicious."
"This crimson liquor is also sweetly easy to drink."
We can't have a banquet with just the shares that Galhar brings, so we take out the liquor barrels that Kozou has given to master.
As I'm told, it seems that the liquor Galhar brings is also from Kozou.
"Several barrels of liquor came together with a letter of gratitude. In the letter, along with gratitudes, he says that he's escaped death thanks to the goods that he's bought from me. I've opened the magic shop for 20 years, but this is the first time I've been thanked to this degree."
I heard that Galhar was forced to buy trash-like things when he went to the humankin city, but it seems he's doing a good work.
"Galhar, don't forget the feeling now. If you do that, you'll become the best dwarf magic merchant."
"That's right, Galhar. The best of gnome are Han and me though."
"That is so, Galhar. Aim to become the best among the dwarves. You'll always be second in this city though."
Even though master specially gives a good word to Galhar, the Don Haan siblings mix in.
It seems master has approved him, but I won't hand Jojori over. While battling for Jojori's line of sight from across, we gulp down the liquor
cups at the same time.
A good liquor with a nice woman, and a nice rival (friend), is good.
Next time, I want to have a banquet together with Kozou.