Back at their hideout, other former employees had gathered. Their faces lit up when they listened to Hotor's report.
"Hotor. Could you contact the atelier and ask for an artisan that can discern the vase? If we could prove that the vase belonged to our firm, we should be able to interrogate Hotan, no Keibun."
"Rintos-sama. We can get an artisan here. We can also prove the vase's origin. However, Hotan would likely feign ignorance on the vase being a stolen goods. At this stage, I believe getting more than that would be difficult. It would have been easier if only the items Hotan and Nuga presented to Rotor townlord were still here, but they are no longer in this town from what we know. We have not gathered enough proof yet."
"There must be something, anything we can do."
"You want to exact revenge, don't you."
"Is that for the sake of killing the mastermind behind the raid that massacred your father and employees with your own hands. Or is it to expose this mastermind's crime to the world, and to hand down punishment."
Rintos fell deep in thought for a while before speaking resolutely.
"If possible, I would like to swing the sword of justice with my own hands. But that will be my selfish desire, not the end goal of our struggle. My, no our objective is to make the violent crime perpetrated by the culprit be known to the world. And to have them pay for their sin. And for the gods to witness that it was the children and employees of Muzz of Septema Firm who brought down the hammer of justice upon them. That is precisely how my father's honor will be restored."
"I see. Then how about leaving it to me."
"It seems this Ceras guy is helping you in this matter, at least he's sympathetic enough to ask for a Vengeance Permit from Chada townlord. But what we need most right now is Rotor townlord's cooperation."
"W-well that may be true, but we have no connection whatsoever with Rotor townlord-sama."
"That's where I come in the picture."
"I understand that Lecan-sama is a high ranking adventurer who's also engaged to a high ranking noble lady. But Rotor townlord-sama is well known for his profit-driven thought process who's also hard to please and ask to cooperate."
"I'll take care of it."
"Why would you go so far?"
"Cause I want those gaiters you have. Those gaiters are objects of extreme worth to me. I absolutely must have them to get me, an adventurer, even stronger. Your father left you those. So just think of it as your father lending a helping hand."
"My, father, lending a helping hand. By leaving these gaiters on me."
Rintos closed both his eyes.
Tears fell down his cheeks.
Next to him, Maina covered her face with her hands. Tears fell down her eyes.
"We shall leave everything in your hands."
Rintos, Maina and the six former employees all bowed.
Afterward, Lecan discussed things together with Chaney. They had Nirfut go to the temple to check something who then went back with good news. Lecan had meal and returned to his inn in good mood.
The day after, Lecan went in Dungeon Rotor after breakfast, warped to the last floor and defeated the boss there, Petitfire Dragon. He put the magic stone and dragon materials in <Storage> and headed for the townlord's mansion. Chaney was already waiting at the front gate. Lecan and Chaney asked for an audience with the townlord. Luckily for them, the townlord was available at the time.
"I just beat Dungeon Rotor's boss for your sake."
"Besides half of the dragon's meat, I'm offering all the mats including the magic stone to you."
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
Lecan took the townlord to the courtyard and started taking dragon materials out of <Storage>.
The townlord dropped his jaw.
Lecan kept taking more and more dragon materials out.
The townlord's jaw kept getting lower instead of closing.
"A dragon, a whole dragon intact? Besides the missing meat and a clean cut on the neck, it's the whole thing here. I've never seen or heard anything like this."
"Half of the meat is yours. Turn the other half into preserved meat for me."
"To tell you the truth, I've still got another dragon's worth of mats."
"W-What did you say?! I see, so that was really your damn-no, your doing. Not just once, but twice."
"Sure was. And the other one is all Chaney's."
"I've left them under Chaney's care."
"Chaney. Naturally, you'd sell them to me, wouldn't you."
"M-milord. Of course I would."
"Oh today is truly a joyous day. Aah, oh great Elex!"
"Got one thing to ask you."
"I shall do anything in my power."
"Prepare this town's <Bell of Truth> to help Rintos's group, a merchant from Chada, interrogate Hotan, a merchant from this town. We've confirmed that the bell hasn't been used in the past year yet. Also, dispatch your trusted representative there. Hotan aka Keibun might be a major criminal depending on the result. That'll be your job as this town's lord to administer justice."
Chaney explained the circumstance to the bewildered townlord.
Afterward, things simply flowed like surging waves.
The <Bell of Truth> revealed that Hotan aka Keibun was responsible for stealing the goods, so Earl of Rotor arrested Keibun and made him confess everything through magic and tortures. Nuga aka Zeahad's crime was also made clear during the whole thing, he was also arrested and put under harsh interrogations.
The one who planned and gave the orders for the raid was none other than Ceras, the president of Mace Firm. And the ones carrying out the raid were soldiers of Earl Chada.
And just as the truth came to light, a spy Nirfut had dispatched to Chada came back, bringing news about a complicated quickening of the incident.