10-11. The Value of Safe Return
Satou's here. In my primary school days during my visit to my grandfather's house, I took part searching a mountain where a neighbor middle school kid was believed to be spirited away. I can still remember the serious faces of the adults back then even now. That middle school kid seemed to have been playing in the city, and they scolded the kid harshly afterward.
"Should we head back immediately after we have renewed the inn booking?"
"We can't nanodesu!"
"Ara? Didn't you say 『I belong to the battlefields』?"
"Walking the horses~" "Nanodesu!"
"Eh~, they're just horses, we can just ask the inn caretaker to do that."
"No good no good~?"
"Arisa doesn't understand nodesu."
I take no notice to the little girls' conversation as my mind is occupied with the thing that's happening on the first hall just ahead the passage.
There are nearly 200 knights in full equipments like they're going on a march. I wonder if they're on a mission to save an important person? Since there are people like a foreign country prince and the youngster an earl house inside the labyrinth, their target might be among them.
Arisa who was running out of breath when she was descending this stair has become able to calmly climb it while conversing. Level ups are great after all.
We enter into the labyrinth gate that Pochi and Tama have opened, going outside of the labyrinth.
There, I see the face of someone whom I didn't expect to find here.
"Viscount Shimen! It has been a while."
"Ooh! Chevalier Pendragon, so you're safe!"
I can guess the current situation while being surprised by the calm older brother of Toruma who's suddenly hugged me. I affirmed that after hearing Toruma-brother's story.
It started from the rumor about some half-destroyed explorers who acquired ant nectar that he heard in a noble-only saloon when Toruma-brother was visiting the labyrinth city to get a hold of rare magic cores the day before yesterday.
When he asked about the detail, he heard that the explorers were saved by a black haired young noble who had an excellent mithril sword and brought along little beastkin girls, and a magic spear-user lizardkin girl, he seemed to have associated them to be about me.
Then, he asked the Explorer Guild about it just in case, and the fact that we had become explorers, went to the labyrinth and had not come back yet came to the light.
At first he requested the Explorer Guild rescue unit to be deployed, but since they persisted that they couldn't dispatch it before the scheduled date of our return had passed, it wasn't going well. Good going Explorer Guild. If they had dispatched yesterday, it would have made many things complicated.
Therefore, he directly talked to the General of Labyrinth Army, borrowed some elites to form a rescue unit, and asked some explorers to become the guide. The viscount himself wouldn't be going into the labyrinth of course, but he purposely came here since he's acquainted with the captain of the unit.
"I'm very sorry for making you worry."
"No, judging from your conditions, I've jumped to the wrong conclusion myself. I'm sorry for making this commotion."
"I already said right, against a magic warrior who can repulse a lower demon, even if the first four area monsters ganged up on him, they wouldn't even nick him."
The knight captain who's wearing a full body armor entered the conversation by saying so. This person seems to be a honorary viscount. Toruma-brother has come to an agreement to deliver some barrels of wine and five sheep to the soldier barrack. I will apologize to the General together with Toruma-brother tomorrow. He told me that I didn't have to go, but as an adult myself, I couldn't exactly say, "Oh is that so.".
The knights seem to be going to eliminate the lost thieves since they've made preparations and all. It's just right since the ones I've knocked down should be still there.
Toruma-brother seemed to be busy, he left a subordinate to deal with the trivial after promising about the tomorrow matter.
The subordinate-san is a 40 years old man with good physique. I wish it was a beautiful female secretary instead.
After parting with Toruma-brother, we go to the purchasing counter of the guild staffs before the labyrinth gate.
"Congratulations on your safe return."
I feel that there's something wrong with that, but since it seems like she's blessing me, I thank her.
"How was the result?"
"We've got magic cores, labyrinth ant's materials, and labyrinth frog's meat."
I take them out of the satchel. I purposely did it like this to leave an impression that we are in the possession of a magic bag <<Holding Bag>>. It's better than having them suspiciously think that we have Item Box.
I take out more than 100 magic cores, 10 of ant's breast shell, carapaces, and claws each, and 100 kilograms of labyrinth frog meat.
"T, that's a lot of magic cores."
Just as Arisa's expected, the face of the guild female receptionist is cramping. It seems to be within common sense as it's not enough to create a commotion.
I think it's actually unexceptional considering our levels, but maybe it's unprecedented for first-time explorers since the guild have onlye information about their names. I'm really glad that I've left the magic cores we've acquired from stronger monsters on the campground.
"Are these all Chevalier Pendragon-sama?"
"No, although I don't know if they have purchase request, I have the meat of strange yellow lizard."
