"So, how'd you like it. It may be an open establishment. But the food here's pretty good. With cheap booze to boot. And now, a toast. Jo Jood."
Lecan left all the ordering to Tolda and enjoyed whatever came his way.
"Ooh, this is really yummy."
"It is tasty. The flavor is very thick and yet there is no aftertaste."
Eda and Julius seemed to fancy the store too.
"Tolda. I didn't see a lot of Grace Gear in the wand store we visited today."
"That particular store sells the shopkeeper's handmade wands. Some stores do sell Grace Gear Wands, but the really good ones all get bought by the Magic Research Institute, so the Grace Gear you can buy in some random stores here are not really of high level ones."
"What's this Magic Research Institute gonna do buying all the Grace Gear Wands?"
"They research on them. And once they're done, they sell those back. A lot even sell modified ones. They're researching on all kind of Grace Gear, not just wands."
"Modified? Is it even possible to modify Grace Gear?"
"No, I don't think they fiddle with the inner working of Grace Gear. That would erase the Graces. That's not it, they combine multiple Grace Gear to add ancillary functions."
"Yeap. One example of this is <Necklace of Intuador>. It's a Grace Gear that automatically puts up an anti magic barrier, they combine it with a jewel that can relay mana from a magic stone into the necklace then sell the finished products. Without that, it'll take too long to restore mana."
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
In fact, a <Necklace of Intuador> is hanging on Lecan's neck right about now but it's not visible to Tolda.
"Now that you mention it, heard from a certain mage that it's odd how <Necklace of Intuador> could block offensive magic but not <Recovery>."
"Eh? You mean <Recovery> doesn't get blocked? No that can't be right. No magic can get past if you put that on."
"Hou. I was told that the necklace also has a function that lets its wearer supply mana to it."
"No no, that's not true at all. Maybe they're confusing it with another Grace Gear? Even just having <Necklace of Intuador> equipped makes it easier for its user to run out of mana. Most people don't have that large of mana pool after all. Getting its wearer to supply mana to it is like putting the cart before the horse."
(Yeah, somethings' off.)
(Perhaps the necklace I got.)
(Is a special one.)
"Can you buy <Necklaces of Intuador> at the equipment store you showed us earlier."
"No. You can only find those at the direct order store. By the way, Lecan. Mind if I ask you some questions myself?"
"Yours and Eda's <Free Box> seem to have unusually large capacities, where did you get them? Even the low capacity <Free Boxes> are only sold at the direct order store. And such large capacity boxes could only be bought by senior researchers of Magic Research Institute. It's been bugging me, you see."
"Hm? So you can buy those low capacity <Free Box> even if you're not some senior researcher thing then?"
"You can. However those low capacity boxes don't get called <Free Box>. Hence it's become common knowledge that only senior researchers can buy <Free Box>."
"I see. Some sort of open secret huh. Eda's <Free Box> was a belonging of a noble by name Solusgia Indole. I beat the guy in a duel and made the box my property as the reward."
"Indole? Sounds kind of familiar."
"He's the eldest son of Marquis of Gido."
"Ah, I see now. Marquis of Gido could likely buy one. They've been making business deals with that region after all. Hold it. You can't be telling me that eldest son fought in the duel himself."
"In the flesh."
"You really do the unbelievable, don't you. And you must have gone and beat the living out of the poor chap."
"Well, yeah close enough. By the way, your <Free Box> seems quite large itself. Are you a senior researcher at the institute?"
<Kwantor> members would go and gather magic wolves fur during their expedition. As it doesn't protect against physical attacks, it's good as raw material for anti-magic protectors, so it can be sold at high price. But as Lecan hurried them up, they couldn't skin the wolves whole, they would instead carve the part around the magic stone and took it whole along with the flesh. Doing so allowed them to get both fur, and magic stone. Those magic stone and flesh-attached fur portions were all handed to Tolda. That wouldn't be possible without a large box.
"No, not me. The shopkeeper at that wand store is a former senior researcher. I was given my <Free Box> by Guide Jiza."
"There was this one time when Guide Jiza came up with a project to improve <Magic Arrow Pipes>. She requested my assistance then. And as a reward, I got this <Free Box>."
<Magic Arrow Pipes> were invented by Guide Jiza in her younger days. She must have thought up points of improvements later in her life. But considering how there are supposed to be many other <Magic Arrow Pipe> stores around, Guide Jiza picking Tolda must be a testament to Tolda's status as the best craftsman in this town.
"Can anyone enter this direct order store and buy stuff there?"
"No. You can't get in that area without a pass. But I'm sure you can get one from Guide Jiza if you just ask her."
Lecan is interested in that direct order store thing, but not enough to get himself inside a place with such a stringent magical defensive system.