I already knew that it had no purchase request, but since the meat is delicious, I've brought it to treat the children who are standing by here. There are only 20 kilograms of the meat, but it should be enough to treat them.
"Strange yellow lizard? Is it that legendary ingredients?!"
"Oy, Huey. Appraise this meat. It seems to be of the yellow strange lizard."
"Is that true. You've done well to defeat such fast running lizard."
Come to think of it, it was trying to run away from Tama's surprise attack, so I caught it with [Magic Hand]. I had thought that its price was too high, so it was a rare ingredient huh. I ask about the prices of the other things while they're appraising it.
The labyrinth frog meat is worth four copper coins a kilogram, so 100 kilograms are four gold coins.
The ant's breast shell is two silver coins, and the carapace is one silver coin. I think the carapace can be used for many things, is there a few demand for it? The ant's claw is quite cheap, 10 of them are one silver coin. It's two copper coins a piece.
"It's the strange yellow lizard without a doubt. It's 10 gold coins if you sell it to the guild. You can possibly sell it higher if you bring it to the city, but in that case, the tax for carrying out will be one gold coin."
I don't particularly need to pay the tax since it can be deducted from the materials and magic cores I'm selling it. Since the market price is 20 gold coins, it's more profitable to sell it in the city even if I have to pay the tax.
As for the magic cores, each one of the 103 magic cores of the labyrinth ants is one copper coin, the strange yellow lizard's core is one silver coin, and the labyrinth frog's core is two silver coins.
The staff-san teaches me how to break down the price of the magic cores.
"These lots of small magic cores are White 9 and Vermilion 1 so they're of the lowest grade. Please note that it's the lowest priced core since there is little use of this low-ranked magic core."
I asked her to teach me the detail of magic core grades.
It seems that the deeper the red color of the magic core is, the better.
There are four colors classifications which are White, Vermilion, Red and Crimson, [White 9 Vermilion 1] to [Vermilion 10] are the low grade, [Vermilion 9 Red 1] to [Red 10] are the intermediate grade, [Red 9 Crimson 1] to [Crimson 10] are the high grade, and above it is the highest grade, [Blood Crimson].
Since the level 30 frog is [White 7 Vermilion 3], while the level 15 lizard is [White 2 Vermilion 8], it doesn't seem that being higher leveled means that the magic core will be better. By the way, the whales' cores are Deep Crimson. I don't have any intention of selling it, but I'm slightly interested just how much is that giant magic core worth.
Since the price of the magic cores doesn't depend on quantity but its grade and weight, the staff-san politely measures it one by one while wiping them. There's a magic tool for this measurement, it calculates the price after you set the value standard on the ballast. It's quite an excellent thing.
However, she's implying that the [White 9 Vermilion 1] magic cores don't have any use, but I've used it normally for making diluted potions, I wonder if there are individual differences?
The guild staff breaks down the total and shows the written blackboard to me.
I've decreased the labyrinth meat I'm going to sell by 20 kilograms.
"Do you agree with this amount of money for the purchase?"
"Yes, good enough."
The deal has been made, and I receive the documents needed for us to rank up from Wood plates to the Bronze plates from the guild-san. Strangely, they don't check whether I'm carrying something out. I wonder if the checking is lax?
I got permission from the guild staffs to borrow the BBQ stove beside the counter. It seems that they're loaning the set and the fuel for one big copper coin.
"Noble-sama, so you're safe!"
The two people from the [Beautiful Wings] called and hugged me. The women seemed to have thought that we were defeated and abducted by the ants. Putting aside the muscle body of charming-san, the soft embrace of the beauty-san is very wonderful.
Since Lulu who's grilling some frog meat is looking here with a complex expression of surprise and reproach, I gently pull the two apart. Arisa and the others were busy ordering the children to line up, so they didn't notice it. It seems I've avoided the guilty festival.
"I'm glad that you two are also alright."
"It's thanks to noble-sama."
"We were really saved by you."
These girls seem to be the explorers who were going to guide the rescue unit. Apparently they received a fine for not only causing trouble for other explorers, but also the labyrinth army. The fine was expensive, so the prize money they got from the quest weren't enough. They were being vague about it, but they probably borrowed money to cover the deficiency.
The children who are treated with grilled meat on wooden skewers come to me to say their thanks, and then get back near the wall to enjoy the food. Arisa had specially told them that I was the one who treated them while she was distributing the meat. Everyone seems to be experienced from the food distribution at the duchy capital, the children line up while keeping the order.
The beastkin girls ate the little of meat that had remained. You girls, haven't you each just eaten 10 kilograms of the meat yesterday?